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Multiple regions, similar growing conditions

How non-native plants can flourish thousands of miles away from their origin and contribute to regional biodiversity

About the Beds

The Mediterranean Beds consist of four stone-bordered beds, designed around the ancient idea of a quadripartite paradise garden. Four paths separate the quadrant beds leading to the garden’s center. Each quadrant represents one of the regions outside California with a mediterranean climate; please explore each quadrant’s specimens below.

Mediterranean Basin Bed

Asphodeline lutea

Bupleurum fruticosum

Buxus balearica

Cyclamen graecum & C. persicum

Drimia maritima

Iris pallida ‘Variegata’

Iris unguicularis

Helleborus argutifolius & H. x sternii

Myrtus communis ‘Compacta Variegata’

Olea europaea ‘Montra’

Scilla peruviana

Teucrium flavum

Thymus thracicus

Trachelium caeruleum

Virburnum tinus ‘Spring Bouquet’

South & West Australia Bed

Banksia blechnifolia

Boronia crenulata ‘Shark Bay’

Chrysocephalum ‘Silver & Gold’

Correa ‘Wyn’s Wonder’

Darwinia citriodora ‘Seaspray’

Dianella revoluta ‘Little Rev’

Gastrolobium celsianum

Grevillea olivacea

Hardenbergia violacea ‘Meema’

Kennedia prostrata

Orthrosanthos multiflorus

Sollya heterophylla ‘Monterey Sapphire’

Western Cape, South Africa Bed

Amaryllis belladonna

Anisodontea ‘Strybing Beauty’

Elegia tectorum

Euryops virgineus

Helichrysum argyrophyllum

Kumara plicatilis

Leucandendrons: ‘Ebony’, ‘Chief’, ‘Little Bit’, ‘Jubilee Crown’, & ‘Winter Red’

Salvia chaemelaeagnea, S. lanceolata, & S. muirii

Bulbs (Babiana, Bulbinella, Freesia, Ixia, Moraea, Sparaxis)

Central Chile Bed

Aldama revoluta

Alstroemeria ligtu & A. hookeri

Cistanthe grandiflora

Crinodendron patagua

Fragaria chiloensis (also native to CA)

Lobelia excelsa

Pasithea caerulea

Puya coerulea, Puya venusta, & Puya chilensis

Sisyrinchium striatum ‘Aunt May’


Gamble’s Mediterranean Beds were first installed in the early 2000’s. Ten years after, the beds had fallen into disrepair. Landscape Designer and Gamble volunteer Cheryl Renshaw writes, “The original plant design was hard to see. Euphorbia seedlings overran the beds, the pebble mulch kept migrating into the froggy fountain, and few of the other original plants remained.

Thanks to a generous anonymous donation, the beds were refurbished from the winter of 2012 till the spring of 2013. The current quadrilateral layout was designed by Cheryl Renshaw. The stone walls were raised on the outer bed borders and a lot of sand and gravel was added to the soil to improve drainage. New dripline irrigation was installed, new plantings were added, and the soil was covered with new gravel mulch.

In 2021, new informational signage was installed in the Mediterranean bed signage thanks to a 2019 grant from the Woodside-Atherton Garden Club. The club is nonprofit organization dedicated “to stimulating and sharing knowledge about conservation, horticulture, floral design and photography.”

The beds and updated signage help visitors see the growing conditions can be shared across multiple regions and that non-native plants can flourish thousands of miles away from its origin. The signs were redesigned by Gamble Garden Assistant Cheryl Renshaw and former Gamble intern Mia Groff.

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