UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA
University of California
UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA

Berger Gardens

We have two demonstration gardens outside the Santa Clara County building where the UC Master Gardener offices are located, the Berger Edibles Demo & Teaching Garden and the Berger Native Demonstration Garden.

Address: 1553 Berger Drive, San Jose, CA 95112 (View map)

Directions: In front of Building 1

Visiting hours:

  • The Berger Edibles Demo & Teaching Garden is open to the public during our workday on Tuesdays from 10:30 am–12:30 pm. It is viewable through the fence other times. We also offer occasional Open Garden Days.
  • The Berger Native Demonstration Garden is always open for viewing. Workdays are on the 4th Tuesday of every odd month from 10 am–noon (excluding holidays). Please come and join us on a workday if you’d like to learn more about California Native plants and their care. There is a diverse mix of pollinators that visit this garden. We have even had tree frogs show up, so you never know what you’ll see in our Berger Native Garden.

Berger Edibles Demo & Teaching Garden

Our garden was built in 2013 and represents what an average gardener in this area can accomplish. You are welcome to visit the garden, help us plant, weed, harvest or just ask questions.

We love to talk about gardening and share what we know regarding the plants and seasonal vegetables we grow in the Demonstration Garden.

Features include vegetables in raised beds mixed with ornamentals and rustic garden objects/art. Our plantings change seasonally, offering a visual example of what can be grown in your own garden year round.

We will offer several Open Garden Days for the public and County employees. See our Calendar. Visitors will have the opportunity to come into the garden and work with us hands on with tasks such as seeding, transplanting, soil management, composting, vermicomposting and more. Short “mini” presentations will be given to County employees and the public at large during the lunch hour.

Our goal is to teach research-based gardening skills to the community in order to improve lifestyles through exercise, healthy eating (lots of vegetables!), as well as support the environment by using ecologically sustainable practices.  Nothing fancy, just hand tools, organic amendments, and hard work.

Berger Native Demonstration Garden

The Berger Native Garden (BNG) was created in the Fall of 2013, based on a design by Master Gardener Rebecca Schoenenberger. This garden was designed to showcase California Native plants that are also UC Davis Arboretum Allstars. The All-Stars list is an inventory of field-trialed plants that have been named by the Arboretum staff as among the best to grow in the State of California, as well as being pest & disease resistant. Arboretum Allstars are dependable and showy plants, so this garden hopes to give those passing by an inspiring example of what they might consider when replacing a lawn with a Native garden.

The garden is included in the Going Native Garden Tour each year. And many of the plants are labeled so people can learn which plants they like and what to look for at nurseries. There are benches and a picnic table where many County employees eat their lunch and enjoy the changing views and colors of the garden. In Spring, the garden is filled with wildflowers. In Summer, there is a great diversity of colorful flowering Natives. Fall is the time when we usually do most of the pruning of the garden. Winter is when new plants go in so they can get watered by nature. Regardless of the season, this garden always has something in bloom. One of our greatest goals with this garden is to dispel myths about Native gardens—myths like “Native plants only look good in Spring.”

Photo: by Rebecca Schoenberger

Webmaster Email: webmaster-mgsantaclara@ucanr.edu