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A PUBLIC GARDEN IN OUR CITY SAN FRANCISCO BOTANICAL GARDEN AT STRYBING ARBORETUM IS A LIVING MUSEUM WITHIN GOLDEN GATE PARK. ITS 55 ACRES OF BEAUTIFULLY DESIGNED GARDENS DISPLAY NEARLY 9,000 TYPES OF PLANTS FROM AROUND THE WORLD. More than 20 unique collections include nearly 400 rare and endangered species. The Garden features nationally accredited collections of high elevation palms and Mesoamerican Cloud Forest plants as well as the most significant Magnolia conservation collection in North America. San Francisco’s temperate, foggy microclimate supports plants from nine geographic regions including several biodiversity hotspots. This makes San Francisco Botanical Garden unique in the United States.

Cover image: Natalie Ngo

Niall David

A CONTEMPORARY NURSERY IS THE HEART OF THE GARDEN. The proposed facility will enable us to fulfill our vital role as a world-class garden, in service to the public while also supporting global conservation efforts. This allows us to: Welcome plants from other institutions and provide proper care for rare, endangered, and unique species

Implement best practices for plant propagation and overall nursery operations for the living collection and retail operation

Improve safety and workflow to support our dedicated staff, horticultural team, and volunteers who contribute their knowledge, time, and leadership

Modernize our 50-year-old retail operation to offer noteworthy plants that are not commercially available

Enhance maintenance, security, and efficiency with centralized storage of equipment, tools, materials, and vehicles used throughout the Garden by the horticultural team


Unfortunately, the existing space:

Over the past five decades, the growing area and plant nursery has evolved in a makeshift way.

• Does not allow for the exclusion of pests and has poor drainage which risks spreading pathogens

• Cannot provide the professional conditions to accept or maintain plants from partner organizations seeking to protect those under threat in their native habitats • Is unsafe with uneven paving, non-tempered glass, hazardous electrical equipment, and poor security protections

• Lacks sanitary storage facilities for equipment and growing supplies • Needs more work space and staff/volunteer restrooms • Has insufficient storage for maintenance vehicles, equipment, and critical supplies



The new nursery will support the quality of the collections, enhancing the visitor experience, and strengthening vital conservation programs.

A modern nursery is critical to growing and maintaining a thriving, living plant collection.

• Grow backup populations of significant collections to ensure the continuation of threatened species and iconic Garden plants

Award-winning architects Siegel & Strain have developed a design concept to help the Garden:

• Cultivate seeds and cuttings for other public gardens • Propagate unique plants that are not commercially available • Improve documentation of growing methods • Receive sensitive material from other institutions and play a significant role in global plant conservation

Travis Lange


THE GARDEN A POPULAR DESTINATION IN GOLDEN GATE PARK SINCE 1940, SAN FRANCISCO BOTANICAL GARDEN IS A PUBLIC/PRIVATE PARTNERSHIP WITH THE SAN FRANCISCO RECREATION AND PARK DEPARTMENT. OPEN 365 DAYS OF THE YEAR, THE GARDEN IS FREE FOR CITY RESIDENTS AND MEMBERS. The new nursery will be at the same location on which it was built over 50 years ago. Closed to the general public, it provides essential growing and cultivation space along with secure storage for resources essential to the smooth functioning of the Garden and its team of volunteers and horticultural staff.




(Future Site)

Nursery (Closed to the Public)

KEY NURSERY COMPONENTS SCHEDULED TO BE FULLY OPERATIONAL BY SPRING 2022, THE NEW NURSERY AND MAINTENANCE FACILITY INCLUDES A HEADHOUSE, GREENHOUSE, STORAGE, GARAGE SPACE, AND EXTENSIVE GROWING GROUNDS. The complex comprises approximately 40,000 square feet, surrounded by safety fencing with secured entrances for staff, volunteers, and service vehicles. Structures are pre-engineered with simple lines and camouflaged with landscaping along pathways where visible to Garden visitors. Growing grounds are designed to be highly flexible, allowing for the creation of microclimates to ensure protection and proper care of our diverse plant species.

Siegel & Strain Architects

OVERVIEW The new nursery provides a secure centralized location for vehicles, tools, and other essential items needed to build and maintain a worldclass Botanical Garden. This consolidation brings enhanced efficiencies for staff and volunteers.

Siegel & Strain Architects

Natalie Ngo

EXPANDED GROWING GROUNDS Outdoor working and growing space comprises over 75% of the overall footprint. Half of the complex is dedicated to outdoor plants, with shade coverage for those which are more sensitive to the sun. By consolidating the upper nursery, the Garden can expand its public offerings to showcase the rich biodiversity of a new Afromontane collection, representing plants from cool mountainous regions in tropical Africa. This increases our capacity for protecting plants threatened in their native range.

Natalie Ngo

HEADHOUSE THE “HUB OF THE NURSERY� The largest addition includes a formal headhouse for propagation efforts. This covered, climate-controlled space allows the team to work side by side on potting new plants, taking cuttings, sowing seeds, and processing plant deliveries. The interior is designed to sustain the impact of frequent cleaning and to improve accessibility with proper ergonomic design features including moveable and adjustable tables.

GREENHOUSE The greenhouse provides ample space for cultivating and protecting sensitive plants year-round. Built with an aluminum frame and tempered glass roof featuring operable windows and state-of-the-art systems, it will be used for raising seedlings, rooting cuttings, and nurturing young plants. The structure offers protection from extreme weather, maintaining temperature, light exposure, humidity levels, and watering to meet the needs of these unique plants. Part of the facility allows for a “hardening off� period for the plants, with less temperature and humidity control, to prepare them for life outside the nursery while still providing shade and frost protection.

Nexus Corporation

ENHANCING PLANT BIODIVERSITY SAN FRANCISCO BOTANICAL GARDEN PLAYS A VITAL ROLE BY MAINTAINING PLANT BIODIVERSITY IN THE FACE OF THE EXTINCTION CRISIS. As habitats are destroyed, gardens help nurture and protect species that may otherwise be lost forever. Botanical gardens also offer space for inspiration and reflection, bringing people together who share a passion for environmental stewardship. Worldwide, gardens like ours are also cultivating the next generation of activists, educators, and stewards. The many improvements in the new nursery will enable the Garden to fulfill its promise and potential. Saxon Holt


In partnership with the City of San Francisco and generous individuals, the new nursery enhances the Garden’s vital role as a resource for our community and future generations. Permanent signage at the entrance to the nursery will recognize donors of $10,000 and above. To participate, please contact Stephanie Linder, Executive Director at 415.661.1316 x 415 or slinder@sfbg.org. Tom Karlo

Natalie Ngo

Travis Lange

Caitlin Atkinson

San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum Golden Gate Park 1199 Ninth Avenue at Lincoln Way, San Francisco, CA 94122


Saxon Holt

Profile for sfbotanicalgarden

2020 Vision For A New Plant Nursery  

Why a New Nursery? A new nursery facility will enable San Francisco Botanical Garden to achieve its potential as a world-class garden and en...

2020 Vision For A New Plant Nursery  

Why a New Nursery? A new nursery facility will enable San Francisco Botanical Garden to achieve its potential as a world-class garden and en...