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Shields Oak Grove

Stories of Trees, People and Community: Celebrating the Friends 50th Anniversary

Written by Aliciá Ayala and Naina Misra, Learning by Leading™ Museum Education co-coordinators

Imagine yourself in the UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden, then look up. You’ll likely find yourself beneath one of the many gentle giants such as a coast redwood, valley oak, or Torrey pine. These trees hold significance for generations of students, alumni, staff and visitors. Many of these trees were planted and cared for by UC Davis students, staff members and community volunteers, whose efforts were often made possible by the Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden (“Friends”), a community-led support group.

By utilizing the Friends’ personal archives, memories, and newsletters, we were able to create a dynamic Story Map detailing the history of trees throughout the historic, 100-acre Arboretum. This map specifically highlights our largest tree collections, the Peter J. Shields Oak Grove and the T. Elliot Weier Redwood Grove, as well as other notable trees throughout the collections.

This Story Map is just one way that we are celebrating the Friends’ 50th Anniversary this year. The Friends community group has played a key role in supporting the gardens, volunteers, students and programs of the Arboretum and Public Garden for the past five decades and looks forward to strengthening its support for decades to come. 

To take part in the Friends’ 50th celebrations, click here, and to look at the magnificent history of our trees, click here. The Story Map can be viewed on a phone, tablet, or computer.

Explore the Rooted in History Story Map

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