ARS Electronica Festival
September 9-13, 2020 
UCLA Art Sci Center x Botanical Garden
Telluric Vibrations

The UCLA Art Sci Center and the UCLA Mildred E. Mathias Botanical are excited to announce that we will be a site in the prestigious ARS Electronica Festival this autumn! Virtual events will be available live to the public throughout the course of the five days. From oak genomics and sidewalk herbariums to nature-themed opera and fungal projections, you won't want to miss a beat! Keep an eye out for a more detailed email in the coming weeks with links for where to watch. The festival was started in 1979, and this year's theme encompasses ecology, art, design, humanity, and the dynamic changes we have experienced related to the global pandemic.

Make sure to add our email address ( to your contacts to receive more information about this festival! Please note that there will not be any gatherings at the Garden. All talks, performances, and exhibits will be accessible virtually!

Supporter Spotlight: Dorothy Jewell

Donor support enables our Garden to remain a free admission, green oasis to our community. This month we would like to thank our generous supporter, alumna, and docent, Dorothy Jewell. Dorothy's visionary gift to create the Jewell Terrace was made in celebration of her fond memories of guiding students around the garden and watching turtles in the stream. We hope you will enjoy this space on your next visit. Thank you Dorothy!

New Plantings in Hawai'i Native Collection

If you take a stroll through the Hawai'i Native collection you may notice some new little friends. Garden staff recently planted out many new seedlings. This wouldn’t have been possible without the help of volunteers Emma, Izabella, Yashan, and Xinsheng preparing the area. These plants were grown from seeds generously shared with us by the National Tropical Botanical Garden on Kauai and Lyon Arboretum on O’ahu. 

The name Hawai'i conjures up images of a wet tropical paradise in our minds, so you may be wondering how can we grow such plants here in Los Angeles? Due to the Botanical Garden’s close proximity to the coast, our mild microclimate allows us to grow more Hawaiian species than other gardens further inland. Also, by focusing on species that are native to dry regions of the islands, they can fare better in our semi-arid climate.

Why are we growing Hawaiian plants? Because they're unique and facing extinction in their natural habitat! The Hawaiian Islands are home 415 species of plants found nowhere else on earth. However tragically, 87% of those species are threatened with extinction due to habitat loss and the spread of non-native species. By growing these different species, our Garden can eventually help with ex-situ conservation efforts in the Islands.

One species we planted is Gossypium tomentosum (Ma’o/Huluhulu), a species that grows along the islands’ sunny coasts. Its silvery hairs on its leaves help reflect the heat of the sun to keep them cool and reduce water loss (see photo above). This Hawaiian native helped save the textile industry, when it was crossed with other cotton strains to create pest resistant hybrids. 

Volunteer Gratitude: Adam Long

We are so appreciative of the vibrant community of volunteers that help us achieve the Garden's mission. We couldn't do it without you all! This month, we want to celebrate Adam Long, who brought a great deal of horticultural expertise to projects here. In his own words: "It's been wonderful to be a part of the UCLA Botanical Garden community. I've been a gardener for over 10 years, both for fun and as a career. Moving to L.A. two years ago, I struggled to find space to garden and folks to garden with. I was so glad to find UCLA and join that community. It gives me a chance to stretch my gardening muscles and work on everything from day-to-day pruning and weeding to big, exciting projects. I've learned a lot from John, Michael, Henry, and the other staff and they've also been so trusting of my abilities - setting me up on projects and then letting me got for it. It's always great to see a multi-week project through to completion, for example from a bare mound of soil to a new water fern display." Thank you Adam!

Support the Garden

Each day, the UCLA Botanical Garden is free for the public to relax, reconnect with nature, and explore the incredible world of plants. Philanthropic support allows us to maintain collections, pursue plant conservation projects, and provide free educational programs. Membership, naming opportunities and planned gifts ensure a sustainable future for this urban oasis. For more information, check out our website or contact:
Nina Devries, Associate Director of Development for UCLA College Life Sciences: 310-912-8972
Copyright © 2020 UCLA Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden, All rights reserved.

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