Two New, Outdoor Gardens Open at the San Bernardino County Museum

By on July 14, 2019

Two new, outdoor gardens at the San Bernardino County (SBC) Museum will open to the public this Saturday, July 13. These restored, native gardens will now feature interpretation and stories about these stunning and sometimes surprising plants in both English and Spanish.

The Desert Garden at the museum’s entry, is featuring plants that play an essential role in the survival and success of all other local organisms. Although California is home to thousands of native plant species that are found nowhere else in the world, how will changes in our climate threaten the survival of many of these species? How do – or will — these plants adapt in order to survive?

“Every part of a plant has a role in its own survival and success as well as in our survival and success, says Jessika Vazquez, curator of SBC Museum’s Integrated Science. “We are very happy to be able to showcase the connection between us and our natural resources, in this case plants. It’s especially exciting to be able to share these stories with our Spanish speaking community!” Vazquez spent several months researching and developing information about the Desert Garden and how these plants impact the regional eco-system.

The Ethnobotany Garden highlights local plants historically stewarded by the local tribal community. Many plants are an important source of food, and many of the plants in our region have been traditionally used for tribal medicinal properties. With the advancement of science and technology, plants still play an active role in how humans heal. The Ethnobotany Garden, off the museum’s interior courtyard, highlights some of these important plants.

SBC Museum’s Curator of Anthropology Tamara Serrao-Leiva worked closely with Morongo’s Malki Museum in preparing the new garden. She said, “The ethnobotany garden is a shared space. Animals, plants, and humans come together here and live in harmony. It is important to remember that our relationship to the land is symbiotic, and our health is integrally tied to the health of the land, whether it’s physically, emotionally, or spiritually.”

These new gardens are another example of the museum’s exhibits that highlight the regional cultural and natural history. They are one part of the SBC Board of Supervisors’ efforts to achieve the Countywide Vision by celebrating arts, culture, and education in the county, creating quality of life for residents and visitors.

General admission to the museum is: $10 for adults, $8 for military personnel and seniors, $7 for students with identification, and $5 for children ages 5 to 12. Children under five and Museum Association members are admitted free.

The SBC Museum is located at 2024 Orange Tree Lane in Redlands. The museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. except for recognized holidays. The museum is accessible to persons with disabilities and parking is free. For additional information visit the museum at: or by calling: 909-798-8605.