Gardens of Alcatraz

San Francisco's Biggest Surprise

 During our recent trip to San Francisco, my husband and I took a tour of Alcatraz- the well known prison on the rock.  I’d never been there- dismissing it as a tourist attraction akin to the London Dungeon.  While we were standing in line, there were dozens of colorful container gardens that reminded me: there is a garden on Alcatraz.  And what a garden it is.

Amazing Succulents

 All along the main walkway up to the prison, there are great borders of succulents, flowering plants and other great plants.  It was a perfect 80 degrees with a light wind- and you could see why succulents would do so well on this rock in the bay.

The Prisoner's Borders

 According to the Gardens of Alcatraz website, the gardens were planted by Elliott Michener, an inmate at the facility.  He did an impressive job (and I can’t imagine that there was much danger of him swimming to shore).  The work is maintained by a conglomeration of the National Park Service, Garden Conservancy and Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy. 

Flowers on the Rock

Even elsewhere on the island, where flowers appeared not to have been placed in borders, the flowers were goregeous.  I definitely recommend a visit- it’d be a great family activity: kids can tour the prison (which is not my idea of a good time) and you can tour the gardens.  I hope the weather is as gorgeous for you as it was for us.
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One Response to Gardens of Alcatraz

  1. Pingback: Rainy and Lovely California | Gwendolyn’s Garden

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