Native Plants: The Big Picture

Aug 4, 2014

Lupinus paynei (L. excubitus var. hallii)Lisa Novick is ready to talk plants, going native, and California lovin’.

Novick is the Director of Outreach and K-12 Education at the Theodore Payne Foundation in Sun Valley.

Mr. Theodore Payne (b. 1872), in case you have not heard, hailed from Northamptonshire, England. At the age of 21, he sailed to America and his Ellis Island records state that he is in the “Seed Trade” and that he intends to remain in the country as a “Protracted Sojourner” (

In Los Angeles he worked as a head gardener, a “flower seedsman,” and in 1903, Payne’s “prolonged temporary stay” appeared to become of a more permanent nature when he bought his own nursery. Three years later, he published his first seed catalogue.


In 1915, Payne wanted to create a garden solely of plants native to California. After some time, he was granted five acres at the corner of Figueroa Street and Martin Luther King Boulevard. “The California Wild Garden contained 262 species of California native trees, shrubs and wildflowers.”


On August 9th, Lisa Novick perhaps will be channeling Mr. Payne when she presents her lecture “California Native Plants: The Big Picture.”

Lisa skillfully weaves water conservation and native plants, insect and bird preservation together in a way a novice can appreciate, and a seasoned gardener will find illuminating. She also shows how companion planting with native plants and edibles can dramatically improve the health and productivity of any garden. (Therese Brummel)

Lisa Novick; photo source, Huffington Post

Lisa Novick; photo source, Huffington Post


“California Native Plants: The Big Picture” 
Saturday, Aug. 9th, 3-4 p.m.
Throop Hall, Throop Memorial Church, 300 S. Los Robles, Pasadena 91101
$5 suggested donation
Light refreshments





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