The UCR campus is closed, but the Botanic Gardens are open partial days.
9 AM - 12 PM
Thursday & Friday:
9 AM-2 PM
1st & 3rd Sunday of every month:
8 AM - 2 PM
The Botanic Gardens are closed on major holidays and when the UCR campus is closed for academic and administrative holidays.
The Gardens will be closed on May 31, 2021
To ensure the health and safety of visitors, volunteers, and staff, the UCR Botanic Gardens are operating under current UCR Covid guidelines.
The UCR Botanic Gardens would not be possible without the enthusiasm and support of the Friends. Become a Friend and help make a difference!
NEW: UCR faculty and staff receive 10% discount on Friends membership! Use promo code FS10 when joining.
UCRBG Memberships (Student & Individual) include:
Early admission and early shopping at in-person and online plant sales
10% discount at participating local nurseries and garden centers
eNews and quarterly digital UCRBG Newsletter
Discounted and member-only Gardens events
Use of UCRBG Horticultural Library
American Horticultural Society (AHS) Reciprocal Admissions Program (RAP): entitles a member to special admission privileges and discounts at 330+ gardens throughout North America
Friends members are invited each June to attend the Members-only Annual Meeting, hosted by the Director and Gardens staff, where members are presented with an overview of the past year in the UCR Botanic Gardens illustrated by beautiful photos of the Gardens. New garden installations, facility improvements, educational and outreach activities, and fundraising events are reviewed, along with a budget summary including a recap of how membership and donor funds have been used. Future goals, including short and long term plans, are presented as well. Virtual Meeting on 6/24/2021 from 7-8pm via Zoom.
The UCR Botanic Gardens are ever changing and throughout the year there is always something in bloom. To enhance your visit, we feature a monthly "What's in Bloom" overview at the Gardens entrance and on our website.
What To See In The Gardens
1) Alnus rhombifolia, white alder
Right by our Alder Canyon sign by the trail leading to trail marker 36, stand 2 Alnus rhombifolia, white alders. One, planted in 1962, is the last remaining white alder from the original stand. The other alder, planted in 2014, is vigorous and the one that will assume the role as the most robust alder in Alder Canyon. Take a look at these 2 trees and pay close attention to the details of the young vs. old specimen.
2) Tree Anchored in a Rock
Near Bobcat Rock, between trail markers 25 and 26, you will find a Ficus tree that has anchored itself in a rock. Though the roots are in the soil, the way the tree is situated it appears as if it is growing from the rock.
3) Sephora secundiflora, Texas mountain laurel
Sephora secundiflora, Texas mountain laurel, typically grows as a multi-trunked shrub, slowly reaching a height of about 10-15 feet. What sets this apart as a favorite is the scent the hanging bluish-lavender flowers produce. Many visitors have said that it reminds them of grape soda. These shrubs are only a short walk from the entrance and are found near the first and second bridge.
Article & Photos by Miguel Estrada
Any group (10 or fewer) of individuals may schedule a docent-guided tour of the Gardens. Included is general information about the Gardens, desert adaptations of plants, uses of local plants by Native Americans, herbs, and more. Coverage can be tailored to the group's interests and needs.
Guided tours are best scheduled one month in advance. Tours are available 6 days a week (please check the home page for closure dates). Tours last about an hour, depending on interest and questions. Tours are scheduled on a first come/first served basis.
The fee for adult tours is $7.50 per person, paid in advance of the tour. To schedule a tour, please submit the request for Adult Tours.
UCR Botanic Gardens on KVCR
On April 7, 2021, KVCR Inland Edition's Lillian Vasquez spoke with Jodie Holt, Director of the UCR Botanic Gardens. Jodie shared the history of the expansive and diverse gardens and how they have shifted operations during the pandemic, but continue to grow.
Currently we have openings for volunteer Stewards to welcome visitors at the entrance gate and provide information about the Gardens and our policies.
We are also recruiting volunteers to assist with critical weeding and clean-up in the geographic gardens where the terrain is rough. The work is dirty but rewarding!
To ensure the health and safety of visitors, volunteers, and staff, the UCR Botanic Gardens are operating under current UCR Covid guidelines. Face masks are required!
Thank you for volunteering in the UCR Botanic Gardens!
The UCR Botanic Gardens are largely funded by donations, memberships, and earned revenue.
The fees for photo shoots help us provide a beautiful setting and recover some of our costs for staffing, maintenance, and operation of the Gardens.
To schedule a group photo shoot, please read our Photography Policy, complete the online form, and pay the $50 fee. Find more information on our website, gardens.ucr.edu.
Please note: Groups of 10 or fewer, maintain 6’ of social distancing, and face masks required. All groups taking photos/photo shoots are required to obtain advance permission, without it they may be asked to leave.
UCR & UCRBG COVID-19 Update
UCR remains in a Phase 2 Recovery Plan, outlined here: https://campusreturn.ucr.edu, and the Botanic Gardens continue to follow all requirements of UCR, Riverside County, California State, and the CDC.
All UC Riverside students are eligible to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine under eligibility criteria announced by Riverside County. Riverside County also announced that all individuals 16 years old and older who live, work, or study in Riverside County are eligible to be vaccinated at a county site.
To find a vaccination clinic in Riverside County, please visit the Riverside County Public Health vaccine information page.
Answers to additional questions about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccines can be found on the UCR COVID-19 vaccines page.
The following restrictions continue to remain in effect to prevent the spread of Covid-19:
Gate attendants to ensure adherence to all policies
Facial masks or coverings required for entry and when physical distancing from others is not possible
Physical distancing of at least 6 feet required from others not in your party
Group size limited to 10 persons
Designated restrooms open with hand sanitizer available
Drinking fountains closed but bottle hydration stations open
Touchless online functions including payment of admission donation using the QR code below:
The UCR campus remains closed with only critical operations continuing, including remote instruction. Faculty research remains limited, nonessential staff are working remotely, and all in-person events are suspended.
We are fortunate to be able to welcome visitors to our beautiful Botanic Gardens and provide a safe space for enjoying our gardens, wildlife, and an opportunity to get some exercise.
Please visit our website, gardens.ucr.edu, for updates on our status, hours, and virtual events.
Support the UCR Botanic Gardens
Thank you for your support!
As UCR's living museum, the Botanic Gardens serve to inspire and facilitate education, research and interpretation of the natural world while providing a peaceful oasis from urban life. Now more than ever, the maintenance, improvement, and advancement of our gardens and programs depend upon the generosity of our community of donors and members.
Dedicated benches, trees, plaques and other items in the Botanic Gardens are a way to honor or remember a loved one or a member of the community.
The cost of an honor or memorial gift pays for the materials, site preparation, installation and memorial label or plaque; additionally, a portion of the cost is placed into an endowment for maintenance and repairs.
For more information, please contact the Director, Dr. Jodie Holt at 951-827-7095.
Due to a shortage of building materials such as resin and plastic, the Botanic Gardens request donations of plastic plant containers please. We would also appreciate donations of decorative ceramic containers and/or hanging containers. Plant containers may be delivered to the front gate Steward during business hours: Mon-Wed, 9am-12pm, Thurs-Fri 9am-2pm, and the 1st & 3rd Sunday, 8am-2pm. Note: The UCRBG will be closed on 5/31/21.
1 Botanic Gardens Drive, Riverside, CA 92521
May 16- UCRBG open expanded hours, 8:00 am-2:00 pm
May 31- Gardens closed
June 6- UCRBG open, expanded hours, 8:00 am-2:00 pm
June 20- UCRBG open, expanded hours, 8:00 am-2:00 pm
June 24- Virtual Annual Member Meeting & State of the Gardens Address, 7:00-8:00 pm, via Zoom
*Please note: The Gardens are open Monday-Wednesday, 9:00 am-12:00 pm, Thursday & Friday, 9:00 am-2:00 pm, and the 1st & 3rd Sunday of every month, 8:00 am-2:00 pm, until further notice.