Fall/Spring Classes

Summer Field Trips

Field Course Requirements

Trip Logistics

Equipment and Food

Frequently Asked Questions

Plant Sales




Field Course Requirements

Recommended prerequisites:

  • High school biology; concurrent enrollment in Horticulture program.


  • You will need a notebook and digital camera or sketchbook to document plants and habitats studied during the trip.


  • The recommended textbook for field trips is California Vegetation by Holland and Keil, ISBN 0787226858. See https://he.kendallhunt.com/product/california-vegetation to order from the publisher, Kendall Hunt.
  • For some trips, a class reader (individual trip packet) may be available. Cost is usually about $10.
  • The Jepson Manual, regional floras, and other references will be available in the van during the trip.
  • Email before the trip will suggest books and maps for the region to be explored.


(Not applicable to Summer Field Trips)

Field trip attendance is mandatory! Attendance at the orientation meeting is required for those who have not previously participated on a field trip.

Each student's degree of participation (attentiveness and attitude) will be noted, and if it interferes with the normal instructor/student exchange, the student will be encouraged to adapt or disengage.

After the field trip (by the end of the semester), each student will provide the instructor with documentation of educational engagement with the subject matter on the trip. For example:

  • slide show (digital photo presentation) at end-of-semester class potluck
  • annotated photo essay
  • annotated sketchbook of plants or landscapes
  • essay on an aspect of the field experience: analysis of habitats, vegetation patterns, geology, or landforms
  • essay on a plant family well represented on the trip

Grading will be based on trip participation and the thoroughness of the presentation.

For students who have an unanticipated emergency that prevents participation on a trip, makeup projects should be completed by the end of the semester. Suggested topics include:

  • Produce a monograph of an important or diverse genus in California: ex. Ceanothus, Eriogonum, Quercus, Penstemon, Mimulus.
  • Produce a field specimen collection of leaves, fruit, cones for class display representing a specific region.
  • Produce a bibliography of select native plant topics through a literature search.