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Media Advisory

Rare orchids, new blooms at UC Botanical Garden on display for Valentine's Day

10 February 2006

ATTENTION: Garden editors and writers, Valentine's Day assignment editors

Contact: Kathleen Maclay, Media Relations
(510) 643-5651 kmaclay@berkeley.edu

Thinking of flowers for Valentine's Day? A tour through the University of California Botanical Garden might do the trick.

Among the garden's more than 12,000 kinds of plants are flowers just emerging - luscious, blooming rhododendrons. And for the first time in years, a collection of dozens of species of spectacular orchids, many of them rare or endangered, are on public display.

For those not as interested in the fragrance and classic beauty of posies, the garden features an intriguing selection of carnivorous plants. They were selected for the wide ranging mechanisms they use to effectively lure not the perfect mate, but prey for their meals.

The garden's idyllic 34 acres are tucked away in Strawberry Canyon and feature magnificent views of San Francisco Bay. The garden has been voted both the best place in the East Bay for a first date and for a wedding.

Open daily 9 a.m.-5 p.m., but closed the first Tuesday of each month.

200 Centennial Dr. in Strawberry Canyon just east of the central campus. For a map, go to: http://www.berkeley.edu/map/. The orchids and carnivorous plants are on display in the garden's newly expanded Orchid, Fern and Carnivorous Plant House, just inside the entrance.

Garden admission is $5 for adults, $1 for children ages 3-18, and $3 for seniors 65 and older. Everyone is admitted free on the first Thursday of each month.

To see a slide show highlighting a few of the orchids on exhibit, and for more details, go to: http://www.berkeley.edu/news/berkeleyan/2006/02/08_orchids.shtml. For more information about the garden, go to: http://botanicalgarden.berkeley.edu.

For comment, contact Janet Williams at the garden at (510) 643-3012.