Roses in Fuller Park by Carol Dacanay
When were roses first planted in Fuller Park? The park was established in 1905, but when roses were planted is any one’s guess. In 2017 a UC Master Gardener was walking through the park and noticed the rose area; struggling, somewhat pruned and with 2 volunteer trees growing among the roses. Instead of just wishing the park department would do something, Lori Durbin, UC Master Gardener, proposed that UCMG of Napa County take it on as a joint project with the Napa Park and Recreation Department.
Once the project was approved by both organizations, UCMGs collaboratively designed the new hardscape, selected roses that grow well in Napa County and designed their placement. Roses (that were healthy enough to save) and the trees were potted so that they could be replanted in another park. NPRD selected a permeable path material that would be used for the first time in the park, it fit ADA requirements and allows water to penetrate its surface rather than add to run off. Trellises and a bench were also installed. MGs have been involved with planting and educating the grounds keepers on rose care and pruning. A beautiful wood fence was constructed as part of a Boy Scout Eagle project.
Master Gardeners are on site frequently during late spring through early fall to answer questions about growing roses and to tidy up the garden. Workshops are held annually for the public. We continue to nurture the garden and address any concerns that arise.
Our vision for the Rose Garden at Fuller Park is to provide rose care education, to provide a beautiful display of these popular flowers and to enhance the beauty of the park.
UC Master Gardeners of Napa County have also worked with NPRD to develop a “Tree Walk” at Fuller Park. Notable trees are identified and a docent led walk is offered during warm weather. The Tree Walk signs also allow for self-guided tours.
Some Interesting Notes About Fuller Park
- Fuller Park is on the ‘National Register of Historic Places’
- Originally known as “Campbell’s Grove” consisting of ½ playing field & ½ orchard
- Napa’s football and baseball teams held their contests there
- In 1905 10.8 acres purchased for $12,000 by a public supported bond and turned into a public park named “Oak Street Park”
- Name changed to “Fuller Park” in 1919 to honor C.H. ‘Jack’ Fuller the Napa mayor involved in its acquisition
- The Master Gardeners also provide Guided Tree Walks at Fuller Park.