Plaque

Berkeley Municipal Rose Garden

NORTH

1300 block Euclid Avenue map it

CITY OF BERKELEY LANDMARK

designated in 1995

BERKELEY MUNICIPAL ROSE GARDEN

Vernon M. Dean, Landscape Architect, 1933–1937

The Rose Garden was a joint creation of the City of Berkeley and the Federal Works Progress Administration (WPA), whose public works projects provided employment during the Depression. Vernon M. Dean, the City’s landscape architect, designed the garden in a rustic style, with a redwood pergola and semicircular stone-walled terraces facing San Francisco Bay. Hundreds of tons of native rock were quarried in the Berkeley hills to construct the terraces. The garden was sculpted into the hillsides west of the Euclid Avenue streetcar line that crossed the canyon of Codornices Creek on a trestle. More than 2,500 rose bushes were selected by the East Bay Counties Rose Society led by Charles V. Cowell. The planting arrangement emphasized one color per terrace, starting with red at the top and descending through bronze, pink, and yellow to white at the bottom.

The entry overlooking the garden was redesigned by architect Helene Vilett in 1996 and rebuilt with community donations and funds from the City.

Berkeley Historical Plaque Project
1998


  • Rose Garden sign (2010), photo R. Kehlmann.

  • Rose Garden, overview (2010), photo R. Kehlmann.

Photo credit abbreviations:
BAHA: Berkeley Architectural Heritage Assn.
BHS: Berkeley Historical Society