Have you seen the UC Davis Animal Science GATEway Garden? Be sure to stop by when you get a chance to check out the newly-planted beds and to enjoy the peaceful surroundings, that is, if the nearby donkey is not braying!
You may feel as though you are trespassing because there is a gate at the entrance, but it pushes right open to give visitors a closer glimpse of the animals, and, once the interpretive signage is installed, an educational look at the research being conducted here. Take note of the farm equipment re-purposed by creative Animal Science crew members; there’s a bench viewing area created using old wagon wheels, another seating area that makes a squeeze chute look inviting (see photo at the left), planters made from feeding troughs, and a picnic bench fashioned from a hay feeder.
Under the large valley oak at the center of the garden you will find a selection of California natives known to thrive in this tree’s shade. Large sandstone rocks brought in from the upper reaches of Putah Creek provide visual definition and serve to separate the planting areas within the raised beds. As the plants radiate out from the oak you’ll find a mix of selections native to the southwest and high-desert including a variety of grasses typically consumed by domesticated animals raised in these areas.
Notice the lack of landscaping west of the oak tree? That’s a placeholder for a large teaching deck yet to be installed.