Image of the Peter J. Shields Oak Grove in the UC Davis Arboretum.

Post-Conference Tours

Post-Conference Tours

Thursday, 25 October 2018 to Monday, 29 October 2018

Two sequential Post-Conference Tours are being offered to allow for a range of schedules and budgets. Tours are only open to Conference registrants and a partner or spouse. Please see the Conference event page for registration details. The first tour will depart from the Hyatt Place hotel on the UC Davis campus. Questions about the Post-Conference Tours should be directed to Rachel Davis at

San Francisco Bay Area Tour

Schedule: 8 am, Thursday, October 25 through 6 pm, Friday, October 26

Tour Fee: $360 (single occupancy), $250 (double occupancy, per person). Fee includes lodging for one night, lunch on Thursday, breakfast and lunch on Friday, and transportation. Please note that dinners are on your own. Dinner options will be within walking distance of the hotel or we will shuttle to an area with several options.

Image of oaks in the California Bay Area.
Quercus chrysolepis in the coastal foothills

Tour Description: Join us for a look at the world of oaks around the remarkably diverse San Francisco Bay Area. We will see oaks in a myriad of settings, from urban pavement to wildlands. We will tour the University of California Botanical Garden’s global collections with some lovely Mexican oaks. Continuing into the wildlands overlooking Stanford and the Bay Area is the biodiversity hotspot of the coastal Santa Cruz Mountains, with regal, ancient oaks, redwoods, and even a few surviving American chestnuts (Castanea dentata) from a historic planting. Here we will be hiking the natural areas of Long Ridge Open Space Preserve, with a lovely diversity of rare native California oak species and hybrids - a fantastic opportunity to see the oaks that thrive in redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) habitat. Incredible views will make for a memorable experience in a place that has been an inspiration for many, including the music of the Grateful Dead. We will also tour Stanford University’s main campus to look at the remaining work by Frederick Law Olmsted, walk Steve Jobs’ favorite oak trails, and see what 40 years of oak restoration looks like at the urban/wildland interface in summer dry California. Finally, we will visit the new Apple Park Campus, with more than 60 oak taxa, and more than 5,000 oaks total.

Itinerary Notes: This tour starts in Davis and ends in Cupertino at a hotel with easy access to the San Jose International Airport.

Tour Leaders: Dave Muffly, Rachel Davis (see bios below)

Central Coast Tour

Schedule: 6 pm, Friday, October 26 through 6 pm, Monday, October 29

Tour Fee: $870 (single occupancy), $580 (double occupancy, per person). Fee includes lodging for three nights, breakfast and lunch for three days, and transportation. Please note that lodging on October 29 is not included but we do have a reservation block at Hampton Inn Los Angeles Int'l Airport/Hawthorne hotel for that night. All dinners are on your own. Dinner options will be within walking distance of the hotel or we will shuttle to an area with several options.

Image of oaks in Napa Valley.
Halter Ranch Vineyard incorporates the many benefits of the oak woodland into sustainable viticulture practices

Tour Description: We will continue our tour southward from the coastal town of Santa Cruz as we temporarily leave the coast to drive through the golden hills of California and the oak savannahs scattered throughout this region. We will visit a Quercus agrifolia champion tree at the eco-minded Halter Ranch Winery in Paso Robles. In contrast to this "Ancestor oak," we will visit the coastal pygmy oak woodland of the Elfin Forest in Los Osos. Along the way we will encounter Q. palmeriQ. berberidifolia and Q. john-tuckeri. We will continue on to the transverse ranges of California where a plethora of plant diversity converges where we will view the collections at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden. Finally, we will conclude our tour with beautiful specimens of Q. engelmannii as street trees and as a collection in the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden.

Itinerary Notes: A continuation of the San Francisco Bay Area tour, this tour starts in Cupertino and ends in Los Angeles.

Tour Leaders: Dave Muffly, Rachel Davis, Matt Ritter

Tour guide Dave Muffly is an arborist who has spent 30 years studying and augmenting local oak populations, native and otherwise. UC Davis Horticulturist Rachel Davis is a Bay Area native and has worked in both horticultural and habitat restoration fields in the area. Both Dave and Rachel have lived and worked on the Central Coast of California as well and are eager to share their local knowledge and experience.

Guest Tour Guide Dr. Matt Ritter is a botany professor in the Biological Sciences Department at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, California. He studies California’s native plants and trees that escape cultivation, particularly Eucalyptus. He’s the author of several books, and his most recent, California Plants is now available. His writing has appeared in several magazines, including a regular column on tree diversity in Pacific Horticulture.

Accessibility Note: These tours will encounter rugged, off-trail terrain.