The Gottlieb Native Garden

a california love story

The Gottlieb Native Garden is a flourishing ecosystem belonging to Susan and Dan Gottlieb, friends of flora and fauna and devoted environmental philanthropists. With more than 100 hand-selected plant species and hundreds of animal species, the backyard is a National Wildlife Federation-certified Backyard Wildlife Habitat and a Xerces Society-designated Pollinator Habitat.

It isn’t possible to turn cities into woodlands overnight,
but Angelenos can start with small but
meaningful steps to reclaim their region’s natural beauty.

Why Native Plants?

The benefits of planting native extend far beyond saving water with drought-resistant flora. California native plants are not just beautiful and fragrant; they also provide food and habitat for wildlife, supporting biodiversity in what otherwise might be considered barren terrain. California’s ecosystem evolved over tens of thousands of years, creating a rich landscape filled with diverse wildlife. As your own native garden matures, you can witness the arrival of bees, butterflies and other insects that fill vacant niches. Next, birds will appear, adorning the garden with beautiful song and color. Before long, a vibrant ecosystem will operate in harmony, enriching your life in immeasurable ways.

With native plants, a garden can achieve beauty with purpose. If you like the idea of stepping outside into an ecosystem of California flora and fauna, then native plants are the way to go.

Theodore Payne and the Gottlieb Native Garden


Once a year in southern California, the Theodore Payne Foundation hosts a weekend garden tour, a two-day journey through many of Los Angeles County’s most beautifully designed, eco-conscious private and public native landscapes. Hundreds of people attend, visiting whichever gardens they find most appealing. The event is a convergence of like-minded enthusiasts – from beginners to experts, all ages – who get the chance to evangelize the virtues of native plants. By spreading awareness of the beauty, vitality, and environmental benefits of native gardens, the weekend is a powerful opportunity to promote conservation of California’s unique flora and fauna.

The Gottlieb Native Garden is one of the most prominent stops, and guests have consistently raved about it since the first tour in 2003. Huell Howser, the late KCET television personality and host, dedicated a full episode of his popular series, “California’s Green,” to Susan’s work after being at the Gottlieb Native Garden the day of the first tour.

The Theodore Payne Foundation is a nonprofit nursery and educational organization dedicated to preserving California habitats, making native plants and wildflowers available, and educating citizens about the importance of native plants.