The Theodore Payne Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the understanding, preservation and use of California native plants. The Foundation sits on 22 acres of canyon land in the San Fernando Valley, with a full-service native plant nursery, seed room, bookstore, art gallery, demonstration gardens and hiking trails. They offer field trip programs for K-12 students, as well as classroom outreach for schools that are unable to make the trip.
Field trips are inquiry-based and California Department of Education standards-based, and feature hands-on activities that teach students about California native plants and the natural world. Throughout all programs, the vital ecological link between native plants, insects and other animals is emphasized. Students will understand the water-saving benefits of native plants and the crucial ecological function that plants fulfill. Visiting schools can choose from several different grade-specific programs; see the website for details. Each program lasts approximately 3 1/2 hours.