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Despite being Closed, Fullerton Arboretum still Blooms

The flowers are blooming like they do every spring at the Fullerton Arboretum.

But this year, the public is missing the colorful display. Like other parts of the Cal State Fullerton campus, the Arboretum has been closed amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“I will say the wildlife loves it,” said Greg Dyment, director of the Arboretum and one of three people, along with Gregory J. Pongetti, living collections curator, and horticulturist Emmanuel Romo, considered essential and allowed to go in for a limited time.

“The squirrels are fat, the rabbits are everywhere,” Dyment said. “I go in there and the hawks start screaming at me. We have a pelican or two in our pond. It’s interesting. I think they think it’s the best time ever.”

The crops cultivated by CSUF’s U-Acre program and Monkey Business Cafe are still growing but are not being picked. And weeds are taking over, Dyment said.

With their four hours, three times a week at Arboretum, the men spend most of their time watering the plants in the 26-acre botanical gardens, which has a collection of 4,000 plants from around the world. The Arboretum is one of only 21 in the world to be awarded a level IV accreditation.

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Thursday, April 23, 2020