Our Ecology

Our city contains an astonishing number of ecosystems, alive & vibrant
All the physical and biological components of an environment make up an ecosystem. Despite intense urban development, San Francisco still has significant areas of extraordinary natural ecosystems, including grasslands, wetlands, coastal scrub, dunes, woodlands, and, of course, the Bay and the Ocean.



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Coined in 1930, the word ecosystem means all the physical and biological components of an environment. It includes all the organisms living in an area, along with all the non-living physical components that interact with organisms, such as air, soil, water and sunlight.


Among our impressive diversity of native animal species, many are interesting stories about nature in the city.


Among the kingdoms of life – animal, plant, fungi, protist and bacteria – the city’s Plant Kingdom is stunningly diverse for a city that is so comprehensively and densely developed.


San Francisco has spectacular natural areas and beautiful parks that harbor our rich natural heritage and its biodiversity.


Additional Information for Our Ecology

Local Plant Nurseries
Native plant nurseries in San Francisco or nearby.
Land's End Nature Walk
Walk the Land's End trail in the northwestern corner of the city to experience native habitat, restored by community volunteers.
Grow Your National Park
Volunteer at the Native Plant Nurseries of the Golden Gate National Parks (Presidio Nursery or Fort Funston Nursery)
California Native Plant Walk
"California boasts more native plants than all other states combined...."
Presidio Clarkia
The Presidio Clarkia is a rare and endangered native plant.