Native Plant Public Garden proposed for Ferndale, plans to be presented to the Design Review Committee tomorrow | Lost Coast Outpost


Plans for the WDH Interpretive Gardens, provided by Thomas Herman


The wasteland on Main Street near Shaw House in Ferndale may soon be home to a public garden full of native plants. The WDH Foundation is presenting plans for the “WDH Interpretive Gardens” to the Ferndale Design Review Committee on Thursday.

The property was owned by longtime Ferndale resident Willis Hadley, who died in 2017. Hadley was passionate about wildlife conservation and, before his death, formed the WDH Foundation to ensure that his properties would be preserved as open spaces.

Thomas Herman of the foundation told Outpost that the native plant garden has been in planning for about a year. Design plans for the garden include coastal dune habitat, a riparian zone habitat, a butterfly garden, a small pond and a waterfall. Access would be free to the public and the trails would be wheelchair accessible.

“The gardens would be a place where people could go and appreciate the different biomes of Humboldt County,” Herman said.

One of the main attractions of the garden, Herman said, would be the famous pink Victorian dollhouse – also known as ‘the house that Troy built’ – which has remained on Main Street for many years. The foundation has had the little house restored and is eager to give it a new home in the garden, where it can be enjoyed by the community and visitors.

Garden plans still have to go through several approvals before construction can begin. But if all goes well, Herman said, the foundation hopes to launch the project by the end of this summer.

Herman hopes to see support for the garden, which would be funded and maintained by the foundation and could truly benefit the community.

“It’s going to take what is otherwise an unsightly wasteland and turn it into a nice place for people to visit when they visit Ferndale, shop or sightsee,” Herman said.

The Ferndale Design Review Committee will meet online via zoom on Thursday, June 25 at 8:30 am You can view the full agenda here.

If you are interested in participating, here are the meeting agenda instructions:

We strongly recommend that public comments for this meeting be submitted prior to the meeting. Public comments should be submitted to by 4:00 p.m. on Wednesday June 24, 2020.

Be sure to put “Public Comment” in the subject line and include the item on the agenda, if applicable. All public comments received by 4:00 p.m. will be read into the minutes (limited to 5 minutes) at the regular meeting.

To provide public comment during the meeting, you will need to join the conference call.

Join the Zoom meeting

Or go to and enter the following information when prompted

Meeting number: 839 5524 7083

Password: 314802

Or for phone-only access: Dial from your location +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose) +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma) Enter the following when prompted

Meeting number: 839 5524 7083

Password: 314802

Proposed site maps from the staff report of the Ferndale Design Review Committee


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