The surprising headwaters of the Laguna de Santa Rosa

October 5, 2012

Last Saturday, the Laguna Foundation and Cotati Creek Critters sponsored a public walk through Cotati and Rohnert Park to the historic headwaters of the Laguna de Santa Rosa. The Laguna is the second-largest freshwater wetland in coastal Northern California and stretches from Cotati to its confluence with the Russian River just north of Forestville. In 2011, it was recognized as a Wetland of International Significance.

The group, which included several Laguna Foundation docents, guides and staff members, met in downtown Cotati. Jenny Blaker, of Cotati Creek Critters, pointed out a few features of historical and cultural significance, from the statue of Chief Kotate to the six-sided hub with the named streets (an historical landmark), the statue of accordion player Jim Boggio in La Plaza Park, and Athena, the art project that is a result of a collaboration between Sonoma State’s Art Department and the City of Cotati. From there to Cotati Creek, past the Frogsong Cohousing Community, then along the Laguna channel toward Cotati’s Pocket Park.

Once irrigated lawn, this small park is now bursting with edible landscaping and colorful native plants, thanks to a collaboration between the City of Cotati and Daily Acts. It’s a living demonstration of how residents can save water by replacing lawns with edible landscapes as part of the city’s “Cash for Grass” water conservation program. Then it’s on past the Cotati Creek Critters headquarters at Cotati City well lot No. 2 to Ladybug Park in Rohnert Park. From the park, the pathway follows southward and eventually crosses Myrtle Avenue and brings one to ”Lydia Commons” at the south end of Lydia Court. This is the historic site of the Laguna headwaters area. The original course of the Laguna ran from the south end of this mini- park northward along the channel alongside the farm that borders the park.

Continue reading at The Community Voice – The surprising headwaters of Laguna de Santa Rosa.

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