Pat Pizzo was a dedicated nature enthusiast who loved to share his love of native plants. He was involved with many San Jose groups sharing his knowledge about native plant communities.
As a member of the Coyote Meadows Coalition, he provided a roadmap on how Coyote Meadows (an area between Olinder Park (Highway 280) and Kelley Park (at Story Road) could be restored to include many native plants to serve butterflies, pollinator insects, and improve the habitability of this 50 acre open space.
Another project that Pat worked on was the native plant garden at the Hellyer County Park Visitor Center. This area was formerly surrounded by grass and a blank, weedy hillside. He helped to design a beautiful rendering of a creek setting, complete with a rocky slope of river rock to simulate the creek, mounds of native plants that attract bees and butterflies while adding color, and many trees. The installation began in fall 2019, and the first plantings were in 2020.
Keep Coyote Creek Beautiful has been involved with weeding parties for the past few years at Hellyer County Park, and recently re-started our collaboration with the Park maintenance staff to keep up this native plant garden.
On August 19, 2021, the Park maintenance staff installed a beautiful bench made from a fallen oak tree that includes a plaque in memory of Pat. It is located under a valley oak near at the native plant garden he helped to design.
If you get a chance, please check it out and send energy out to Pat’s spirit thanking him for his vision with this garden. Hellyer County Park's Visitor Center is located at 985 Hellyer Ave in San Jose.