“Managing Groundwater with the Paiute” Alan Bacock, Big Pine Paiute Tribe of the Owens Valley's Water Program Coordinator, testing water levels.

"Tending Nature" shines a light on the environmental knowledge of Indigenous peoples across California by exploring how the state's Native peoples have actively shaped and tended the land for millennia. The series examines how traditional practices can inspire a new generation of Californians to find a balance between humans and nature.

Traveling across the state, the series allows viewers to hear first-hand from Native communities engaged in contemporary projects that revive their culture and inform western sciences. 

The upcoming season premiering Nov. 3 features stories about the Paiute, Chumash, Yurok and Tongva tribes.

Produced in partnership with the Autry Museum of the American West, a collaboration that began with the award-winning documentary "Tending the Wild."

Full Episodes

Upcoming Airdates

Holistic Healing with the Syuxtun Collective

Since the 20th century, Western medicine has focused on treating a patient’s symptoms, not the underlying cause. Today, scientists and doctors are realizing that we should be wary of a health system that relies on direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising and are embracing alternative, preventive whole body options, which start with a healthy mind, body, and spirit. These are concepts Indigenous peoples have practiced for thousands of years, by using medicinal plant knowledge that informed much our pharmacopeia. 

Restoring The River with the Yurok, Hupa and Karuk

For the past two centuries, California has relied heavily on the natural resources of the North Coast region, exploiting its pristine watersheds for agriculture and its forests for timber. But today, the environmental costs of timber extraction and damming have reached a tipping point. Now the Yurok are working with local and state organizations to revitalize the forests, rivers and wildlife, a comprehensive feat requiring collaboration among community leaders up and down the Klamath and Trinity Rivers. This episode features interviews with:

  • 2020-06-04T18:30:00-07:00
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Managing Groundwater with the Paiute

In the wake of the recent drought, scientists and politicians are beginning to understand that reserving and maintaining groundwater is essential for addressing the state’s water needs. California’s Native peoples have lived with drought cycles for millennia and today, the Paiute are shepherding conversations around access to water resources, raising key questions about how our snowpack, streams and aquifers are used and maintained.

  • 2020-06-11T18:30:00-07:00
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Protecting The Coast with the Tolowa Dee-ni'

Today many California coastal ecosystems are under threat from human caused toxification of our oceans caused by industrial and residential development. This episode journeys to the Smith River near the Oregon border to discover how the Tolowa Dee-ni’ are reviving traditional harvesting of shellfish such as mussels, and in the process, working with state agencies to monitor toxicity levels and redefine the human role in managing marine protected areas.

  • 2020-06-18T18:30:00-07:00
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