As we approach our 50th anniversary of the plant sale, I hope that all members will plan on attending a special celebration party and pre-sale on Friday, October 8 from 3-6 pm. The event will be at our Milo Baker growing ground at the Laguna Foundation. This will be an opportunity to buy plants and to meet other members. Masks will be required.
We will have new t-shirts with the new version of the Milo Baker logo, the Pitkin Lily. There will be books to help you learn more about the CA native plants. Also bulbs from Brent and Becky’s and seeds collected by our members.
Our nursery manager, Betty Young, has put the list of plants that are available on our website: milobaker.cnps.org. The September newsletter contains information about the plants that we will have at the sale. So many people have been involved in the preparation of the plants at monthly workshops. We especially want to thank Penny Dalton, Wendy Born, Kristi Cain, Pat Sesser, Cindy Tancreto, Jan Lochner, Judith Rousseau, Marcia Johnson, Deb Dobish, Natasha Granoff, Denise Kelley, Wendy Smit and one very nice man Michael Terwilliger. The hard work of sowing seeds, taking cuttings, and transplanting that results in the beautiful plants that we will be offering at the sale has been cheerfully performed by these volunteers.
Remember in the fall the soil is still warm and the roots will rapidly expand and will continue to grow through the winter rains and be ready for the spring growth. Fall is Planting Time in California
Liz Parsons, Chapter Vice President
As you may remember, back in 2015, we started hearing about the root rot disease Phytophthora spp. It was beginning to infect natural populations of native plants. It was found that the infections came from nursery plants. The spores of the disease, in the potting mix, travelled to the surrounding naturally occurring plants. Now spores are in most of our garden soils and probably on the bottom of your shoe.
We built a nursery that prevents the entry of spores, because you can’t kill them. Plants on tables, pots and potting mix are pasteurized before use. Plants are constantly tested for the presence of spores and dumped if infected. And we work as if we were in a kitchen.
Thanks to the generous contributions of our members, the Laguna Foundation and hundreds of hours of volunteer and Laguna staff labor: we completed building our nursery in late summer 2018, and that fall we purchased a steam generator to pasteurize our potting mix and pots before use.
In working with the steam generator for 3 years now, to heat a pile of potting mix on the ground we were finding that some of the pile would heat to over 250oF (which will kill beneficial microbes and create toxicity) before other areas reached our 140oF pasteurization temperature.
(Media and pot pasteurizing in action. Photo: B. Young)
So here is the last addition to the nursery that will insure you take home healthy plants ready to thrive in your garden. And Laguna Foundation now has a tractor to scoop it up and dump so we old ladies do not have to shovel it.
Come to the member’s presale on October 8th 3-6 pm or Saturday October 9th 9am-1pm to buy your beautiful healthy plants. Don’t forget your masks.
Betty Young, Milo Baker Nursery
Scholarship Due October 4th!
The Milo Baker Chapter of the California Native Plant Society (Milo Baker) is looking to support students who are interested in learning about native plants or are engaged in study and/or research relating to native plant conservation, restoration, or other native plant studies.
Milo Baker provides two types of scholarships: a merit scholarship for educational expenses and a research scholarship to provide funding for research-related expenses.
Awards are open to students of Sonoma State University or Santa Rosa Junior College. Preference will be given to applicants who demonstrate a focus on Sonoma County flora or issues affecting plant communities of Sonoma County.
Merit Scholarships are available for students studying native plants, plant ecology, plant genetics, or related studies. Awards up to $1,000.
Research Scholarships are available for students that need funding for research related to plants in Sonoma County. Expenses may be used for new or existing projects. Awards up to $3,500 depending on project budget.
To apply: Submit the Milo Baker Research Scholarship Application (found on our website) to the Scholarship Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org
Deadline: Applications for the fall semester award must be received by October 4, 2021.
Sean McNeil and Karen Thompson, Scholarship Committee co-chairs