Message from our President
The Milo Baker Board is back meeting over Zoom on the second Tuesday of the month (except in June, August, and December) at 6:30 pm. The group is lively and congenial. We’ve decided to meet in person occasionally to stay better connected and for social fun.
The new year for CNPS began April 1 so the chapter approved a budget for the year. We will continue our two cycles of scholarships, printed newsletters and a fall plant sale at the Laguna Foundation. We also hope to renew the August member’s picnic and hold a wreath workshop in December. Our monthly speakers will continue, except for July and August, in person. We are researching the technology to hold hybrid in-person/zoom presentations. Plant walks continue monthly, except for the hot summer. The Board also held a potluck picnic and walk in March at the Riverfront Regional Park.
As the chapter activities evolve, there are new and changing openings for Board members. We are excited to welcome June Stephens as our new newsletter editor. Caprice Disbrow will continue to help out. She also wants to explore SSU Herbarium work. Judith Rousseau will be stepping down in October as Books/T-shirts Chair and Erika Erzberger will be taking over. Judith has also filled in doing publicity and would gladly pass on her contacts and information to a new volunteer. Karen Thompson, our Treasurer, has been our hospitality host for Speaker Series meetings and is looking for a new person to join the team. We are also searching for a Conservation Committee Co-chair. If any of these positions are enticing to you, or if you know of another possible candidate, please contact me, or any one of our Board members. Thank you to all our awesome current and future Board of Directors!
– Wendy Smit, Milo Baker President
Stop Neonic Pesticides: Support AB 2146 and Save Pollinators
Neonicotinoids or “neonics” are neurotoxic pesticides that contaminate soil and water across much of the nation, drive massive bee population declines, and are increasingly linked to mass losses of birds and fish and human health risks.
Assembly Member Rebecca Bauer-Kahan of the San Francisco Bay Area has introduced AB 2146, which bans the harmful and unnecessary uses of neonics in non-agricultural settings, like those on lawns and gardens.
CNPS Milo Baker Chapter members are encouraged to take action to urge your California lawmakers to pass AB 2146. Learn more at the CNPS Protect Pollinators webpage. Show your support for AB 2146 by using the NRDC's (Natural Resources Defense Council) website to send a message, or write directly to your California State Representatives.
Eco-Friendly Garden Tour
Mark your calendar for Saturday May 14 to watch videos from Sonoma County native plant gardens. Yes, I am afraid the Eco-Friendly Garden Tour is all video again this year, but the great news is that ALL of the gardens on the tour are native and 3 are from our own members, Phil Van Soelen and April Owens. Phil is including both his current and his former gardens, the latter created from 1978-2015. His earlier garden is now owned by his daughter and son-in-law and continues to evolve. This is your only chance to see them since there is no room for parking for an in-person tour. April’s garden is a rebuild after fire and displays beautiful examples of fire-resistant landscaping.
The gardens will be filmed by a professional production company and narration will be by the garden owners or designers. The virtual tour is free, but you must sign up to get a link to the videos, beginning on May 14. Go to: www.savingwaterpartnership.org to sign up. They will send a link to watch once the videos are online.
Plant of the Month
Plant Walk – Porterfield Creek Open Space Preserve
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The Milo Baker Chapter Education/Outreach committee needs CNPS volunteers to staff a science exhibit featuring native plants. Our theme is: "How do native plants adapt to drought in our region?"
North Bay Science Discovery Day takes place on Sunday, May 15, from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at Grace Pavilion, Sonoma County Fairgrounds in Santa Rosa. We are seeking native plant specimens to display and recruiting volunteers to setup and staff the exhibit. See below for details.
Please sign up for Volunteer Opportunities #1 or #2 listed below:
Volunteer Opportunity #1: Volunteers are needed on Saturday, May 14 for setup and on Sunday, May 15 for setup, exhibit staffing, and takedown.
Date/Time: Saturday May 14, 2:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Shifts: 2:30 pm to 5:30 pm (5:30 pm - 7:00 pm as needed)
We need volunteers to meet us at the shed behind the Luther Burbank Art & Garden Center on Yulupa Avenue to load materials from the shed into one or more cars/vans/trucks. We plan to arrive at the fairgrounds around 3:00 where the NBSDD organizers will open a gate for exhibiters. We are likely to be finished with the setup by 5:30 pm. (It could possibly take longer.)
Date/Time: Sunday May 15
Early Shift: 8:30 am - 10:00 am – Volunteers continue exhibit setup of perishable plant materials, microscopes. Unload materials from vehicles and arrange all materials by 10:00 am opening.
Mid-day Shifts: 10:00 am - 1:00 pm and 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm – Please sign up for one of our two mid-day shifts. You will greet adults and children and explain characteristics of native plants that help them survive drought conditions in our region.
Late Shift: 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm – Volunteers take down exhibit materials, load into cars/trucks/vans. Drive to the Luther Burbank Art & Garden Center on Yulupa to put materials back into our shed.
To sign up for one or more shifts, please CALL Virginia at (707) 528-6030 or email Catherine firstname.lastname@example.org with your contact information and we’ll send you instructions. Detailed information about locations will be supplied by May 7. THANK YOU for signing up for one or more shifts to help us make NBSDD a big success!
Volunteer Opportunity #2: We need you to bring us plant specimens!!! Please bring native plant specimens (collected from your own property) to the fairgrounds on Saturday evening 4-5:30 pm OR Sunday morning 9-10 am. If you can’t drop things off at the fairgrounds – please arrange to drop off at Virginia’s place in Santa Rosa or Catherine’s place in Sebastopol – whichever is closer. Detailed times/location of drop-offs to be announced by May 7.
Native plant specimens needed: For our exhibit table, we need leaves/needles, branches/stems, roots/rhizomes/bulbs, and seeds of native plants from our region. Please see the list below.
Perennials: ferns, heuchera, marah (manroot), buckwheat, lupine, iris, monardella, Phacelia, salvia, triteleia, wyethia, succulents.
Shrubs/vines: manzanitas, baccharis, ceanothus, lonicera, coffeeberry, ribes, wild grape/vitis, elderberry, snowberry, California blackberry, salmonberry, thimbleberry, twinberry.
Deciduous trees: Bigleaf maple, madrone, bay, sycamore, alder, buckeye, hazelnut, cottonwood.
Conifers: cypress, hemlock, nutmeg.
Virginia, Catherine, Susan, and Marcia are taking care of oaks, redwood, pine, firs, and willow already. THANK YOU for finding diverse specimens that show different strategies for living through a drought! Native plants you think of that we left off this list are also welcome. And remember – ONLY collect these leaves, stems/bark, roots/rhizomes/bulbs, and seeds from your own property or from a neighbor’s property with their permission. DO NOT collect from parks!!!
Questions: Please CALL Virginia at (707) 528-6030 or email Catherine email@example.com
Please note that NBSDD is still requiring all volunteers, attendees, and exhibitors be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 or have a current negative test, and wear masks indoors.
We will go up 1 mile past Fisk Mill Cove and arrive about 10:15. We will walk about 1/2 mile to an acre right next to the rocks and water and quite exposed to the weather and wind. We will pull holcus mostly and have a lunch and leave at 3:30 to go back to the cars and be back in Forestall by 5:00.
Bring layers (prepare for spring winds at the coast), gloves, a hand hoe/ hori hori (I have extras), kneepads if you like, water and lunch.)
Hope you can come! If you want to drive separately I still suggest caravanning with the carpools. If you want directions, they are below:
Directions: Go 1.1 mile past Fisk Mill Cove. On the left you will have passed a large turnout and then see a wooden gate with parking space. The 44-mile marker is a block ahead on the right. Park and go through the gate and walk on the road/trail until it splits a second time and take the thinner trail on the left up the hill and out onto the ridge where you can see the ocean on both sides – quite stunning. Continue down and out toward the ocean slightly to the left. You will come right to the special acre. Breathe!!
For more information contact Jan Lochner, Invasive Plant Chair at (707) 569-4724
Living Learning Landscapes Workday was moved to the second Friday of the month since Laguna has theirs on the first, 10-12. Contact April Owens: firstname.lastname@example.org, (707) 331-2070
Weekly Doran Beach Ice Plant Removal – every Wednesday (9:30 am - 11:30 am). Meet at 9:30 at the Cypress Day Use parking lot, west end. Bring clippers and gloves and knee pads if you like. One of the most pleasant workdays happens every week – a trip to Doran Beach to pull ice plant. We are clearing out the ice plant that is in the marshland to make room for natives. It is very visual and quite satisfying, with the sound of the waves, birds and foghorn.
For more information, please visit the Volunteer Opportunities page on our website.
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