Day: February 21, 2017

Historical Houses Presentation and Tour

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Saturday, March 25, 2017 | 1:30 – 3:00PM

Learn of our local valley’s history through the chronicles of three old houses from the 1800’s: The Old Yellow House in Orinda, Rodgers Ranch in Pleasant Hill, and the John Muir House in Martinez. The inhabitants of these three houses lived in an original sustainable fashion, initially with wells, gardens, fruit trees, livestock and horses. The houses were miles apart, yet webbed together by an overall similar lifestyle, use of horse and carriage, and some exchange of information and goods.

Wonderful supporter/caretakers will be at the garden to speak about the first two houses, and a special guest from the 1800’s will give his presentation about the John Muir House.

These fun and informative historical presentations will be followed by an optional field trip to the Yellow House in Orinda, hosted by guest speaker James Wright. Information about days and times to make visits to the two other houses will be available at the garden presentation.

Our classes are free. However, a $5 donation is appreciated to support our education programs.

To register for classes click here or send an email to

The 11th Annual Lafayette Earth Day Festival

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Earth Day

Sunday, April 24th from 11AM– 3PM, Lafayette Library & Learning Center

Presented by Sustainable Lafayette in conjunction with the Lafayette Chamber of Commerce, the Lafayette Library & Learning Center, and the City of Lafayette.

Explore this year’s theme of Act Local. Throughout the day, we all have opportunities to make better, more environmentally-friendly decisions. Think about the products you purchase, the transportation options, the lunches we pack for kids, the snacks we carry with us to parks and sporting events. Could you take one more step and bring your reusable shopping bags, walk or ride, carpool once a week or choose fruit that comes in its own organic wrapper (oranges, apples and bananas)? Sustainable Lafayette’s mission has always been to support activities that enhance the quality of life in Lafayette. Making even small changes in your daily decisions can have a huge impact.

Things you can do at Earth Day:

Check out our suggestions for more ideas to get started!

Food vendors:

Green Awards

The annual Lafayette Awards of Environmental Excellence, more commonly known as the Lafayette Green Awards, recognize outstanding efforts that contribute to a more sustainable community and help the City achieve its environmental goals. More info can be found on the City’s website here.

Lamorinda Lunch ’n Learn: Habitats for Humanity

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The Lafayette, Moraga or Orinda Parks and Recreation Departments are offering a three-part series on backyard habitat gardening. Attend one class or all three! Everyone from the basic to the advanced gardener will learn something new.

Linda Mizes is an Orinda resident, Contra Costa Master Gardener, certified Master Composter and instructor who provides workshops throughout the county. Lecture/Q & A begins at 10:30 am. Lunch is served at 12:00 pm.

To register, contact the Lafayette, Moraga or Orinda Parks and Recreation Departments for their class registration.

1. It’s for the Birds (and Bees…)
Date: Tuesday, May 6 from 10:30am to 12:00pm
Location: Orinda Community Center, 28 Orinda Way
Fee: $10 MIN/Max: 10/30

Learn about providing and protecting habitat resources for the birds, bees and other critters in our gardens using native plants and other garden strategies. Lunch is generously provided by Tiffany Court Assisted Living of Walnut Creek.

2. Inside Dirt
Date: Tuesday, June 10 from 10:30am to 12:00pm
Location: Moraga Gardens Farm, 1370 Moraga Way
Fee: $10 MIN/Max: 10/30

Soil composition is one of the most important factors of a flourishing
garden. Learn about soil biota and how to keep the soil organisms healthy.
Composting basics, mulching guidelines and fascinating soil facts will be discussed.
Lunch is generously provided by Moraga Royale Assisted Living.

3. Habitat Garden Visit
Date: Tuesday, July 8 from 10:30am to12:00pm
Location: Private Orinda Residence (address will be sent to participants only)
Fee: $10 MIN/Max: 10/15

Visit a certified National Wildlife Habitat and a Bay-Friendly Garden located in Orinda. Demonstrations on composting, habitat gardening techniques, organic gardening, and permaculture will be provided. View a backyard chicken coop as well. Lunch is generously provided by The Kensington Independent and Assisted Living and Memory Care.

Science Cafe – Plants, Perfumes, and Poisons – May 1

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Wednesday, May 01, 2013 | 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM | Community Hall | Lafayette Library and Learning Center

Science Cafe – Plants, Perfumes, and Poisons

Curious about what makes a stinking hellebore stinky? What makes leaves turn color in fall? Organic chemist Dr. Margareta (Greti) Sequin, author, plant enthusiast and Lecturer Emerita at San Francisco State University comes to the LLLC to talk about the plants we love, and the things we love about them – like their scents, oils and colors. She’ll share her vast knowledge of California native flora and their pleasing and poisonous properties.

Dr. Sequin will lead us on a virtual, photo-illustrated walk around the vicinity of the Lafayette Library and surrounding nature areas to explore the smells and defensive substances of native plants. Plants are masters at defense, in the form of tough skins, thorns, or sharp spines, but also in the form of bitter saps, sticky resins, or poisons that can harm. We will look at plants that contain defensive substances and examine their molecular structures….no previous chemistry knowledge required! We’ll also explore the connections with human uses of these plant substances, such as commercial fragrances or medicines.

More information here.

Introducing Leah Ingram!

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We are pleased to introduce Leah Ingram, our Garden Manager.  Leah has gardened most of her life.  She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Landscape Architecture from Cal Poly with minor degrees in land rehabilitation, soils science and sustainable environments. During college she worked on the Cal Poly organic farm and performed small scale design and residential landscape installation in San Luis Obispo.  Following graduation, as an AmeriCorps volunteer, she assisted in conservation management of a forest preserve, restoring native plants in Hawaii.  She has also taught fourth graders

Leah Ingram - Garden Manager

in Alameda County about local creek ecosystems and watershed awareness.