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Outdoor Learning Center

Meeting Nature through Miwok Eyes

By Community Events, News & Events, Outdoor Learning Center

Sophie Bracinni’s story in the Lamorinda Weekly features an upcoming camp at the Lafayette Community Garden and Learning Center.

The Lafayette Community Garden site has everything that’s required to transport one back to the time when men and women lived in harmony with the land, taking only what they needed and feeling fulfilled in return. It lacks only the Lamorindans of 5,000 years ago: the Saclan tribe.

Peggy Maglien’s ambition is to take a group of children ages 8-12 (and maybe a few adults) back in time Aug. 12-16 and let them experience what it was like to live connected with nature. The camp, “Meeting Nature Through Miwok Eyes,” is offered through the Lafayette Parks and Recreation Department.

Read more here.

Ranger Bruce Weidman (right) and Doc Hale build a Miwok dwelling at Sugarloaf Open Space

Ranger Bruce Weidman (right) and Doc Hale build a Miwok dwelling at Sugarloaf Open Space.

All Hail Doc Hale!

By Community Events, History, Kids, Outdoor Learning Center

Wow, check out Sophie Braccini’s great article in the new issue of Lamorinda Weekly.

Longtime wildlife biologist, naturalist, and ethnobiologist James ‘Doc’ Hale understands the Lafayette area, its natural beauty, the wildlife that lives there, and the history of the Native Americans who once built villages along its creek and tributaries. He will discuss these Native Americans, and the edible plants they used for sustenance and medication, on July 13 at the Lafayette Community Garden and Outdoor Learning Center.

“The phrase that’s carved in our garden’s gate is Rachel Carson’s ‘In Nature Nothing Exists Alone,'” says Lafayette Community Garden’s Beth Ferree. “Gardening is only one of the components of what we are about; the other two are education and preservation.” Hale’s class is part of the garden’s mission to promote a better appreciation and use of our land.

Read more here.

Jim Hale

More Butterflies!

By Community Events, Gardening Tips, Lafayette Library and Learning Center, Outdoor Learning Center

We had another strong turnout for the last of our four education classes in the winter/spring cycle.  Pamela Winther, Lafayette resident, Landscape Architect and Adjunct Professor at DVC taught us all about butterfly gardens and the beauty and delight they bring.  We learned the best plants to grow, what conditions they need to flourish and more.

But before Pam taught the adults, kids had some more butterfly magic courtesy of the Lafayette Library and Learning  Center.  They each made their own butterfly and left with their own milkweed plant to put in the garden.

The new summer class schedule will be posted shortly.  In the meantime, enjoy the slide show.


Big Turnout

By Community Events, Gardening Tips, Outdoor Learning Center

More than 30 members and friends of the Garden turned out for the April 13 class on Irrigation and New Norms for California Landscape.  EBMUD’s Scott Sommerfeld did a great job and we did some hands on training while learning how to assemble drip systems.

Sign up now for the last class this spring:

May 11     1:30 – 3pm  – Creating and Enjoying a Butterfly Garden

 Join Pamela Winther, Landscape Architect and Adjunct Professor at DVC to learn all about butterfly gardens and the beauty and delight they bring.  She’ll tell us the best plants to grow, what conditions they need to flourish, and which beauties you’ll find in your garden.  We’ll explore the Community Garden’s new butterfly garden and maybe find some visitors.


Let’s Celebrate Spring!

By Community Events, News & Events, Outdoor Learning Center

The Lafayette Community Garden and Outdoor Learning Center is sponsoring this spring fundraising event. Please join us in this fantastic opportunity to explore Mount Diablo with new eyes.

Sunday May 5, 2013 wildlife biologist and naturalist Jim Hale will lead a natural and cultural history interpretive hike to Morgan Territory Regional Preserve. We will meet Jim at the parking lot and staging area to the preserve at 8:30 A.M. for a brief introduction and orientation. At 9 A.M. we will depart on a 5-mile moderate loop saunter as Jim interprets the medicinal and edible uses of wildflowers and native plants. He will introduce us to wildlife and several Native American sites, including Volvon villages, hunting blinds, ceremonial cupule rocks, a prayer circle, bedrock milling stations and other resources. We expect to return by 3 in the afternoon.

Bring a lunch and plenty of liquids. Wear appropriate clothing and hiking shoes. We can carpool from the Community Garden or you can meet us at the staging area. Morgan Territory Preserve can be reached by taking Ygnacio Valley Road to Clayton. Take a right on Marsh Creek Road for three miles. Turn right on Morgan Territory Road and continue for 9.4 miles to the staging area at the top of the ridge on the left.

Cost: $30/individual; $50/Family This is a tax-deductible donation to Lafayette Community Garden. Limited space is available. To register, email Beth Ferree at
Jim Hale

I’ts “Bugs Week” at the Library

By Community Events, Kids, Outdoor Learning Center

Bugs, Bugs, Bugs!!! It’s Bug Week at the Lafayette Library!

Designed for: Kids (5-11), All Ages, Young Children (0-5)

It’s Bug Week! Lots of fun activities all week! Storytimes & crafts! Bug visitors and a chance to go find your own beautiful bugs! Stop by the Lafayette Library & Learning Center for more details!!

On Saturday March 23, from 12-1 PM kids can come to the Garden and Dig around in the Worm Bins!