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INSIDE: N Classified Marketplace, page 64 N Puzzles, page 65 Home Front Al so on lin E M 60 HO GE EN PA OP DE, I GU HOME & REAL ESTATE PA L O A LT O W E E K LY e at w w w .P al o Al to On lin e. co m VOLUNTEER RECRUITING ... Filoli, at 86 CaĂąada Road, Woodside, will hold an open house for potential volunteers on Saturday, Jan. 16, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Future volunteers will learn about the various areas — Art Committee, cafe, garden shop, house and garden, nature education — where they’ll be needed in the upcoming year. More than 1,200 volunteers keep Filoli running. Reservations for the open house are required. Information at (click on “volunteeringâ€?) or 650-3648300, ext. 300. PRUNE FRUIT TREES ... Arborist Kevin Raftery will teach a class on “Fruit Tree Pruningâ€? on Saturday, Jan. 16, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Common Ground Educational Center, 559 College Ave., Palo Alto. The hands-on class begins at Common Ground, then proceeds to a local orchard; participants should bring pruning shears, a bag lunch and a notebook. Cost is $42. Information at 650-493-6072, www. or Top, Luta, Deanna Giuliano’s dog, walks past a bed of Festuca Rubra (aka Red Fescue) in the Native Plant Garden that she manages at Foothills Park; middle, Ribes Sanguineum (Pink Flowering Current) will be featured in Giuliano’s lawn-conversion class, as well as Carex Tumulicola (Berkeley Sedge), below. PRUNE ROSES ... Filoli’s former lead horticulturist Mimi Clarke will teach a class on “Pruning and Care: Climbers, Ramblers & Scramblersâ€? on Saturday, Jan. 16, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and “Pruning and Care: Hybrid Tea Rosesâ€? from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at Filoli, 86 CaĂąada Road, Woodside. Fee for each class is $35 for nonmembers, $30 for members. Information at www.filoli. org or 650-364-8300. GOOD BLOOMS ... Steve Hootman will talk about rhododendron species that perform well in the Bay Area at the next meeting of the De Anza Chapter of the American Rhododendron Society on Wednesday, Jan. 20, at 7:30 p.m. The group meets in Room 12 of the Hillview Community Center, 97 Hillview Ave., Los Altos. Information at www.deanza-ars. com. A WARMER SEASON ... Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s campaign to collect “One (continued on page 43) LAWN WORKSHOP DEALS WITH REPLACING GRASS WITH NATIVE PLANTS by Barbara Wood W â–  photographs by Veronica Weber hen Alex Von Feldt and her family moved to Portola Valley in 2001 they loved the big lawn that came with their house — that is, until the water bill arrived. Local residents can learn how Von Feldt and her family cut their water bills in half by replacing much of their lawn with native plants, and how to do the same thing themselves, at a workshop sponsored by Acterra in Palo Alto’s Foothills Park on Jan. 16. The class will also include information on rebates offered by the Santa Clara Valley Water District to help pay for replacing lawns with native plants. A few years after moving to Portola Valley, and after spending many hours hiking in the Peninsula’s nature preserves, Von Feldt decided to swap some of her lawn for less-thirsty native grasses she had admired on her hikes. With her husband pitching in, she removed sod and plant- ed plugs of native grasses. The project was so successful that two years later she replaced a much larger section of lawn with a meadow of grasses, perennials and shrubs — all natives. “After studying nature for a while and seeing what type of meadows I enjoyed I tried to replicate it as much as possible,â€? she said. “After the second summer, we basically didn’t have to water at all.â€? She also said goodbye to her gardening service. “Since I’ve replaced my lawns I’ve been able to do all the maintenance in my yard myself,â€? she said. Her two young children, now aged 6 and 8, and her dog love to play in the meadow as well, she said. Von Feldt, who is on Acterra’s board of di(continued on page 43) *>Â?ÂœĂŠÂ?ĂŒÂœĂŠ7iiÂŽÂ?ÞÊUĂŠ>Â˜Ă•>ÀÞÊ£x]ÊÓä£äÊU Page 41

Palo Alto Weekly 01.15.2009 - Section2

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