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Home&Real Estate Home Front EDIBLE GARDEN SERIES ... Drew Harwell will offer a series of classes called the “Edible Garden Series: From Design to Harvest” on five Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Feb. 2, March 2, March 30, April 27 and May 18 at Common Ground, 559 College Ave., Palo Alto. Focus will be on garden design and planning, composting, soil preparation, watering, harvesting techniques and best compost crops to plant after harvest. Bring a copy of “How to Grow More Vegetables” to classes. Cost is $325. Information: 650-4936072 or SUSTAINABLE HOME VEGGIES ... UCCE Master Gardener Candace Simpson will teach “Sustainable Home Vegetable Gardening” from 7 to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays, Feb. 5 to March 12, at Palo Alto High School, Room 1707, 50 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto. Topics range from soil preparation to pest management, weeds and diseases. Cost is $84. Information: 650-329-3752 or WHAT’S COOKIN’? ... The Palo Alto Adult school is offering three cooking classes this week, including “almost Flourless Chocolate Cake and Creative Decorating” (Cindy Roberts, Saturday, Feb. 2, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., $50); “Valentine’s Day Menu” (Yannette Fichou Edwards, Tuesday, Feb. 5, 6:30-9 p.m., $50); and “Baking and Pastry 101” (Ron Kent, Wednesday, Feb. 6, 6:30-9 p.m., $50). Each class takes place in Room 103, Palo Alto High School, 50 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto. Information: 650-329-3752 or www. NEW OFFICERS ... Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS™ 2013 officers include Carolyn Miller (RE/ MAX, Cupertino), president; David Tonna, (Alain Pinel Realtors, Los Gatos), president-elect; and Phyllis Carmichael (Coldwell Banker, Los Altos), treasurer. Among the 2013 board members are: Gene Lentz, (RE/MAX Distinctive Properties, Menlo Park), Region 9 chair; David Barca (Alain Pinel Realtors, Menlo Park), Menlo Park/Atherton district chair; Sara Spang (Keller Williams, Palo Alto), Palo Alto district chair; Bonnie Kehl (Coldwell Banker, Los Altos), Los Altos/Mountain View district chair; Chris Isaacson (Coldwell Banker, Woodside), director at-large; and Guillaume Peters (Sunviva Construction, Palo Alto), affiliate chair. Appreciation awards went to Susan Tilling (Coldwell Banker, Menlo Park), REALTOR™ of the Year; Iris Harrell (Harrell Remodeling, Mountain View), Affiliate of the Year; and Robert Reid (Keller Williams, Palo Alto), Spirit of SILVAR. N A OPEN HOME GUIDE 36 Also online at LÞÊ,iLiVV>Ê ÕÀ>˜ÊUÊ«…œÌœÃÊLÞÊ6iÀœ˜ˆV>Ê7iLiÀ large display of annual California native baby blue eyes greets visitors to Filoli in February. “That’s the wow factor when you first walk in,” said Mimi Clarke, who will be teaching the fourth year of “A Year in the Garden” series from February through September, with a break in August. “There’s two classes per day, so there’s a morning session and an afternoon session,” Clarke said. Classes will be taught on a Wednesday and Saturday of each month, with Wednesdays already sold out. “Typically, we’ll spend the morning in the classroom, talking about one of the more textbook topics, like botany. In the afternoons, we walk through the garden and I’ll do walk-and-talks, like a plant i.d. walk or a pruning demonstration.” Clarke, who worked at Filoli as a gardener for nine years, still taught classes as she started her own business, Fiddle Fern Landscaping. While she taught a limited amount of classes on Saturdays at the garden, she found that students wanted more. “I got asked the same questions like ‘Oh, what do you fertilize with? How’s your soil so great?’ I just came up with the idea of doing a ‘Year in the Garden’ for people to come back each month, to see the progression and see how the garden operates all year-round. I cover propagation, botany, soil science, plant i.d., several different pruning classes,” she said. Becoming well-rounded and oriented with key components of gardening are Clarke’s goals for the class, including soil, fertilizing, pest management, pruning, and general care along with the language of plants. Clarke walks students through the garden, demonstrating techniques and talking about how things are done, whether it be maintenance or pruning demonstrations, something she spends a couple hours on. “There’s a few spots that I kind of highlight throughout the course of things that I want people to see at different times of the year, so we’ll revisit it,” Clarke said in reference to the annuals display. She adds that the group will come back a few times throughout the year to “talk about what’s going on with the buds and just how they’re maintained” as well as when the tulips are being planted and the progression throughout the year. Clarke first came to Filoli as a summer intern while studying horticulture at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo before returning as an employee right after graduating. Clarke’s own grandparents had greenhouses, and she worked in her mom’s flower shop throughout her childhood in Hawaii. “I think gardening is just kind of in my blood,” she said. During her time as an intern, she learned from the gardeners there at the time and enjoys passing on her knowledge. “It was so valuable for me to be taught and I take real pride in what I do,” she said. “It’s fun to talk about what I love and know how to do. When students ask what they might think of as silly questions that are really basic, it makes me think back to the basics of things.” Students get access to the garden when Filoli is closed. They get to see the garden through different seasons, which Clarke said was (continued on page 35) Mimi Clarke, clockwise from top, who will be teaching a series of monthly classes on gardening called “A Year in The Garden,” stands in one of the Filoli greenhouses where students will learn about plant propagation; Climbing Colette rosebuds before they are pruned; a trimming of Calceolaria Integrifolia waits to take root in a greenhouse at Filoli. W H AT H A P P E N S I N ‘A Year in the Garden’? From botany to a pruning demonstration, students gain hands-on knowledge of gardening ÜÜÜ°*>œÌœ"˜ˆ˜i°Vœ“ÊUÊ*>œÊÌœÊ7iiŽÞÊUÊÊiLÀÕ>ÀÞÊ£]ÊÓä£ÎÊU Page 33

Palo Alto Weekly 02.01.2013 - Section 2

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