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Casino Night and LEAF Fundraiser Saturday September 19, 2009 Rooster Run Golf Club 6:00 – 10:00 PM

$40 (includes Dinner and $40 in gaming chips) Blackjack Tables, Roulette Wheel, Craps Table Also great Raffle Prizes!

See RSVP flier inside

2009 North

Coast Chapter Calendar of Events

September 19th ….……Casino Night & LEAF Fundraiser @ Rooster Run Golf Club September 26th ………...CLT Training @ Buckeye Ranch (Installation) October 3rd …………….CLT Field Test @ American River College Sacramento October 20th ………….Dinner Meeting – Greywater (location to be announced) November 17th…………...New Member & Student Dinner @ Cattlemens

December 11th ……….....Holiday Party - Rooster Run Golf Club -Petaluma



PRSRT STD U.S. Postage PAID Sebastopol. CA Permit NO. 170

September 2009 In this Issue PAGE 3 ……………President’s Message PAGE 4……………..Disturbed versus Native Soils by Alrie Middlebrook PAGE 6….................August Dinner Meeting @ Buckeye Ranch PAGE 8……………..Making Solar Affordable One City at a Time PAGE 10……………Great News for Greywater PAGE 16……………College of Marin Begins Green Energy Projects PAGE 17……………Sustainable Update from Equinox Landscape PAGE 19…………....Sodding with Sedum and Succulants This Publication’s Masthead is Printed on Recycled Paper North Coast Chapter of the California Landscape Contractors Association

NORTH COAST CHAPTER BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chairman of the Board – Past President Jan Gross Heritage Landscape (415) 458-8151 jan@herlandscapes.com President Brigid Flagerman Bertotti Landscaping (415) 897-4097 b.flagerman@verizon.net

CLCA 2009 State Officers

President-Elect/Secretary Charlie Thompson Cagwin & Dorward (415) 892-7710 Charlie.Thompson@cagwin.com

Heath Bedal JPH Group LLC Phone: (916) 457-5925 heath@jphonline.com

Treasurer Lisa Stratton Cagwin & Dorward (415) 892-7710 lisa.stratton@cagwin.com


Associate Member Chair Russ Clarke Park Ave Turf (707) 217-9669 rmclarke07@yahoo.com Resource Chair David Anderson Monarch Gardens (415) 491-1425 dave@monarchgardens.com CLT State Committee Liaison Dave Iribarne City of Petaluma (707) 778-4591 diribarne@ci.petaluma.ca.us Programs Chair David Gross Heritage Landscapes CLT Training Chair Luis Lua Integrated Design Studio lelua99@yahoo.com

Chapter General Board Members Gary Ronconi Sonoma Landscapes (707) 938-0621grsonomalandscapes@aol.com Henry Buder Henry Buder Landscape Restoration (415) 686-9228 hbuderlandscape@att.net Jose Moreno Gardeners’ Guild jmoreno@gardenersguild.com

Lesther Saquelares Gardeners’ Guild La.saquelares@yahoo.com

Tyler Doherty Cal West Rentals (707) 763-5665 tyler@calwestrentals.com Owen Mitchell Mitchell Landscapes (415) 717-6214 mitchland@sbcglobal.net Dave Phelps, CLT, ASLA Gardens & Gables (415) 499-0331 dave@gardensandgables.com Chris Zaim Akita Landscape (707) 486-2548 akita@aceweb.com


William Schnetz, CLP Schnetz Landscape, Inc Phone: (760) 591-3453 bill@schnetzlandscape.com

IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT Peter Dufau, CLT Dufau Landscape Inc. Phone: (805) 985-2421 dufauland@aol.com

SECRETARY/TREASURER Eric Watanabe Majestic Pools & Landscape Phone: (818) 831-1390 ewooc@aol.com DIRECTOR OF CHAPTER SERVICES Andrew Simpson Quillen Enterprises (916) 721-1635 quillent@aol.com

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Sharon McGuire Phone: (800) 448-2522, ext. 13 FAX: (916) 446-7692 sharonmcguire@clca.org

North Coast CLCA Executive Director Journal Editor Connie Salinas P.O. Box 1621 Sebastopol, CA 95473 Phone 707-829-5487 Fax 707-829-5487 heyconniesalinas@hotmail.com

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE - CLCA Family Event at Tahoe by Brigid Flaggerman “Gosh, Jim, that man at the bar looks familiar. I’ll bet I went to school with him in Auburn.” “Oh, for Pete’s sake, Liz, that’s Walter Cronkite.” I can’t tell you how many times our family laughed over this story of mistaken identity. And since it took place at Squaw Valley during the 1960 Olympics, it was with great anticipation that I was finally able to see Squaw Valley for myself and witness the place where my parents, nearly 50 years ago, entered a bar in the Olympic Village after they had just watched the USA hockey team beat the Russians. Walter Cronkite leaned over to my parents and said, “This would be a great time to place a bet, the folks in the bar aren’t yet aware of the outcome”, as TV coverage at that time, was delayed. What makes the Summer Family Extravaganza so special is that my mom, sister-in-law and my two nephews were able to join in the fun. The high light was taking the tram up to “High Camp” (a good 8000 feet above sea level) where I was awed by the incredible beauty and scenery. This was LANDSCAPING and no body even had to pay for it. The experience reminded me once again how important it is for us to take breaks and get away from the day-to-day problems that confront us in the landscaping industry. Meanwhile the educational events were terrific. I participated in Promoting Sustainability with Frank Nicoli and Business Tips to Survive the Recession with Lebo Newman. Both are CLCA members and both were outstanding seminar presenters. Frank is known as being one of the very first in California to promote sustainability; he discussed the IPM Pyramid of Tactic developed at Penn State, the soil food web and biorationals. Lebo discussion was centered on reducing expenses and the difference between morale busting cuts such as reduced wages and reduced health care vs. life style cuts such as consistent buying vs. open buying when purchasing office supplies and reduced dollars for company events. Both programs were timely and insightful. Our keynote speaker was Brad Hamms from Colorado. His speech centered on the topic of “ownership thinking” and the benefits this can bring to the bottom line. He was so popular that we hope to bring him back next year for a daylong seminar. Brad stressed the importance of weekly meetings with all management staff and instead of looking back at what was done in the last week, month or quarter, his point is to have each staff member realistically predict how they expect to do in the future: next week, next month, next quarter. As each manager or employee reports on just their own area own area of expertise, it is then relatively simple to compare goals versus actually performance both for the specific employee, his or her department and the company as a whole. Plus, he stressed, each employee needs to understand how reaching his or her goals will ultimately affect the profitability of the company. Coming up: We are now in the second half of our CLCA Northern California Chapter fiscal year. This is the time when we begin thinking about the composition of the board for next year. Charlie Thompson, president elect, and I handed out a list of committee and board member openings which need to be filled starting January 1st, 2010. If you were not at the recent dinner meeting on August 12th please e-mail me for the complete list and please take a look at the positions we need filled for next year and volunteer your time. As your current president I cannot even begin to tell you how satisfying and personally rewarding being a board member has been. Also, we are pleased to announce that we will be launching our North Coast Chapter Web Site at our October dinner meeting. Stay tuned, web fans… Thank you again to the State for organizing the Summer Family Extravaganza. It was terrific to see many old friends, meet many new ones and be able to share a little swimming pool time with my nephews.

The Majesty of Squaw Valley was the perfect setting for CLCA’s Summer Family Extravaganza which I was able to share with my family! Pictured above right are my sister-in-law Stacy and nephews Liam and Sean.

Disturbed versus Native Soils Beneficial soul microbes: 1. Bind soil particles 2 Gather nutrients and water for plant nutrients 3. Churn soil particles to create space in the soil for air and water 4. Break down vegetative material like leaves and other plant material. Native soils and improved soils have: 1. Many air and water pockets 2. Many micro- and macro-organisms 3. Good environment for deep plant root growth 4. High evaportranspiration and surface water infiltration and detention 5. Ability to capture great amounts of surface water and absorb runoff and reduce erosion When rainfall hits an undisturbed native soil site, typically 50% of the water will evaporate into the atmosphere. 35% will penetrate the site soils. It will pass thru a top layer of organic matter, then reach the top soil, proceed down thru the subsoil until it reached the groundwater. In native soils 15% of the rainfall will become surface runoff. Disturbed Soils Typically, construction practices remove a minimum of 2-3 feet of native top soil. After construction is completed, perhaps only 2-3 inches are replaced with introduced soil and turf, an exotic monoculture. In addition the subsoil has been compacted. This causes: 1. Limited air and water pockets 2. Few micro- and macro-nutrients 3. Shallow root growth 4. Low evapotransportation and surface water penetration So when rain falls on a disturbed ksite, 15-30% of the water will evaporate, only 15% of the water will penetrate the soil and up to 70% of the water will run off, carrying with it pesticides, silt and animal waste. Regular use of pesticides and fertilizers take a toll on soils because they suffocate essential soil life. Healthy soil is a sponge. It absorbs rain and slows down run off It stores and releases water and nutrients as the plants require them. It filters, traps and ultimately breaks down urban pollutants such as oil, metal and pesticides. It also filters and purifies the air and water that percolate thru it. It perpetuates life on the Earth by supplying valuable nutrients and antioxidants to plants. A billion soil micro-organisms in one teaspoon of soil performs numerous functions in native soils. Perhaps of those billion there are 4000 different species of bacteria, fungi,nematodes and Protozoa. The bacteria bind the finer soil particles together. These become micro-aggregates and they are bound together by fungal vegetative growth. Insects and earthqurms move through this matrix, creating the structure so that water and nutrients can pas thru freely. If native or healthy soils are protected and perpetuated disease causing organisms will be kept in check, Nutrients and water can be stored and used as the plants require them for healthy growth. Native soils work to control pollution by breaking down pesticides and hydrocarbon pollutants. They bind heavy metals into immobile forms. They convert soluable organic material into complex stored organic forms This is called biofiltration or bioremediation. This is how native soils function naturally.

‌..Soils continued A healthy ecosystem is the best defense against invasive plants. Therefore we should minimize disturbances of any land use activities. If we do disturb a site, we should restore the site quickly. Treat each site individually based on the existing plant community/ecological system that has been disturbed. Invasive plants affect water quality, species diversity and populations, reduce favorability for species reproduction and reduce available food sources. US has approx. 5000 species of introduced plants, many of which are invasive. Higher levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide due to global warming will increase the proliferation of invasive species. Invasive species generally increase their area 14% annually. This calculates to doubling their growth every five years. Many invasive plants are introduced for landscaping purposes. Invasive plants accelerate soil erosion and stream sedimentation, absorb precious water sources and affect water quality. They also carry diseases and attract insects that are harmful to beneficial plants. Exotic plants affect the structure and function of soil communities. Native plants and exotics each supply resources to the soil community. Therefore unique soil communities form under different plant species. Plants supply organic matter when leaves fall and decompose, when their roots exude chemicals or other methods that the plant uses to deposit organic compounds into the soil environment. When an exotic plant invades a soil community, it can alter the links between the plants and organisms that are above ground and the plant parts and organisms that are below ground. For example, the leaf litter of an invasive plant might alter the quantity, quality and timing of litter production. This would alter the inputs of nutrients. Some exotic plants create more leaf litter and debris. This builds fuel which could increase fire intensity and frequency. In low rainfall areas in particular, this could adversely affect soil communities structure and function, resulting in a slow recovery from fire and a long delay before a healthy ecosystem has returned. In some cases, this may take hundreds of years. Plants exude secondary compounds from their roots. If the compounds released by an exotic are novel to a soil community, they may alter the composition and function of the soil community. For example, diffuse knapweed, an Eurasian invasive releases the chemical 8hydroxyquinoline from its roots. This has been found to act as an antimicrobial agent and has caused shifts in the composition of the beneficial soil microbes in the soils where it has invaded. Far example, garlic mustard, another invasive species from Europe produce glucosinolates. These compounds have also been found to cause significant reductions in the abundance and function of arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi.(AMF communities). The abundant presence of these symbiotic fungi leads to substantial increases in the nutrient uptake of host plants. Because AMF can have affects on both individual plants and plant communities, when an invasive is able to alter their dynamic this may affect the long term relationships of many of the plants in a forest. An exotic plant can also alter the attributes of an ecosystem. A nitrogen fixing plant that invades a nitrogen limited plant community will alter nitrogen cycling and the overall composition of the plant community. Exotic plants can directly alter the physical properties of the soil. Saltlover is an invasive that hyperaccumulates sodium in its biomass. This increases sodium concentrations which affects beneficial soil microbial activity. Certain invasive plant species literally transform ecological communities. Research indicates that soil microbes have powerful effects on invasions. Alrie Middlebrook - Middlebrook Gardens 76 Race St. - San Jose, CA 95126408-292-9983 Office Info@Middlebrook-gardens.com


Alrie Middlebrook – Our August Speaker It was a beautiful evening at Buckeye Ranch!!! The weather was grand as was the food and drink. Many thanks, as always, to Tony & Kim Bertotti for hosting this fine event. We had a large turnout of more than 60 people who came to hear Alrie Middlebrook speak about “Originist” landscaping. See her article on Disturbed versus Native Soil in this issue.

Tony Bertotti and Luke Pope did a fine job at the barbeque that night. Special thanks to Kim Bertotti for arranging this event!

Some smiling faces we always love to see; Steve HewettGardens and Gables, Ed Grossi – Sweet Lane Nursery and Phil Wyatt from Wyatt Irrigation.

Response to North Coast CLCA May Dinner Meeting – GOING ORGANIC: DEAR EDITOR: You know how some times in life you really know it all has been worth it. Well, tonight 5-19-09 at a CLCA dinner meeting of the North Coast Chapter, that type of value came back to me. It was in 1971 that Wally Leiser, Dave Dorward, and myself started the N.C. Chapter. Tonight, Jacob Voit from Cagwin and Dorward came to speak to the N.C. Chapter group assembled. Jacob is possibly a bit younger than myself when this chapter started and yet his spirit, his thoughts and expression, was that of a sage man. He spoke of the nature, the natural world, and how it fits in our businesses. He spoke of collaboration, communication, interest in one another’s businesses. He was supporting the environment and how we all can prosper, grow and help this earth in the process. I was introduced to Organic Gardening the Magazine by my father in the 1940’s. I thought then it was a bit “way out there” and yet as my father practiced what he read and I began to see the results, I was impressed. I didn’t always follow those practices in the early years of my business, but when I returned to them, my business benefited as I did. Jacob tonight has called out to all of us to “hear” the word, live the life, and help us help ourselves. In helping one another, we can continue to support the good, I believe, we all wish to bring to this world. There is now, and the movement is gaining momentum, a new view of sustainability for all of us. I challenge us all to reach out and begin that action now for the improvement of our Planet, our neighbors, our businesses, our industry. SHE is going to love you back. Your Mother – Earth.

Francisco Peccorini Queco Inc. dba Landscape Management Associates

The Late Show Gardens – a three-day garden show in Sonoma, September 2009 – is open to the public.

Call for tickets: (877) 504-5283 or visit www.thelateshowgardens.org

Making Solar Affordable, One City at a Time A California nonprofit is creating a program that it hopes would make it easier for cities and counties to offer solar financing to their denizens.

A California nonprofit plans to launch a program that aims to make it easier for cities and counties to offer solar financing to their residents. The California Statewide Community Development Authority (CSCDA), a joint power authority of the California State Association of Counties an the League of California Cities, is developing a statewide solar financing program that would essentially be a much larger version of the one launched by the city of Berkeley last fall. Berkeley made headlines when it created an innovative program in which the city would sell bonds to pay for installing solar energy systems for its residents and businesses. The residents then repay the city via property taxes, plus interest, over a 20-year period (see Berkeley to Launch Solar Financing Program). Berkeley hired Oakland-based Renewable Funding to administer and line up financing for the program, which was limited to a pilot scale of $1.5 million partly because willing investors were hard to come by. The CSCDA has hired Renewable Funding to develop a similar program – its member cities and counties could join it instead of creating their own. The program would solve some of the challenges faced by cities and counties in trying to line up financing and administering their own programs, said Cisco DeVries, president of Renewable Funding. "It allows you to finance at a big scale and should allow for a more cost-effective program," DeVries said. "It also allows for more diverse bonds, which would allow for cheaper bond rates." Making solar affordable has been a challenge to overcome for an industry that wants to see a mass adoption of its products and services. Thus far, consumers nationwide rely heavily on rebates and other incentives offered by federal, state, local governments and even utilities to cut the expensive upfront costs of buying and installing a solar energy system. "Our program offers a good offset to the biggest hurdle for solar – the big upfront costs," said Terrence Murphy, a program manager at the CSCDA. "Cities and counties that are operating their own programs now have to allocate current employees to do the work. Through us, they don't have the same responsibility, but they can still offer the same types of programs." The CSCDA wants to make the program available not only for solar installations but also for energy efficiency improvements, Murphy added. The energy efficiency improvements would have to be permanent to a home, so replacing windows and adding insulation would count, but not changing light bulbs.

DeVries is the architect behind Berkeley's program. He was working as Mayor Tom Bates' chief of staff and came up with the idea of using special tax districts to sell bonds and finance solar installations. Local governments throughout the country have used special tax districts to pay for sanitation, utilities, fire services and other public services. Berkeley's program was so popular that it received all the applications it could accommodate in nine minutes. Renewable Funding, which was founded in 2008 and has 12 employees, bought the bonds issued by Berkeley. The California Legislature then passed AB811 last year to ensure that all cities and counties have the authority can finance solar installations and collect payments via property taxes. Selling bonds isn't the only way for local governments to fund their programs. Sonoma County in northern California launched its program in spring this year. It set aside $45 million from its treasury and another $70 million from the Sonoma County Water Agency to fund the programs, which are not only for solar power generation but also energy efficiency projects. Boulder County in Colorado launched its program in April this year and hired Renewable Funding to administer it. Boulder County could issue up to $40 million in bonds for the program. The CSCDA program is scheduled for deployment this fall, DeVries said. After cities and counties sign up, Renewable Funding will work with them to put the program to work. Residents and businesses should be able to start signing up in early 2010. DeVries and his staff have been analyzing the potential demand of the program. Funds could come from bonds or direct capital, he said. His firm already ha lined up the Royal Bank of Canada as one of the underwriters. Greentech Media - 08-12-09 by Ucilia Wang

“I have no doubt that we will be successful in harnessing the sun's energy... If sunbeams were weapons of war, we would have had solar energy centuries ago.� Sir George Porter quotes

GREAT NEWS FOR GREYWATER from the Greywater Guerillas Yesterday the Building Standards Commission voted to pass the new California Greywater Code (Chapter 16 in the CA Plumbing Code). This was passed as an emergency measure due to the drought and water shortages faced in the state. The code will be going through a public review process for the next 45 days. The opposition (the plumbing union, and some building officials) will be writing in negative comments about the code. People who support having a simple, safe, and accessible code will also need to write in comments to help ensure the code is not changed during the comment period. We'll send you more info in the upcoming weeks about how to provide input into this process.

Thanks again to everyone who has written and called in to the Department of Housing and Community Development to share your view point. They listened and responded in this new code. We couldn't have done this with out the huge amount of support for simple greywater regulation coming from you all. Importantly, the CA department of Public Health spoke in full support of the code, citing water shortages and degrading quality of fresh water being a much greater health concern than any potential issue with greywater. Lastly, local jurisdictions will be allowed to make greywater more restrictive, which many will want to do. Now is a good time to start conversations with your cities and counties about how they can help support safe and accessible reuse of greywater.

Summary of the New Code (as it's written now) *no permit needed for a washing machine system if the system followed health and safety guidelines outlined in the code. *no permit for a singe fixture (one shower) if guidelines are followed *mulch basins allowed (instead of gravel) *other systems are separated into "simple" and "complex" depending on the quantity of water. There are less requirements for “simple� systems. *depth of discharge is 2 inches under mulch (it used to be 9" under dirt)

Greywater Definition Greywater is washwater. That is, all wastewater excepting toilet wastes and food wastes derived from garbage grinders. There are significant distinctions between greywater and toilet wastewater (called "blackwater"). These distinctions tell us how these wastewaters should be treated/managed and why, in the interests of public health and environmental protection, they should not be mixed together.

CLCA North

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Coast Journal

Use the right number…. Support Our Advertisers!!

Suppliers Guide Bamboo Pipeline……………………………………(888) 288-1619 Buckeye Nursery…………………………………....(707) 559-7081 Cal-West Rentals…………………………………...(707) 763-5665 Central Valley Builders……………………………(707) 473-9722 Delta Bluegrass …………………………………….(800) 637-8873 Ewing Irrigation……………………………………(415) 457-9530 FX Luminaire………………………………………(800) 688-1269 Gaddis Nursery………………………………….….(707) 542-2202 Hunter Industries…………………………………..(707) 933-0488 Instant Jungle –Bamboo & Palms…………………(707) 794-8292 John Deere Landscapes…………………………….(800) 347-4272 Lampson Tractor…………………………………...(707) 584-7290 Landscape Contractors’ Insurance Services………………………………...(800) 936-9933 Landscapes Unlimited Nursery…………………… (800) 371-3300 Pacific Nurseries…………………………………… (650) 755-2330 Park Avenue Turf…………………………….……. (707) 823-8899

Donate or Shop for Surplus New and QualityUsed Building Materials!!!

Shamrock Materials………………………………....(707) 792-4695 Sweet Lane Wholesale Nursery…………………… (707) 792-5008 Target Specialty Products…………………………...(800) 533-0816 Terra Trees…………………………………………..(707) 942-9944 Village Nurseries……………………………………..(800) 875-1972 Vine & Branches…. ………………………………....(707) 433-5091 Vista Lighting………………………………………...(800) 766-8478 Wyatt Irrigation………………………Santa Rosa...(707) 578-3747 Wyatt Irrigation………………………Ukiah………(707) 462-7473 Wyatt Irrigation………………………Napa………..(707) 251-3747 Wyatt Irrigation………………………Petaluma…...(707) 762-3747

Donating Materials Your contributions are welcomed and needed. Each donation helps Habitat provide decent and safe housing to our county’s low income working families as well as redirecting useable materials and supplies from the landfill!!! ReStore is located at 24 Tenth Street at Cleveland Avenue, just north of Santa Rosa’s Railroad Square. Store Hours are: Thursday’s, Fridays and Saturday’s between 9am and 5pm or by appointment.

Call (707) 568-3228

Thanks Advertisers!!

Donations can include: irrigation, roofing, windows, doors, tiles, sinks, water heaters, mantles, columns, flooring, lighting, hardware, cabinets, appliances

Marin County Stormwater Pollution Prevention Program invites you to a workshop on

Ants, Rats and Racoons: Managing Pests without “Poisons” (and taking an Integrated Pest Management Approach)

Thursday, September 17, 2009: 9:00 am – 3:00 pm (DPR credits available) Marin County Office of Education, West Wing II, 1111 Las Gallinas Ave., San Rafael LUNCH PROVIDED WITH RSVP

COST: $15.00 (free to municipal staff)

Art Slater, UC Berkeley Pest Management, 1973 – 2001 • biology and behavior of Argentine ants • where/how Integrated Pest Management (IPM) fits in • water quality issues around fipronil and pyrethroids • practical solutions Richard Estrada, ATCO Pest Control • behavior of roof rats vs. Norway rats • exclusionary methods • what works – what doesn’t • secrets of successful traps Maggie Rufo,The Hungry Owl Project • hazards of secondary poisonings by predator owls Maggie Sergio, Wildlife Exclusion Service • behavior & biology of raccoons • managing the environment • why re-location of wildlife doesn’t work Panel Presentation: Gary Downing, Maintenance Worker, Town of Corte Madera and IPM Specialist Seig Azmuth from Seig’s Abatement Service will discuss rats, ants and yellow jackets; Jon Wright, County of Marin Public Works, will discuss roach management in the cafeteria; and, Dave Hattem, Marin County Parks and Open Space will discuss yellowjackets. .

REGISTRATION REQUIRED – SPACE IS LIMITED TO 30 PERSONS! Please complete the registration below and return to: Gina Purin, Marin County Stormwater Pollution Prevention Program, P.O. Box 4186, San Rafael 94913-4186 Please include check for $15.00 made out to County of Marin. (Public agency staff are not charged but must register. Fax form to Gina Purin at 499-7221.)

Name _____________________________________________________________________________ Address ___________________________________________________________________________ Organization _____________________________________________ Phone ________________________ Specify Lunch Choice: _____ Vegetarian

Number attending ________

E-Mail ___________________________________ _____ Non-Vegetarian (Turkey)

___________________________________________________________________________ If you are a person with a disability and require accommodations, please call (415) 473-4381 (voice) or (415) 473-3232 (TTY) at least four work days in advance of the event. Copies of documents are available in alternative formats, upon written request.

Marin College Begins Green Energy Projects Construction crews at the College of Marin worked on several projects at the Kentfield and Indian Valley campuses this summer that will offer alternative sources of energy and reduce the school's energy-related costs. The work is part of the school's commitment to green energy principles, and will involve installing solar panels and energy-efficient heaters and air conditioning systems in existing buildings as well as in two new facilities. The projects are being paid for by Measure C, a 2004 bond approved by Marin County voters that allocated $249.5 million for upgrades and retrofits at the college. In a resolution passed in July 2004 by the college's board of trustees, the school required that all Measure C construction on campus meet a series of environmentally conscious building standards set by the U.S. Green Building Council. Among the green projects: a geothermal heat exchange system that will reduce heating and cooling costs and a photovoltaic shade structure that will provide 50 percent of the energy needed to operate the newly renovated physical education building. "This construction will change the face of this institution," Superintendent/President Frances White said. "It is going to be an honor and a great privilege for a community college to offer students with facilities that are 21st century efficient." The modernization projects, to be done in phases, are expected to be fully completed in 2012. Construction and installation of energy producing photovoltaic shade structures, costing nearly $3 million, was completed this summer on the physical education building, which will reopen once reconstruction of the pool is finished this winter. The 16 steel canopies, measuring nearly 30 feet by 30 feet, will support 72 120-watt photovoltaic panels and will be connected to an energy generator that will help power the new Green Building Council-certified building. When finished, the panels will lean to the south so they can absorb as much sunlight as possible, said Leigh Sata, program manager of construction at the college. "There are also solar panels on the PE building's roof, which will help heat the pool."

Another project completed this summer is the geothermal heat exchange system. It involves a system of tubes that extend from 400 feet below ground to several buildings. The systems uses the Earth’s moderate temperature to either heat or cool the buildings by pumping water from the underground tubing through pipes built into the walls, ceilings and floors of classrooms and offices. Nearly 500 of these heating systems have been installed in schools across the country, according to the U.S. Office of Geothermal Technologies. The geothermal heating system will cost nearly $5 million, Sata said. The system will pay for itself in reduced energy costs in five years, said V-Anne Chernock, director of modernization at the school. Construction on a new fine arts building is scheduled to begin this fall, and soon after, work will begin on a science and math building, Chernock said. Both buildings will comply with Green Building Council standards. Preliminary plans for both buildings call for adherence to sustainable building features, including large windows to reduce the need for artificial lighting, energy-efficient appliances and drought-resistant landscaping. Because some of the college's buildings are 70 years old, some students are happy to see the modernization projects. "I'm r eally glad that this is being done," said James Hayes, a first-year philosophy major. "It seems like it's about time for this sort of thing to happen." San Francisco Chronicle – 08-06-09 by Justin Gillett E-mail Justin Gillett at metro@sfchronicle.com.



Sustainability Update from Equinox Landscape Patrick & Heather Picard

In partnership with Daily Acts, the City of Petaluma, and other local landscapers, Equinox Landscape helped transform unused lawn at a community recreation center in Petaluma into a water-saving, organic food forest. The three-day workshop at the Cavanaugh Recreation Center in May ‘09 was a collaborative effort to educate the public about water conservation and showcase ecological landscape principles. Over 150 volunteers participated in this seminal event. Equinox owner Patrick Picard, Designer Cynthia Sumner and Maintenance Division Manager Serena Estes worked with groups of volunteers teaching them about sheet mulching, earthworks, rain gardens and more. By using sheet mulching over the existing lawn, they avoided having to haul away debris into landfill. Old plant material was incorporated into bio-swales to sequester carbon, and food was planted in guilds designed by Patrick. Rain water that would normally run off the Cavanaugh recreation buildings into storm drains will now be redirected into swale trails that help raise the water table on the property and cut down the need for irrigation. Vegetables and fruits are growing for the neighbors, and native plants that draw in beneficial insects, such as butterflies and bees, now beautify the center.

workshop with Daily Acts to convert a neighborhood park/lawn in Cotati into a native, drought tolerant garden. These workshops bring together government, business and the communities in ways that create benefits for the earth, the city and the neighborhood. We are proud to be included in this alliance as a way to bring about change. For more information about theses workshops go to: ww.dailyacts.org.

SUSTAINABLE GARDEN SHOW COMING THIS FALL Equinox Landscape owner Patrick Picard is partnering up with sculptor and landscape designer Suzanne Biaggi for the first annual “The Late Show Gardens” this September, bringing together contemporary design with sustainable landscape practices. This unique show will have thought-provoking exhibits and lectures that demonstrate how modern garden designs can actively help address global climate change.

Daily Acts is currently working on the City of Petaluma to convert the lawn at City Hall. The government offices could become a neighborhood example of the city’s commitment to creative, sustainable landscape solutions.

The Late Show Gardens, happening September 18, 19 and 20 at Cornerstone Sonoma, is being created by an alliance of landscape designers and devoted gardeners from around the world. Patrick is excited to participate in this event as a practitioner of ecological landscaping. His contribution to Suzanne’s cuttingedge art garden exhibit includes a companion plant design and installation that is intended to educate attendees about plants that mutually benefit each other. We hope you can come to this exciting show and check out their work. For more information and tickets, go to: www.thelateshowgardens.org.

On August 22 and September 19 Patrick will be taking a lead role in a another transformative

Bertotti Landscaping will be participating in this event as well.

Dear Friend of the San Francisco Flower & Garden Show, The San Francisco Flower & Garden Show has new owners, and the great tradition of this world-class show will continue - at the San Mateo Event Center March 24-28, 2010. The new owners have selected a steering committee of four experienced Bay Area designers, contractors, and growers to act as advisers and aesthetic guides for the creation of the 2010 Show. They are Davis Dalbok, Tim O’Shea, Mike Boss, and Robin Stockwell. If you are interested in participating in the committee, please let me know. We are open to new members and opinions! I will continue as Show Producer. I am happy to say the new ownership has expanded and improved the Show with some exciting new ideas. We are working hard to put these plans in place. The show will have indoor and outdoor display gardens, an expanded children's section, tents outside for fun activities, an emphasis on green technologies and green living. I am very excited about the new directions - a greener show outdoors with edible gardens, food and wine. We all have a lot to accomplish between now and March. If you are interested in participating in the 2010 show in any capacity, please contact me and we can begin the process of figuring how best to fit you into the Show. I hope you all have been having a wonderful summer and spring! I am delighted to be working with you all again. Warm regards, Kay kay@sfgardenshow.com 415-595-3236

Sodding with Sedum and Succulents

ABOVE: This is a sedum mat. It works basically like sod, but instead of thirsty grass, it is made up of small succulent plants that use less water and are more interesting to look at. A downside is that it doesn’t work for high traffic areas, but withstands applications involving light traffic. It recovers very quickly, because cuttings break off and restart themselves.

These mats, which are not yet on the market, are being developed by the forward-thinking people at Altman Plants, the largest succulent and cactus growers in the U.S. Possible uses include throwing them up on bare roadside hillsides where they will require no more than biweekly watering. Developers are also using them for green roof tops or replacement lawns without the wait. Instant low-water ground cover! The sedum mats are grown by just scattering sedum plants on the mat. Anyone could certainly do that on his or her own, but it can take a year or so for the plants to grow in. Trials are still ongoing. Although not on sale to the general public, the mats will be available to landscape architects, and contractors. Part of a program, called “Raise the Roof,” originally designed the mats for green roofs. In California especially, and in dry western areas, green roofs often don’t take. Without enough water, they dry out. Since Altman is the largest grower of succulents, they devised modular panels or tiles that architects can specify for green roofs. But, after additional thought, they said what if we designed a mat you could put on the ground just like sod? Usually, sod, if rolled, will be dead in two days. With the sedum, they found they could roll it and it would last for three weeks. They dropped it on bare banks without any prep, the mats just took and rooted, which was a very exciting development. They can be designed and cut to fit different spaces, and even better, sedum doesn’t have the problem of weeds coming up. It isn’t necessary to weed after the plants are in or train maintenance people to know which are the weeds and which are the plants. Says John Bagnasco of Altman Plants, “Our purpose right now is to sell the mats commercially to landscapers, but we’re also looking at opening it up to the retail market. People can buy direct, but we are also looking at distribution through mass merchandisers. This is still a brand new product.” Altman tried different mats such as coconut fiber and were shocked at how well the sedum developed. It works well with micro climates, the succulents tolerate shade well. They grow taller in shade, so water can be cut back even more. In full shade, it can tolerate watering every three to four weeks. “We’ve tested as long as two months without water and they still look good,” continues Bagnasco. “But we really don’t recommend that.” Altman is still making the roof tiles 3’ x 3’ x 4” deep. The sedum mats are designed to be laid on a slope, which is ideal for freeways. The mats don’t get heavy, they quickly root at each node therefore stabilizing the slope. Although Altman is the largest grower of succulents, they’re also moving into plants that use less water, that look good, but are ecologically sound without sacrificing beauty.

For more information visit www.altmanplants.com

EDUCATION OPPORTUNITIES Training Program for Installers of Simple Greywater Systems October 5 - 9, 2009 - Greywater Design and Installation

Location: Bay Area Cost: $595 Contact: Laura Allen - laura@greywaterguerillas.com www.greywaterguerrillas.com


Classroom Hours: 40 hours Become a greywater installer for your area! This course is designed for people with either basic plumbing, landscaping, or permaculture skills who want to learn how to design and build simple, low-tech residential greywater systems. The course will cover five common greywater systems, how to determine which is appropriate for the site, and how to install them. It will also cover plants, products, and codes. Participants will be eligible to take an exam and conduct an installation, and be certified as a greywater installer. People certified will be able to have their contact info listed on the Greywater Action/Guerrillas website, a portal for greywater inquiries from across the country, and join a listserve of other installers to share info and experiences.

INSTALLATION TRAINING @ Buckeye Ranch Saturday September 26, 2009 The Field Training day in September can be used for CLT Preparation or just for employee enrichment. In a bad economy training is even more important then ever.

Call Connie to enroll your employees @ (707) 829-5487 Classes will be: Plan Reading – Tractor – Grading & Drainage – Instrument – Pavers – Plant ID

CLT TESTS SCHEDULE UPCOMING WRITTEN TESTS September 26 CLCA Headquarters, Sacramento, CA 8am-Noon Last date to register is September 11, 2009 December 5 CLCA Headquarters, Sacramento, CA 8am-Noon Last date to register is November 20, 2009

For more Information contact: CLCA State Offices @ (800) 448-2522 or visit clca.org

Quotes…. Those who trust us educate us. ~ George Eliot The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.~ Aristotle Education costs money, but then so does ignorance ~Sir Claus Moser


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LANDSCAPES UNLIMITED NURSERY 4330 Bodega Avenue, Petaluma, CA 94952 Phone: (800) 371-3300 Fax: (707) 778-0633

George Carlin Don't sweat the petty things and don't pet the sweaty things. One tequila, two tequila, three tequila, floor. I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, "Where's the self-help section?" She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose. If a deaf person swears, does his mother wash his hands with soap? If someone with multiple personalities threatens to kill himself, is it considered a hostage situation? Is there another word for synonym? Isn't it a bit unnerving that doctors call what they do "practice"? Where do forest rangers go to "get away from it all?" What do you do when you see an endangered animal eating an endangered plant? If a parsley farmer is sued, can they garnish his wages? Would a fly without wings be called a walk? Why do they lock gas station bathrooms? Are they afraid someone will clean them? If a turtle doesn't have a shell, is he homeless or naked? Why don't sheep shrink when it rains? Can vegetarians eat animal crackers? If the police arrest a mime, do they tell him he has the right to remain silent? Why do they put Braille on the drive-through bank machines? How do they get the deer to cross at that yellow road sign? What was the best thing before sliced bread? One nice thing about egotists: they don't talk about other people. How is it possible to have a civil war? If one synchronized swimmer drowns, do the rest drown, too? If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? If you try to fail, and succeed, which have you done? Whose cruel idea was it for the word "lisp" to have a "S" in it? Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of that song? If the "black box" flight recorder is never damaged during a plane crash, why isn't the whole airplane made out of that stuff? Why is there an expiration date on sour cream? If you spin an oriental man in a circle three times, does he become disoriented?

Profile for Michael OConnell






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