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Welcome to the Sonoma County Gazette ARCHIVE of PAST EDITIONS. Our NEW WEBSITE is up and running, so GazExtra is serving as your path to archived articles. Thanks for being part of our Sonoma County community...stay in touch...e-mail me - VESTA

Thursday, March 25, 2010

350 Garden Challenge Sonoma County

TUES, MARCH 30th 7-9pm

Imagine a garden on every block in Sonoma County! On a single ambitious weekend, May 15th and 16th, we will transform 350 Sonoma County landscapes into bountiful gardens, which save water and emissions, grow food and habitat, and promote greywater and Low Impact Development (LID). Daily Acts, GoLocal, and iGROW Sonoma, with the generous support of Sonoma County Water Agency and countless community partners and the cities of Sonoma County are spearheading this initiative to involve everyone in homegrown food production! By choosing the number 350, we’re participating in the international campaign to unite the world around solutions to the climate crisis.

Please join us Tuesday, March 30th, from 7 to 9 pm to:
• hear from sponsors and supporters
• meet others organizing the event
• get details about projects, key organizers, and the May weekend
Sonoma County Water Agency Meeting Room
404 Aviation Blvd., Santa Rosa

Every community will have at least one higher profile model garden, be it an entire block transformed into edible landscapes, a water efficient annual vegetable garden, a perennial food forest, a native drought tolerant prairie or a garden irrigated by greywater. These educational sites will model specific techniques that produce food and save water.

Local businesses are getting involved by offering discounts and donating materials, including a potential donation of wine barrels, potting soil and tomatoes for container gardens in areas with limited access to land. We will emphasize local economic development to generate support for our local businesses.

With hundreds of new gardens being installed this spring, we intend to highlight these efforts and build a community movement, while also challenging individuals to grow even more gardens. Helping create a homegrown local food system directly addresses climate change by shortening the miles food travels to the table, and improves the health of county residents by increasing accessibility of fresh food. We encourage everyone to join by registering their garden and volunteering at or calling Beth Dadko at 707-565-6681.


Daily Acts and the City of Cotati have formed a unique partnership to offer Cotati residents these incredible workshops throughout the year. These April workshops are just the beginning. Come tour a greywater system and hear from greywater experts in June! Join the Cotati Garden Wheel and initiate your own lawn to food transformation in your own backyard! Come to these April workshops to build your skills, then contact the City of Cotati to get rebates and resources to help you save water and money, and live more sustainably!

Workshop: Transform Your Thirsty Lawn!
Saturday, April 3rd 10am –– 4pm, Free for Cotati Residents, $10-20 non-residents
Location: Pocket Park, corner of LaSalle and Loretta Avenues, Cotati
Register by calling 707-789-9664 or emailing
In this incredible hands-on workshop, we’ll kick off the gardening season and our Cotati Water Conservation Education Series by completing the lawn transformation we started in 2009. Patrick Picard, award-winning landscape designer, will revisit the permaculture principles incorporated in this 5,000 square foot neighborhood park. We’ll cover topics such as fruit tree guilds, insectory and habitat-producing plants, and the soil-building and earthwork techniques that Cotati residents and Daily Acts implemented at the park last fall. We’ll learn about, Carex pansa, a drought-tolerant sedge alternative to turf, and plant a model native grass lawn at the site. We’ll talk about Cotati’s Cash for Grass program, and show how the model garden at Pocket Park ties in with this larger city effort to save water and build resilient and rich community landscapes!

Workshop: Transform your Thirsty Lawn: Sheet Mulching 101
Sunday, April 18th 10am––2pm, Free for Cotati residents, $10-20 non-residents
Annually in the US, millions of pounds of pesticides are used and billions of gallons of fuel consumed in lawn care. But there’s no need to rip out your lawn, transport it to the landfill, buy more soil, and waste time, money and emissions! By composting your lawn in place, it mimics a natural forest’s process of soil building and provides a host of benefits – saving water and money, building soil, suppressing weed growth, reducing herbicide and pesticide use and much more. We will discuss easy-to-find local waste and recycled resources to inexpensively turn your yard into fertile ground for growing the water-savvy garden of your dreams. We will cover the benefits of sheet-mulching, local incentive programs and how to do it. Then, we’ll get some hands-on practice at Cotati’s beautiful Demonstration Garden smack dab in the middle of town as we put sheet-mulching theory into weed-subverting action!

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