All posts tagged Earth Day

Transition Guest Booth at 2013 Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase

11375 Matteson Ave. — Showcase Garden #5F — Transition Town Guest Booth

Saturday, April 20, 2013
10 am – 4 pm
SELF-GUIDED TOUR of 100 RESIDENTIAL GARDENS
Throughout our Community!

Tour Maps available at:
Showcase Central — House #4H >>
-or-
Transition Town Guest Booth — House #5F >>
11375 Matteson Avenue, L.A. 90066 

This annual Earth Day event in Mar Vista offers self-guided tours of 100 home gardens that exemplify environmentally friendly alternatives to the classic lawn. These local homeowners, renters, schools and churches have all taken the leap and converted their thirsty green expanses into drought-tolerant landscapes and edible gardens. The tour covers the spectrum from homespun do-it-yourself projects to professionally landscaped environments—including urban farms, sleek architectural hardscapes, composting & vermiculture, rain harvesting, aquaponics, chicken coops, sculpture gardens, hummingbird gardens… you name it! This year’s tour places special emphasis on the critical need for ocean friendly gardens and California native gardens that support much needed pollinators such as honey bees and monarch butterflies. It’s a great day to gather ideas and inspiration for your own future lawn conversion!

The International TRANSITION TOWNS movement will be represented at the special guest booth at house #5F, 11375 Matteson Ave., Los Angeles CA 90066It’s a collaboration between two local chapters: TCC (of course) and our neighbors, Transition Mar Vista/Venice. So if you’re not in a hurry to see the other 99 showcase gardens, there’s plenty of al fresco patio areas here to sit down, pour a lemonade, and hang out to chat with like-minded people about community resilience, food security solutions, permaculture, alternative building, water harvesting, food forests, and much more.

Learn about Transition Mar Vista/Venice’s pay-it-forward Good Karma Gardens work parties—they’re a great way to get started if you want to learn how to grow your own food! And if you need even more motivation to drop by, come by to meet seedling master Matt Van Diepen (of Mar Vista Farmers’ Market fame!) who will be on hand with FREE veggie seedling giveaways and advice on how to include more home-grown edibles in your life.  Owner of Home Grown Gardens L.A., Matt is one of GKG’s skilled project coordinators.

This year, House #5F features dwarf fruit trees and berry bushes, a brilliant display of spring wildflowers, stealth veggies interspersed with drought tolerant natives, meandering flagstone pathways and do-it-yourself bistro-style hardscaping all done under strict budgetary parameters—everything cheap, recycled, scavenged and free!  For helpful Do-It-Yourself tips, read the event report and access the resource links from last year’s Showcase workshop D.I.Y.: Yes You Can!: Creative Lawn Conversions on a Budget.

Rainwater Capture

RAINWATER CAPTURE
(SEE VIDEO!)

Another feature at this location is an unusual “hybrid” active and passive urban rainwater harvesting system.  Last winter the homeowners hosted a barn-raising-style Work Party to install the system. (SEE VIDEO HERE!) The volunteer crew, wrangled by Transition-friendly landscape architect John Tikotsky, created a passive diversion “reservoir” to help recharge the aquifer, helped install unique vertical tanks (an alternative to conventional rain barrels) for active catchment, and positioned a subsurface diverter pipe to feed the percolation area. The reservoir berms were planted with California native currants (ribes family) and shade happy leafy greens as the beginnings of an edible food forest understory. All this, in one day—a true demonstration of the power of community!

PEDAL-POWER! FREE BICYCLE PARKING
In efforts to support our community’s shift to a fossil-free future, TCC and our friends at the Culver City Bicycle Coalition are co-hosting a “pop-up” bike corral at House # 5F. Celebrate Earth Day in style: Visitors are invited to lower their carbon footprint by cruising the garden tour by bike!

Showcase maps are available at the Transition Guest Booth or Showcase Central at House #4F at 3635 Grandview Blvd.

2012 Showcase Bike Corral

Garden Showcase D.I.Y. Talk — Helpful & Inspiring!

A short report on TCC’s participation in Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase which occurred on Earth Day—April 21st, 2012:

The Bike Corral came in handy as the TCC Bike Tour of the Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase  arrived en masse at the first garden on their itinerary.

We made it! Michelle leads the TCC Bike Caravan to House #1 on the Green Garden Showcase Tour

 

After lemonade and snacks, the group settled in for TCC’s presentation, “D.I.Y.: Yes You Can! Creative Lawn Conversions on a Budget.”   Attendees picked up some helpful tips for finding inexpensive and creative ways to convert a conventional lawn into a drought-tolerant landscape.

This Showcase location exemplifies the D.I.Y. philosophy:  it features a bistro-style patio hardscape, “urbanite” terraces, meandering flagstone walkways and a homemade park bench, dwarf fruit trees & stealth edibles mixed in with drought tolerant natives, plus two methods of rainwater capture—all accomplished D.I.Y. and under strict budgetary parameters (everything cheap, recycled, or free!).

The TCC bike caravan then rode five blocks west to the next Showcase garden on their itinerary, Yuling’s fabulous Chinese herbal garden, before heading to points beyond. Perhaps a full report of the Bike Tour will appear here soon…

Below is some information from the hand-out from D.I.Y. presentation,  including resource links… Enjoy!

• • •
D.I.Y.: Yes You Can! Creative Lawn Conversions On a Budget
(Recycled • Used • Repurposed • Unwanted & Abandoned: It’s All Good!)

Presented by Transition Culver City
Saturday, April 21, 2012 • 11:30 a.m.

Design:

•1st Step is Observation: How does nature function on your property thru the seasons? (sun, wind, water).
• Identify your Zones around your home & personal usage patterns
• Will the project be gradual, step-wise, or a grand transformation?

Gathering Materials:

SOIL, COMPOST, MULCH, & OTHER HARDSCAPING MATERIALS:
• Neighbors, Noticing Your Environment, Word of Mouth in the Community
Freecycle, Craig’s List, Free Green Exchange, etc.
Our Time Bank: Sharing Economy (from materials urbanite to tool borrowing)
Free Mulch & Compost from LA City
• Mulch: Ask local tree trimming companies working in your neighborhood
• Soil: look for local remodel activity
• Venice Learning Garden (donations appreciated) — mulch & compost

THE PLANTS:
• Sharing clippings & seeds with neighbors
Venice Learning Garden — just ask what needs cleaning up… and reap the benefits by leaving with clippings & rootballs
Seed Library of Los Angeles (SLOLA) — non-GMO, heirloom seed — come swap & learn about seed saving!
• Unlabeled plants at the gardening shops— deep discounts
• Once again, Freecycle, Craig’s List, Free Green Exchange, etc.

Repurposed & Make It Yourself Items:

“Stacking Functions” = many yields from a single element
Examples: Benches, bistro planters, pavers, bamboo trellises and gates, “hugelkultur,” greenhouse.

Getting The Work Done:

Work parties — Barn Raising Style
Our Time Bank — work trade
• Teen or college-student labor from the neighborhood or recommended by friends

 

 

Bike Tour of the M.V. Green Garden Showcase + D.I.Y.: Yes You Can! Presentation

E A R T H   D A Y   2 0 1 2
Saturday, April 21

10 am – 4 pm

Join us on a bike tour of the Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase on Saturday, April 21st, 2012, including a FREE D.I.Y. presentation!

TCC Bicycle Meet-Up:
11:00 a.m.
The fountain in front of Vet’s Park
(corner of Culver & Overland)

Our first stop on the Tour is House #5H (see description), for refreshments & a presentation by TCC:

 D.I.Y.: Yes You Can!
Creative Lawn Conversions on a Budget
11:30 a.m.
11375 Matteson Ave., LA 90066 

TCC's D.I.Y. Presentation @ the 2011 MV Green Garden Showcase

Bike Parking provided for the TCC Bike Tour!

This year’s D.I.Y. presentation by members of TCC will include creative ideas, resources & encouragement for converting a conventional lawn to a drought-tolerant landscape without breaking your budget. This location exemplifies the D.I.Y. philosophy: it features a bistro-style patio hardscape, “urbanite” terraces, meandering flagstone walkways & a homemade park bench, dwarf fruit trees & stealth edibles mixed in with drought tolerant natives, plus two methods of rainwater capture—all done D.I.Y. & under strict budgetary parameters (everything cheap, recycled, or free!).

 After the presentation we will make our way to several other Showcase homes  (we’ll post the TCC bike tour route map soon). The plan is to cycle back to Vet’s Park sometime in the mid- to late-afternoon.
Remember to pack fluids & snacks or a light lunch (since we’ll be out mid-day).
RSVP Michelle: 310-780-1051

 

Hello April: Earth Day Events, Lots of Bike Stuff, Garden Tour & more

Earth Day in Culver City > April 14th-23rd
LMU > April 14-16 Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts at Loyola Marymount University is pleased to announce its first annual Interdisciplinary Symposium, which will be held from April 14-16, 2011. In partnership with the Seaver College of Science and Engineering with contributions from the School of Film and Television this inaugural symposium draws upon LMU’s substantial strengths in environmental justice, urban ecology, and environmental studies, the focus of the Symposium is The Sustainable City.
Details here: The Sustainable City
Los Angeles EarthFest > Saturday, April 23 at Kenneth Hahn Recreation Area 4100 S. La Cienega Blvd., L.A 90056.

Culver City Bicycle Coalition’s Family Ride > Saturday April 16th, 10am-1pm
This month CCBC will tour the area around Linwood E. Howe Elementary School, which will be made safer for walking and biking through a Safe Routes To School grant. Here’s the route map. The ride will start and end on the Linwood Howe yard, 4100 Irving Place. Come at 10am and bring a sack lunch – we’ll have a picnic on the school yard after the ride. Helmet required.

Our Timebank Potluck & new member orientation > tentative date Saturday April 16th
This month’s potluck is tentatively set for Sat. April 16, 11 am – 12:30 pm (with orientation at 10 am) at the Venice Learning Garden (Venice Blvd & Walgrove Ave.), but we have not confirmed this with the Learning Garden yet. So don’t write it down in ink; please use pencil (smile). Please bring a dish to share and don’t forget your own plates, cups and utensils (and serving utensils). Please park on the street. The parking inside the gate is reserved for those whose physical condition makes it hard to walk. Check out Our Timebank’s blog for more info & other great community initiatives.

Confident City Cycling > Saturday, April 30 & May 7, 10am-2pm
Whether you’re a beginning rider or an experienced cyclist, there are techniques you need to know in order to be safe & confident on the streets. This is a great class taught by licensed instructor Ron Durgin over 2 days: April 30 & May 7, 10am-2pm at Linwood E. Howe Elementary, 4100 irving Pl. Culver City 90232. Cost: $75 per person.
Pre-register with Sustainable Streets by email at info@sustainablestreetsla.org or by phone at 424-288-1747.
See flyer for details about the class: Confident City Cycling

Bike to the Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase > Saturday, April 30th from 12:30 to 4pm
If you’re not taking the class, join TCC on a ride to the Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase. Need inspiration to transform your yard into a water-saving food friendly garden? We’ll meet and visit selected gardens that feature water harvesting, food production, backyard chickens and more! Meet at Culver City Hall at 12:30 to bike to Mar Vista. At 1:30 we will present the kick-off to our GrassUProots Campaign at the Home of the Blades Family, 11375 Matteson Ave. (Map 1-K of garden tour homes). Come hear about garden transformation from folks who have jumped in with their own muddy boots!
Return to Culver City at 4pm.
Not able to join us by bike? The Showcase is from 11am-4pm: check out Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase to plan your self-guided tour.

Legislative action > NOW!
Here is the latest from our friend Andy Shrader of the Clean Seas Coalition – he co-hosted and presented our Bag It! screening in February:
I just returned from lobbying on Oceans Day and thought you all might be interested in the ocean-related bills that might affect our area making their way through the state senate and assembly.
Letters to our State Senators and Assemblymembers would be in order, ASAP!

AB = Assembly bill
SB = Senate bill
( ) = the bill’s sponsor
weblink = more information about the bill

—————————
AB 88 (Huffman) – Requires mandatory labeling of
genetically-engineered salmon that are sold in California.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AB_88/20112012/

WSJ Poll about eating GMO Salmon:
http://online.wsj.com/community/groups/question-day-229/topics/would-you-eat-genetically-modified-salmon
————————–

SB 568 (Lowenthal) – establishes a ban on polystyrene containers (styrofoam).

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/SB_568/20112012/

—————————

SB 482 (Kehoe) – restore beach water quality monitoring funds that
expire this year; and release State Water Board Prop 84 fudning for
stormwater pollution reduction and green infrastructure projects.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/SB_482/20112012/

—————————

AB 1112 (Huffman) – Provides increased support for oil spill
prevention and response programs.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AB_1112/20112012/

————–

AB 752 (Brownley) – Mandates preparation of a sea level action plan
for public trust lands, and continued funding for Public Beach
Restoration Program, a crucial annual source of funding for beach and
shoreline restoration projects.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AB_752/20112012/

————————-

AB 376 (Fong, Huffman) – prohibits the shark fin trade in California,
which will help save sharks.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AB_376/20112012/

————————-

AB 971 (Monning) – extend the life of the voluntary Sea Otter tax
check-off so that critical Sea Otter research and conservation can
continue.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AB_971/20112012/

————————

AB 1299 (Huffman) – protects crucial ocean forage species and fisheries.

http://www.aroundthecapitol.com/Bills/AB_1299/20112012/

————————–

Hope to see you at these great events – Happy Earth Month from the TCC team!