Friday, August 22, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Workshop helps you design your landscape and eat it, too

Edible landscapes do double-duty for California gardeners, and can be beautiful, too. Rosalind Creasy/Courtesy photo

By
From page A5 | October 09, 2012 |

By Diane Nelson

Edible landscapes are growing like zucchini in the sun as more people recognize the health and economic benefits of designing their yards with pretty plants that taste good, too.

“Sales of fruits and vegetables have remained strong, even during this recession when sales of other plants have lagged,” said Ron Hoffman, owner of Morris Nursery in Riverbank, echoing the sentiments of many in the state’s nursery industry. “People enjoy growing their own produce and they want plants that do double-duty.”

And when they choose brightly colored edibles — like, say, Neon Lights swiss chard or Bronze lettuce — they can have their landscape and eat it, too. But designing and maintaining an edible landscape is easier said than done. How do you know what plants to choose? What if one plant needs different soil and more water than its neighbor? How do you keep the cat from pooping on your produce?

The folks at the California Center for Urban Horticulture at UC Davis and the UC Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Program are answering those questions and many more at several two-day, “train the trainer” workshops throughout the state. Funded by a grant from the UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, the program teaches the art and science of edible landscaping to master gardeners who, in turn, will help train the rest of us.

“Before you install an edible landscape, you need to assess the site and the user,” said Missy Gable, program manager for the California Center for Urban Horticulture. “How much time do you have to devote to gardening? What are your harvest needs? We brought together experts from diverse fields such as landscape architecture, horticulture, food safety and water policy to provide an overview of what’s possible with edible landscaping.”

The workshops are inexpensive — $35 for Master Gardeners and $65 for industry professionals. In exchange for their reduced rate, Master Gardeners sign an agreement to teach two classes within three months of their training — one for fellow Master Gardeners and one for the public. Cheryl Buckwalter, a professional landscaper and executive director of EcoLandscape California, attended an earlier workshop and called the experience “invaluable.”

“Today’s landscapes need to work harder than ever,” Buckwalter said. “They need to be water- and resource-efficient, functional and aesthetically pleasing. The Edible Landscaping Workshop not only showed me how to design the multi-functional landscape of today by incorporating edibles, I also feel qualified to educate my clients, the public and other professionals.”

The benefits of edible landscaping are bountiful. Parents, for example, love exposing their children to both the joy of gardening and the value of healthy food. Farmers appreciate that more people realize produce doesn’t grow on grocery store shelves. But without a few pointers, it’s easy to err with edibles. Sometimes, for example, our eyes are too big for our stomachs.

“Like me,” Gable said. “I’m a plant nerd. This summer I bought four varieties of zucchini because they were so cool. Believe me, no one needs four varieties of zucchini.”

No two yards or gardeners are the same and the course helps people customize their plan to meet their needs. Do you work 12-hour days? Maybe it’s better for you to help out at a community garden than plant too many edibles in your own back yard. Is your garden in full shade?

“Grow blueberries,” Gable said.

They’re pretty and tasty, too.

There is still room in five edible landscaping workshops this fall: Oct 11-12 in Santa Clara; Oct. 24-25 in El Cajon; Oct. 26-27 in Los Angeles; Nov. 2-3 in Fresno; and Nov. 30-Dec. 1 in San Luis Obispo. You can register and find more details at http://cchu.ucdavis.edu/events/edible/edible.

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

.

News

City to overhaul its sprinkler heads, other water-wasters

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
No easy task: History buffs still trying to save building

By Dave Ryan | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Putah Creek Council appoints new executive director

By Elizabeth Case | From Page: A3

Communitywide ice bucket challenge on Sunday

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A3

 
Parents’ Night Out features Vacation Bible School

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Afternoon tours of city wetlands resume Sept. 6

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Yolo County golf tournament enters fourth year

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

Saylor will meet constituents at Peet’s

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

 
Event will unveil mural celebrating food justice

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Prunes take center stage at last agri-tour of the summer

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

 
In need of food? Apply for CalFresh

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

Can you give them a home?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Wolk bill would require reporting of water system leaks

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

Writing couple stops at Davis bookstore

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

 
Explorit: Final Blast show returns for second year

By Lisa Justice | From Page: A5

 
World travelers

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

.

Forum

Weightlifters causing a racket

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
Bridging the digital divide with computational thinking

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

No support for militarization

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
A better use for this vehicle

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Police are our friends, right?

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Wage plan has a big flaw

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

.

Sports

Watts likes what he’s seen in keen Aggie DB competition

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Watney and McIlroy struggle at start of The Barclays

By Wire and staff reports | From Page: B1

 
Light-hitting Cats fall

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

Giants win nightcap in Chicago

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Sports briefs: Big West soccer coaches have high hopes for UCD men

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B8 | Gallery

.

Features

.

Arts

‘If I Stay’: Existential angst

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11

 
Davis Chinese Film Festival to kick off with 1994 favorite

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
Rock Band campers perform at E Street Plaza

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

Natsoulas to host mural conference

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

 
Yolo Mambo to play free show

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

.

Business

Car Care: Teenagers not driving safe cars, study shows

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

 
Car Care: Feeling the summer heat? Your car battery is too

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A7

Three-wheeled Elio gets closer to going on sale

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Friday, August 22, 2014

By Creator | From Page: B6