California Native Plant Society

CNPS eNewsletter

September 2013

CNPS Announces New Horticulture Program Director

Susan KrzywickiFor the first time in its nearly 50 year history, CNPS has hired a full-time director for the quickly expanding Horticulture Program. CNPS sought an inspiring individual who is knowledgeable and passionate about California native plant horticulture and could help chart the course of California’s oldest native plant gardening program. After an extensive search, Susan Krzywicki was selected due to her dedication to promoting native plant gardening and her success inspiring and teaching others.

Susan is already known by many in CNPS as an active volunteer and board member in the San Diego Chapter. Her professional marketing background manifested itself in a variety of successful outreach projects: the San Diego Native Garden Tour, the chapter’s recent Native Gardening Symposium, and building an active and lively Gardening Committee.

CNPS also expresses a deep appreciation to outgoing volunteer Horticulture Program Director Laura Camp, who was instrumental in expanding the program and encouraging members to get involved for many years.

The Horticulture Program is looking forward to input from members throughout the state. To learn more about the program or have someone speak at a local chapter meeting or event, email or call Susan at 619-318-4590. To contribute, please go to and click "Donate".


Increasing Biodiversity with Native Plant Wildlife Habitat Gardens

Nancy Bauer

BumblebeeOf all the many reasons to plant California natives in our gardens - for creating a sense of place, for their beauty and adaptability, for their drought tolerant qualities, and certainly for increasing biodiversity - their ability to help save our ecosystems and the bird and insect species that depend on them is, for me, the single most important reason to grow native plants. Our suburban, urban, and rural gardens are fast becoming a last refuge for many wildlife species, such as songbirds, butterflies, bees, toads, frogs and other beneficial creatures, that have lost habitat due to human development. In some cases, cultivated gardens that offer a rich diversity of native plants may offer more resources, such as foraging opportunities for birds and other wildlife, than surrounding degraded wild lands.

Continue reading here.


A Mast Year? The Form and Function of the Iconic Acorn

Jennifer Jewell

AcornJennifer Jewell is a professional garden writer and host of "In a North State Garden", a weekly Northstate Public Radio and web-based program celebrating the art, craft and science of home gardening in Northern California. This article was originally published August 24, 2013 on the "In a North State Garden" online journal.

Who doesn’t love an acorn? Who can resist bending over to pick up a fresh acorn newly fallen on the ground, looking at it carefully, tucking it into a pocket?

Recently a friend wrote to me about noticing the first acorns on the driveway - ripe acorns, harbingers of the changing season. Looking out my kitchen window the day just before this note, I had noticed the abundant acorns on the blue oaks in my garden. The day after this note, another plant friend wrote enthusiastically that he had collected acorns from some notable oak species from around the area - oracle oak (being a cross between two species), Brewer’s oak and Tucker’s oak, among them - some of which seem to hardly ever put on a good acorn crop. It looks like it could be a mast year for acorns in Northern California.

Continue reading here.

CNPS Horticulture Events Calendar

CNPS logoFall has arrived- is your local chapter hosting a plant sale, garden tour, presentation, or workshop this weekend? The CNPS Horticulture Events calendar is searchable by CNPS chapter and type of event. The calendar is updated frequently, so be sure to check back for events in your area.

The G2 Gallery Presents Exhibit Benefiting CNPS

From the Ashes: A California Wildfire Recovery, photographed by Michael Caley, will feature never-before-seen images following the devastating 2009 Station Fire in the Angeles National Forest. With special access as a U.S. Forest volunteer, Caley was in a unique position to document every state of the forest's recovery and restoration. From the Ashes will display the entire spectrum – from natural, pristine beauty to landscapes filled with ash and charred trees to an increasingly healthy forest on the path to recovery. The opening reception will be held on November 9 from 6:30 - 9:00 PM. Admission is $10 at the door and includes wine, hors d'oeuvres, and complimentary valet. All proceeds from admissions will be donated to CNPS. RSVP here. The G2 Gallery is located at 1503 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, CA 90291. From the Ashes will be on exhibit through January 5.

Theodore Paine Foundation Seeks Full Time Executive Director

As a result of the growing demand for native landscapes and habitat preservation throughout LA combined with Theodore Payne Foundation's expansion plans, the Foundation Board has decided to transition from a part time to a full time Executive Director. The position description together with details for submitting applications are available at

Chapter Events - A Sampling from Around the State

To connect to your local chapter, or to find other events in your region, see this page for a list and map of CNPS chapters.

Alta Peak Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, October 5, 9:30 AM - 4:00 PM

CNPS members are admitted 30 minutes before the general public at 9:00 AM to get the first pick! Not a member? Join at the door! A great selection of native plants and a wide selection of books will be available for sale. For more information, call Janet Fanning at 559-561-3461.

Dorothy King Young Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale - Gualala
Saturday, October 5, 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

Lots of locally native plants available for sale and experts on hand to answer questions. We'll be on the deck behind the Gualala Hotel. Gualala Hotel, 39301 S. Hwy 1, Gualala 95445.

El Dorado Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, October 5, 9:00 AM - 1:00 PM

We offer grasses, perennials, shrubs and trees suitable for the foothills of El Dorado County as well as seed packets of native spring annuals, and native plant bulbs. In front of County Government Buildings A and B at 330-360 Fair Lane, Placerville, across from the library. 330 Fair Lane, Placerville 95667.

North Coast Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, October 5, 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Bayside Grange, 2297 Jacoby Creek Rd. Fall is planting time! Be ready for the fall rains! Find a selection of beautiful, hardy, wildlife-friendly native plants for your yard. Luxuriant ferns, varied ground covers, cheerful perennials, dense shrubs and trees, and graceful grasses from local forests, meadows, dunes, and wetlands, as well as favorite species from greater California, will be available. Experienced gardeners will be on hand to help you select. Cash or check accepted. Proceeds benefit the North Coast Chapter of CNPS. 707-826-0259 for info.

Willis Linn Jepson Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, October 12, 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Perennials, shrubs, ground covers & trees for a drought tolerant, wildlife friendly and attractive garden. Benicia City Park, at the corner of 1st and Military West in Benicia. For more info call 707-747-5815 or visit this link for a plant list.

Shasta Chapter

Annual Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, October 12, 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM

The Shasta Chapter has over 1,300 California native plants for sale, in addition to books, posters and notecards. Horticulture/Farm area of Shasta College, 11555 Old Oregon Trail in Redding, CA. For more info, call 530-221-0903.

East Bay Chapter

Native Plant Fair 2013
Saturday, October 12, 10:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Sunday, October 13, Noon - 3:00 PM

Annual fall sale of local native plants and crafts. For a plant list, click here. A free talk, "Bird Songs in the Native Garden" by Theo Fitanides, will be Sunday at noon. Native Here Nursery, 101 Golf Course Dr., Tilden Park, Berkeley, across the street from Tilden Park Golf Course.

Napa Valley Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday and Sunday, October 12-13, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Preview Party for CNPS Members, Friday, October 11, from 7:00 - 9:00 PM. Fall is the best time to plant native plants. Cooler weather and winter rains let the plants get established before the heat and dryness of summer. As always, we will have an extensive selection of hard-to-find native plants for sale that will be ready for your Fall gardening fun. Experts will be on hand to answer your questions. All proceeds of the sale benefit the maintenance, improvement, and educational programs of the Martha Walker Garden. Free admission to Skyline Park during the sale. Social Hall, Skyline Park, 2201 Imola Ave., Napa, CA 94559. For more information, including the members-only preview party, see this link.

Sierra Foothills Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, Ocotber 12, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, and seeds available. Knowledgeable gardeners will be on hand to answer your questions. Books and posters will be available for sale. Audubon Society of Tuolumne County will have hand crafted bird and bat houses on hand. Join CNPS at the Plant Sale and get $5 off your plant purchase! Rocca Park, Main Street, Jamestown.

Santa Cruz County Chapter

Fall Native Plant Sale
Saturday, Ocotber 12, 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

For members of CNPS or the UCSC Arboretum, the sale is open from 10am to 4pm. For members of the general public, the sale opens at 12 noon. Not a member? Memberships will be available at the gate. Eucalyptus Grove at UCSC Arboretum, 1156 High St, Santa Cruz.

Kern County Chapter

Program Meeting: Josie Crawford, Education Program Director
Thursday, October 17, 7:00 PM

Come learn about the tools and activities CNPS has and is developing for chapter education committees, teachers, and naturalists to teach, engage, and support students of all ages as well as parents and the curious public. Plant ID begins at 6:00 and program meeting at 7:00. Hall Ambulance Community Room, 1031 21 St, corner of 21st and N Streets, Bakersfield.

Orange County Chapter

At Home with Natives 2013: Sustaining California with Native Gardens
Saturday, October 19, 2013, 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM

Please join us for this one-day event! Our presentations focus on sustainable, California native plant garden design. Native plants need far less water, care, pesticides, fertilizers, and overall maintenance than conventional landscape plants. The program will cover the basics of getting started on your own native landscape and includes lunch provided by the Saddleback College Culinary Department. Get all your native gardening questions answered by top regional native plant experts! Registration: $55 per person / students with current student ID $25. To learn more or register, click here.

Bristlecone Chapter

Bitterbrush Planting/Indian Fire Rehab
Saturday, October 19, 9:30 AM - 1:00 PM

Last summer the Indian Fire burned over 10,000 acres of sagebrush/bitterbrush habitat east of Mono Lake. This area is important for sage-grouse and other wildlife. Come out and help plant bitterbrush shrubs, needlegrass, and other native plants that were grown at the Deepest Valley Native Plant Propagation Center. Meet at 9:30 at the Mono Mills Interpretive Site on Highway 120 East. Mono Mills is approximately 9 miles east of Highway 395. Many of the roads within the burn area are sandy, four-wheel drive is recommended. We can leave cars at the Mono Mills site and carpool from there. Bring water, lunch, and appropriate outdoor clothing. For more information contact Martin Oliver at 760-872-5035.

San Luis Obispo Chapter

Field Trip: Montaña de Oro
Sunday, October 27, 10:30 AM

Join leaders from the Morro Coast Audubon Society (MCAS) and the California Native Plant Society (CNPS) for a walk along the coastal strand looking for shorebirds and coastal dune plants. Meet at 10:30 am at the end of Sand Spit Road in Montaña de Oro State Park. Restrooms are available at the Sand Spit Parking Lot. Bring water and dress in layers for the changing weather. A hat, sunscreen, and shoes adapted to walking in loose sand are recommended. For more information: call Bill at (805) 459-2103.


Contributors and Photo Credits

  • Susan Krzywicki
  • Laura Camp
  • Nancy Bauer
  • Jennifer Jewell
  • Snowdy Dodson
  • Stacey Flowerdew
  • Mark Naftzger
  • Bob Hoffman Photography - Susan Kryzwicki
  • Harmina Mansur - Bumblebee on Cleveland Sage 'Meiko Watkins'
  • Jennifer Jewell - Acorn from a blue oak, or blue oak hybrid (Quercus douglasii)




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