Monday, February 23, 2015

LA Native, March 1

LA Native will be at The Green Tent this Sunday!

Get The Facts...Going Native Makes Sense!

Did you know?
  • 20% of California's energy consumption is for moving and treating water.
  • Up to 70% of residential water goes to watering landscaping in our county.
  • Our landscaping is predominantly non-native tropicals and invasive species that consume on average seven times more water than our native plants.
  • Non-native plants need fertilizers, unlike our native plants that evolved in our local soil.
  • The abundant use of fertilizers is a huge source of pollution in Santa Monica Bay.
  • Landscaping with native plants doesn't cost more, and can even reduce maintenance costs.
  • We've lost 90% of our native songbird and butterfly populations in the last fifty years. This is no coincidence. A primary food source for most of these bird species is butterfly caterpillars. Nearly all the native butterfly populations can only eat the native plants. 

L.A. Native is a coalition that got MTA to increase the percentage of native plants on the Expo Line from under 1% to over 90%

LA Native began when Palms Neighborhood Council (PNC) transportation advocate Charles Miller realized there was little overlap between groups of people who are advocating for more sustainable landscaping choices and people advocating for more sustainable transportation choices, even though the goals of the two groups are generally complementary.

Now their focus is to see all public spaces landscaped exclusively with California natives and to get natives  promoted by programs like WaterWise and the LADWP Lawn Replacement rebate. They are working to educate people that there is no such thing as a "California Friendly" non-native plant, and other than edibles the path to sustainability requires that we use natives in landscaping.

It’s time to start making better choices for a sustainable urban environment. Please stop by on Sunday and have a chat.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Master Gardeners, February 22

It seems like they're a week early but February 22 really IS the fourth Sunday of February and that means another Green Tent visit from the UCCE/LA County Master Gardeners, 9 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.. 

Here’s what they’ve grown this month, plus you can pick up packets of seeds as well!  It’s all free—they’ve planted organic seeds, grown organically just for the Mar Vista community.

Due to an accidental overabundant planting they have ALOT of Broccoli Raab, an Italian favorite, with tasty shoots, buds and leaves. 
Click here for a simple delicious recipe.

Start your salad garden with the European Lettuce mix: A bouquet of reds and greens that are exceptionally heat tolerant.

Throw in some Glory Glory Frisee, also known as curly endive to add body, crispness and nutty flavor to salads.

Then top it off with Shelling Peas, heavy-bearing vines. Expect BIG yields! You can eat these with or without cooking them.

And Super Sugar Snap Peas, the chunky, sweet flavored pods and peas, with better disease resistance.

Or Oregon Sugar Pod Peas, tender, edible-pod snow pea ideal for stir fry, if they make it into the kitchen before you eat them. You can eat these without cooking too.

Then cook these up as a side dish: Heirloom Greens, Quick Stir Fry Blend. Use the “cut and come again” method. Plants will regrow for several more cuttings.

Swiss Chard, use the leaves like spinach and the stems like asparagus.  Heat tolerant!

Blue Borage, sky-blue starry flowers with a mild cucumber taste. Use as garnish and decoration. Also brings pollinators to your garden.

Don’t forget to Be WaterwiseClick here to see monthly gardening tips here: 
And remember to bring your empty plastic six pack “pony packs” to the farmers market so the Master Gardeners can fill them with plants to give away next month!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Green Communications Initiative, February 15

It’s Valentine’s Day so join GreenCommunications Initiative (GCI) at the Green Tent this Sunday as they BRING THE LOVE to us with their Walk It Mar Vista!  Play the Walk It! V-Day Challenge -- to correctly guess how MUCH TIME YOU CAN SAVE AND HOW MANY CALORIES YOU CAN BURN BY WALKING AROUND OUR NEIGHBORHOOD!  Think of how healthy you’ll feel (and how many pounds you can lose!!!) by choosing to WALK instead of getting in that darned car.  GCI will give you a much-deserved VALENTINE  for your efforts!

Walk It! is simple. Just choose to walk/bike/skateboard/hula hoop any errand or commute no more than a mile. The obvious benefits – better health, more exercise, weight loss, more time with friends, family, dog – add to the potential for $$ savings in lowered gas costs, no GYM FEES and supports our local businesses and community.  Most important, it’s a simple, feel good way to make a positive impact our environment.

Statistics indicate that the overwhelming majority of American commutes are short distance. A whopping 30% are between 1-5 miles. If we can Walk-A-Mile to reduce this figure, we can have a tremendous impact on the successful reduction of carbon in our atmosphere and ultimately, the effects of climate change. 

Walk-A-Mile’s Walk It! is the first in GCI's series of ConsumeLESS Makeovers.  

GreenCommunications Initiative is a nonprofit public benefit corporation devoted to people consuming less. 

True environmental change requires reduction of human material consumption on a scale massive enough to represent a tipping point. Communication is a process that by definition involves sharing. At the root of communication is a community. Together we must take the initiative to protect and preserve the health of our miraculous blue and green planet.

See GCI's Facebook page for more information.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Green Garden Showcase, February 8

The 7th Annual Mar Vista Green Garden Showcase is Saturday, April 25, 2015. Stop by the Green Tent this Sunday to learn more about it. There'll be maps of the featured neighborhoods and photos of some of the gardens you'll see. California native plants, edible plants, cacti and succulents, chickens... the Garden Showcase will feature all of these and more. 

At the Green Tent, you can also learn more about what makes a garden "sustainable," what invasive plants to avoid, and how to apply for the DWP rebate for taking out your lawn.

Sign up to volunteer! The Garden Showcase is organized by volunteers. The committee can use your help! Contact: