Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Ballona Wetlands - June 3, 2018


...an environmental treasure in our own back yard 

Photo of Great Horned Owl by Jonathan Coffin
You may have heard about the 600+ acres of the Ballona Wetlands just to the south and west of Mar Vista. But have you visited this wild habitat where coyote and the beautiful and rare White Tailed Kite hunt?

Drop by the Green Tent on Sunday, June 3, to learn about this fragile mosaic of different habitats: seasonal ponds, wet meadows, salt pannes, sand dunes and prairie grassland. 

Photo of Coyote by Jonathan Coffin
Biologist Roy Van de Hoek (perhaps you know him from the Feathers & Foliage walks in Mar Vista or have seen his Blue Bird houses in our trees) and Marcia Hanscom, Executive Director of the Ballona Institute will be on hand to talk with you. Ballona Institute is known as "The Voice for nature on the Los Angeles Coast."
Photo of one of the historical sloughs at 
Ballona Wetlands by Marcia Hanscom

Click here to learn about the threats and treasures at Ballona. And watch this video to see just some of the miracles at the water's edge.

According to the Drawdown data, Coastal wetland ecosystems are one of the top 100 solutions for reversing Global Warming.
Relative to their land area, they sequester huge amounts of carbon in plants aboveground and in roots and soils below.

Coastal wetlands can store five times as much carbon as tropical forests over the long term, mostly in deep wetland soils. 

Learn about Ballona Institute's latest campaigns, including the most important one of all - the threat that bulldozers we once chased from the Ballona Wetlands are threatening to return! Stop by to learn what YOU can do to help save the Ballona Wetlands again!

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Master Gardeners May 27, 2018

Get your garden ready for summer veggies! Even though it’s a grey May, and June gloom’s just ahead, there's still time to get that summer garden going. And the UC/CE LA County Master Gardeners  will be handing out their lovingly-grown seedlings and seeds — all for FREE! 

Join them on SUNDAY, May 27 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and bring your garden questions and dreams. They’ll be giving away: 

Two kinds of green beans: Emerite Pole Beans (stake these), long and strong; and Bush French Filet Beans (aka haricots vert), those slender, little delicacies.

And get ready for pickles! Heirloom Lemon Cucumbers
and Straight Eight Heirloom cucumbers. 

Need some super greens? Renee’s Seeds Summer Perfection Spinach was bred to stand up to summer heat and is easy to harvest with straight up leaves; and Baby Tuscan Kale will satisfy those who love dark leafy greens, raw in their salads or sautéed. Cut and come again: when the leaves are 4-5 inches long, snip 'em for salads and watch them grow back again for an abundant and healthy harvest!

Slow Bolt Cilantro will give you that bright one-of-a-kind herbal kick that enhances Thai, Indian and Mexican food. And it won’t go straight to seed (bolt) in summer’s hot sun. 

What would summer be without TOMATOES! Container Super Bush (no cage needed) and Pandorino Italian grape tomatoes will make your summer picnics juicy, joyful, colorful and delicious!  

And yes, Virginia, there will be Zucchini — Astia Container Zucchini that produce small, easy to pick summer squash that won’t sprawl all over your garden.

Last but not least everyone’s favorites: Sun Samba Sunflowers! 

Don’t forget to check out Be Water Wise for inspirations, practical ideas and water
conservation planning.

And please bring along those empty plastic six packs, so the MGs can keep filling them with the seed they love to grow and you love to take home with you.  Any color will do!

SPECIAL PREVIEW FOR NEXT MONTH (JUNE)   Save space in your garden for Rhubarb! MGs planted up some Rhubarb from heirloom Italian seed company Franchi. Get ready for those big, red, tangy stalks that are excellent for crumbles, pies, jams and oh, so much more. (Don’t eat the leaves—just the stalks!)
You’ll be able to choose Fresh Culinary Chives (heirloom seeds, of course) to add to your quiches, baked potatoes or vinaigrettes. 

Friday, May 18, 2018


Get a preview of the upcoming Mar Vista Art Walk at the Green Tent!

Created as a means of improving the walkability of our neighborhood, The Mar Vista Art Walk is a fun, FREE celebration of all the arts.  More walking = fewer cars + less greenhouse gas + better health! 

Designated one of Mayor Garcetti’s “Great Streets”, the 1-mile stretch of Venice Blvd between Inglewood Bl – Beethoven St. will be transformed by its current theme, VERTICAL!  
It's all about Venice board sports -- skateboarding and surfing --
 and our Mar Vista/Venice connection to Dogtown and ZBoyz! 

The June 7 Mar Vista Art Walk is once again on its regular Thursday night schedule -- opening at 6 p.m. and closing at 10 p.m. Special activities for families with pre-school aged children start at New School West/ and A Kid's Place preschools at 4:30 p.m. There'll be extra daylight hours -- probably til 8 p.m and great weather. So keep that in mind as you plan your activities.

The schedule of remaining 2018 Mar Vista Art Walks is:
  • Thurs. June 7, 6-10 p.m. Theme:  VERTICAL!
  • Thurs. September 6, 6-10 p.m.  Theme:  SCIENCE + ART
  • Saturday, November 24, 11 a.m.-10 p.m. (all day event for Small Business Saturday)  Theme:  INNER GIVING
The Mar Vista Art Walk is a joint effort of environmental nonprofit Green Communications Initiative (GCI) and the community of local artists, with the enthusiastic support of CD-11 councilmember Mike Bonin, the Mar Vista Neighborhood Council, Mayor Eric Garcetti’s “Great Streets” Initiative, the Department of Cultural Affairs, Michelle Pine Rappoport-KW Realty, KW Realty-Silicon Beach, RSI, Earthstar Creation Center and the M & R Vest Foundation.

Visit the Mar Vista Art Walk page on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook or go to http://www.marvistaartwalk.org for more information.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Playhouse Art L.A. - May 13

Come to the Green Tent this Sunday and a create a beautiful card that your Mother and Mother Earth will both love!

Playhouse Art L.A., an eco-friendly kids’ art studio in Mar Vista, will be at the Green Tent on Mother’s Day, May 13, with a super-fun and easy project using food scraps from your kitchen.  

What do you do with those last few shriveled clementines or all the leftover limes and lemons from a cocktail party?  Make art! 

Made from citrus fruit, non-toxic food coloring and old cereal boxes, these cards keep kids safe, reduce post-consumer waste and create a lasting memory for a very special day.

Interested in doing your own DIY cardmaking?  The Playhouse Art L.A. staff will be happy to share their tips so you can easily run this project on your own.

Playhouse Art has fun, eco-friendly after-school art classes and tinkering workshops. Check them out at www.playhouseartla.com or on Instagram at @playhouseartla.  Have fun!

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Drawdown - May 6

Global is Reversible!

Reducing Food Waste - Solution #3
Saving the planet from global warming can seem overwhelming, but fortunately a collection of top-notch scientists and researchers have collected data on what actions are already working and ranked the top 100 solutions in order. Many of them are simple steps that you may already take.  

Are you a member of the Clean Plate Club?  Do you select food mindfully and store or give away what you cannot finish? Come to the Green Tent this Sunday, May 6, from 9 to 2, brag about what you are already doing and learn more action steps to reverse global warming.  Contribute a "leaf" to our Drawdown Solutions Tree and leave with a free gift.    

Not sure how to make your new commitment stick?  Get complimentary coaching tips from certified wellness coach and Green Committee co-chair Jeanne Kuntz.