Wildflower Photography Workshop – April 10

March 23, 2010

Lewis Hill wildflower photographyJoin Pam Coz-Hill of Mike’s Quality Cameras for a wildflower photography workshop at Blue Oak Ranch in Springville. The class will focus on important aspects of close-up photography, especially applied to wildflowers. The class will begin at Mike’s Quality Cameras for a review of the types of cameras, lenses and accessories preferred by wildflower photographers. An emphasis will be placed on the crucial role of aperture, shutter speed and the resulting depth of field that enable creative control over photographic image making.

When: Saturday, April 10, 8:00am-4:00pm
Where: Meet at Mike’s Quality Cameras, 105 E. Main Street, Visalia, CA. The class will then carpool to Springville to take pictures.
Cost: $75
Other: Class is restricted to 15 people, so sign up today for this great class!

Check out a full course description. To view Pam’s cancellation policy, click here.

Download a registration form and return it to Pam Coz-Hill at Mike’s Quality Cameras.

Contact Pam for additional info: mqcvisalia@sbcglobal.net or by phone at (559) 733-3882.


Thank you to our 5K Earth Day Sponsors!

March 16, 2010

5k earth day trail runSpecial thanks to the following community businesses who are benefiting the environment with their earth-friendly services and generous investments in regional land conservation:

Earth Day Title Sponsor
Sempra Energy: Sempra Energy is working to provide clean power to North America, and developing and exploring generating electricity from energy resources such as solar energy and wind. http://www.sempra.com/.

Land Lover
Key West Family Plaza: Key West Shopping Center at Goshen and Akers

Conservation Partner
Hobbs-Potts & Associates: Hobbs-Potts & Associates does all types of insurance from Auto and Home to Health and Life to Commercial and Agricultural insurance.  They have the ability to shop around policies to many direct carriers, so they can find the best match of price and coverage specific to the needs of their clients.  735 W. Oak Ave., Visalia, CA  93291. (559) 713-6000.

Preserve Guardians
The Laundry Lady: Laundry Lady uses wet cleaning to expertly care for your finest garments and household goods. Wet Cleaning is an exciting, break-through process that was developed to replace ordinary dry cleaning. It’s revolutionary in that it uses water as the solvent instead of toxic chemicals. In fact, the process is so safe and gentle, you could bathe in it yourself! 3533 West Noble, Visalia, CA, 93277. 559-733-3632.

Visalia Cyclery: Visalia Cyclery is a cycling outfitter specializing in all kinds of bicycles – from entry level to high end road and mountain bikes, catering to the causal ‘around-the-block’ rider, as well as the ‘seasoned racer’. They have the largest selection of BMX and Beach Cruiser bicycles in the central valley. 1829 West Caldwell Avenue, Visalia, CA. 559-732-2453.

5K Trail Stewards

Buck Stove Fan & Spa: For 30 years, Buck Stove has been warming up local family homes and and contributing to environmental protection with the largest selection of quality hearth products on the West Coast. 1830 W. Caldwell, Ste ‘B’, Visalia, CA. 559-627-2205.

Four Seasons Handy Market: Small grocery store and gas station located at the corner of Goshen and Giddings: 443 N Giddings St. Visalia, CA 93291. 559-734-4204.

Kidd Accounting Services: Barbara Kidd, CPA. 559-739-1375.

Idea Graphics: Whether it is stationery, sales presentation materials, a small or large trade show display, or the creation of a completely new corporate identity and marketing plan, Idea Graphics is ready to serve you. 1921 E. Main St. Visalia, CA. 559-733-4149. http://www.visaliaidea.com/

Natural Springs Pool Service: Residential specialists in pool services. 559-732-3014, cell: 559-972-7272.

Sierra Bicycle Werks: Sierra Bicycle Werks is devoted to making your cycling experience as enjoyable as possible. They pride themselves in genuine, friendly, customer service that lasts a lifetime. They offer sales, service and accessories not only for the seasoned pro racer or recreational cyclist, but also to the family looking for that first bike for themselves or their children.  http://www.sierrabicyclewerks.com/. 123 E. Main Street, Visalia, CA. 559-741-0700.

Dr. Gerald Schneider: Dentist. 100 N. Stevenson St, Visalia, CA. 559-627-0292.

Valley CTO: Valley CTO  provides a set of technology services for small firms and businesses.  They understand that many companies don’t have IT departments and executive level technology decision makers.  They also know that you still have technology decisions to make.  Valley CTO is here to help you make a better decision.  Contact: 650-239-0312 or ValleyCTO@ValleyCTO.com. For more info: http://valleycto.com/contact_us.html

Watson’s Nutrition Center: Watson’s is a small, family-owned business that specializes in products that are organic, all natural, wheat & gluten free, great vitamins & much more. They also have a deli that serves up a variety of vegetarian and vegan sandwiches & burgers that will delight your taste buds with a secret garden out back to escape your busy life. http://web.mac.com/watsonshealthfoods/www.watsonshealthfoods.com/Welcome.html. 617 W. Main St., Visalia, CA. 559-732-3866.


And special thanks to the Visalia Runners who will be running the race clock and finisher’s chute, and helping us organize this great event!


VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES!

March 11, 2010

Spring Naturalist Training
Help Us Teach Kids about Nature! –
Saturday, March 27, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Thanks to a dedicated corp of volunteer naturalists, hundreds of children get to explore the valley’s ‘wildlands’ through the Kaweah Oaks Preserve Field Trip program every year. Volunteer naturalists lead students on educational nature walks, teaching them about the beauties of the valley’s native habitat.

If you are interested in sharing your love of the great outdoors with youth, please join us for the Spring Naturalist Training. You will learn about the preserve’s unique habitat and how to teach kids about it.

The training will convene at the Kaweah Oak Preserve’s picnic area.

Please RSVP with Laura at 559-738-0211, ext. 103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org.

Preserve Ranger Training
Be a Ranger on one of SRT’s Six Nature Preserves! –
Thursday, March 18, 9 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Saturday, April 17, 1 – 3 p.m.

Preserve Rangers get exclusive opportunities to make one of SRT’s nature preserves their own. Rangers visit the preserve of their choice for 1 – 2 hours every month. During each visit, the ranger records what they observe on the preserve, monitoring its wildlife, plant life, and overall status. This position is very special because five of SRT’s preserves are not open to the public, so Rangers get to have the entire preserve to themselves when they visit!

All Rangers are required to go through a training with SRT. Trainings will take place at the Kaweah Oaks Preserve picnic area. The training will cover plant and animal identification, Leave No Trace ethics, and current conservation issues. Plus, you will learn how to record and report your observations to SRT.

Please take note that dogs are not allowed at any of SRT’s preserves. We love dogs, but unfortunately they disturb the wildlife.

Please RSVP with Laura Childers at (559) 738-0211 x103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org to find out more details.

Milk Thistle Removal
Help Us Remove Invasive Species –
Wednesday, March 17, 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

We need volunteers to help us remove milk thistle from the Kaweah Oaks Preserve. Milk thistle is a small, prickly plant that is not a natural part of the preserve. It crowds out native plants, it’s a nuisance to hikers, and it just needs to go.

Requirements:

– Ability to bend and stoop repeatedly

– Ability to walk on uneven terrain

– Bring a long-handled shovel

– Bring heavy work gloves

– Wear pants and close-toed shoes

– Bring drinking water


Time:
March 17th, 9:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Location: Kaweah Oaks Preserve

Please RSVP for this volunteer position to receive more details. Contact Laura Childers 559-738-0211, ext. 103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org.

Seed Collecting Crew
Help Us Collect Seed from Native Flowers –
Date and Time TBA, Sign Up for Further Info

The Seed Collecting Crew will help us propagate native wildflowers by collecting seeds. The first seed collection day will focus on bush lupine, which produces a beautiful purple flower. Volunteers will learn how to identify bush lupine, its seeds, and how to effectively collect its seeds. It will take place in the Three Rivers area. Plus, it will be a great opportunity to meet Andrew, the newest member of SRT’s stewardship team.

The first seed collecting date will depend on the weather and, consequently, when the lupine starts producing seed.

Rogue seed collecting by knowledgeable persons is encouraged. SRT will use any donated seeds for habitat restoration projects and during its famous plant sales.

If you are interested in this position, please contact Laura Childers at (559) 738-0211 x103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org.

Nursery Construction Crew
Skilled Builders and Handy-people Needed to Re-construct the Native Plant Nursery – On-going Position

SRT’s nursery houses many of the native plants that are used for habitat restoration. Unfortunately, the nursery was heavily damaged by a recent wind storm, and it needs to be fixed up.

Volunteers are needed to work with Andrew, our newest land steward, to start the re-building process. If you’re good with tools and experienced in building large wood and metal structures, this is the perfect opportunity for you.

If you are interested, please notify Laura Childers at (559) 738-0211 x103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org.

Nature Day Planning Committee
Help Us Plan Our Summer Nature Day Event Series –
On-going Position

SRT is going to start planning its summertime Nature Day series in April, and we want your input. Nature Days are small educational events that can cover a broad range of activities and topics, such as Wildflower Walks, Star Gazing Parties, and Bat Talks.

Committee members will meet once or twice a season to plan the following season’s Nature Day series. We will discuss ideas for possible topics, activities, and lecturers.

To join the Nature Day Planning Committee, please contact Laura Childers at (559) 738-0211 x103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org.

Native Plant Team
Help Us Grow and Manage Native Plants –
On-going Position

It’s the season to start propagating plants, and we need all the help we can get. If you’re interested in learning how to grow and propagate native plants, this is the volunteer position for you.

This position is on-going, and the hours are variable. Work will be based at the native plant nursery at the Dry Creek Preserve near Lemon Cove, but it may also extend to other preserves. When you join the team, you will periodically be notified by email when help is needed.

To join the Native Plant Team, please contact Laura Childers at (559) 738-0211 x103 or laura@sequoiariverlands.org.

Accounting Clerk
Experienced Accountant or Bookkeeper Wanted –
On-going Position

An Accounting Clerk experienced in Quickbooks, general office skills, AR, AP, and PR is needed. This position is on-going, and we need a person who can commit to volunteering with us regularly.

If you are interested in this position, please contact Debbie Bratt at (559) 738-0211 x106 or debbie@sequoiariverlands.org.

Development Department Clerk
Help Us Contact and Thank Our Donors –
On-going Position

Donors are SRT’s foundation, allowing us to continue conserving land and providing environmental education in this region. Help us give our donors the appreciation and attention they deserve.

As a volunteer, you would call donors, thank them for their support, and conduct a brief survey with them. Then, clearly write down their responses and return them to SRT.

We need a volunteer with excellent verbal communication skills, professionalism and comfort talking on the phone.

This position is on-going with a flexible time commitment. A brief training at the SRT office is required. Then, volunteering can be done at home, preferably between the hours of 5 and 7 p.m.

If you are interested in this position, please contact Erica Tootle at (559) 738-0211 x104 or erica@sequoiariverlands.org.


1st Spring Lupine Seed Gathering Contest

March 1, 2010

Sequoia Riverlands Trust (SRT) is proud to present its first spring seed gathering event. We ask the public to help us gather seeds for the silver bush lupine (Lupinus albifrons), a beautiful California native that is an important food source for butterflies and other wildlife. In areas where development and/or cattle have reduced lupine populations, butterflies have also become more scarce.

As many of you know, Dry Creek Preserve is 152-acre former gravel quarry located just northwest of Lemon Cove. SRT has been replanting the preserve with native grasses, shrubs, trees and flowering plants, but we need lupine seeds to help the beautiful purple flower and native habitat flourish to its fullest potential. We will also be planting lupine at Blue Oak Ranch in Springville and Lewis Hill Preserve in Porterville.

We will award an embroidered button-down SRT shirt to the person or persons who collect the most seed (measured by weight).  Please gather seeds from the Three Rivers, Springville and Porterville areas (observing all laws regarding property rights – no fence-jumping, please) and make careful notes of the seeds’ place of origin (we will only replant seeds within 10 miles of where they were gathered so as not to affect local gene pools). Look for the flowers to go to seed sometime in late March. The blue flowers will fade and give way to a green seed pod, but they’re not quite ready. When the green pods turn brown, then they’re ready to be harvested. Please leave a few seeds on each plant so that local populations can re-seed themselves!

The window of opportunity for seed gathering is brief, so stay on the look-out. Monitoring lupine is a great excuse to pay more attention to nature and its marvelous cycles.

Please, no store-bought seeds.

We will propagate the fragile lupine seeds at our nursery, then replant as needed at the preserves, for the benefit of many species of wildlife. Any plants left over will be made available to the public at our fall plant sale.

Happy seed gathering!

Also, stay tuned to poppy seed gathering details, coming up next month.