With the new ADA (American with Disabilities Act) compliant path completed, students from the UC Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning Dept, ASLA (American Society of Landscape Architecture) student chapter came to the garden for a design workshop and came up with a planting plan of California native plants which they are going to plant. But first we had to clear ivy, blackberries, and poison oak from the site, as well as open up the view by pruning some of the redwood trees in the area. We are waiting for the rain before we start planting. Hopefully that will be very soon. A step will be designed and built out of redwood that leads to the greenhouse. Plants and materials will be purchased with a money from The Green Initiative Granting Fund.
charrette, a design workshop, to design the new handicap ramp area. The design is currently being created with all the input that came from the charrette along with other comments from students familiar with the site but unable to attend the on-site design workshop. [nggallery id=216]
A topographical model of Blake Garden was made and donated by students in U.C Berkeley Landscape Design 101. The model aided the students in developing their project "Revealing the Landscape" that recently was installed in the garden. The model will be a great addition as a teaching tool for future students and for visitors to get a sense of our terrific hillside garden.
The Mini Maker Faire was held Sunday at Park Day School and Studio Art Center in Oakland. We were asked to come and give a demonstration. Our demonstration was making origami pots out of non toxic newsprint (San Francisco Chronicle) and starting California native flowers seeds in anticipation of the winter rain.
On a glorious fall afternoon, Chris Grampp (Chair of Merritt College's Landscape Horticulture Department) brought his Landscape Sketching class to the garden where they spent most of the day drawing.
Approximately 20 area students from the Leaf Academy came to the garden to help us mulch around the creek where we have been working on eradicating invasive ivy and black berries. The mulch is from a Monterey pine tree that fell recently in the parking lot. We had the small branches chipped up and piled. The mulch will help to prevent weeds from growing, increase the organic matter in the soil and hold in water from evaporating from the bare soil. The students also worked on sculptures with Zach Pine in the Create-With-Nature-Zone.
[In]Land, a summer program in the U.C. Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning has started for the summer. Their first project is "Revealing the Landscape" at Blake Garden. Students in teams of 2 or 3 tour the garden and then respond to a site with a temporary installation or intervention. Most of he projects will remain up until Fri. July 26.
Kindergarten students from Crestmont Elementary School in Richmond taught by teacher Robin Hart-Poindexter came to the garden for a tour on Wednesday. Our tour included investigating the garden with the five senses, looking at the redwood trees and the wetland and talking about habitats and life cycles . We also spent some time in the Create with Nature zone building objects from natural materials from the garden . The students worked collaboratively and individually building small teepees, shelters, sculpture and musical instruments which were demonstrated, time machines, thrones, and pathways. Each student or student group described the materials used, the process and the title of their works. Students were particularly interested in connections and attachments such as tying, wedging, inserting.
Our two intern students from Albany High School's EDSET (Environmental Design, Science, Engineering and Technology) program, finished up for the semester this week. They are working on planting wetland native plants, edging and re-grading the path beside the wetland.
Two graduation ceremonies were held in the garden this weekend. On Saturday, May 18 a reception and awards ceremony was held for the graduating students from the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning. The graduating students are from the Master of Landscape Architecture, the Master of Urban Design, and the Bachelor of Arts in Landscape Architecture programs. On Sunday, May 19th, the Conservation Resource Science students celebrated their Alternative Graduation. The band Gemini Journey accompanied the ceremony.