Sunday, June 13, 2021

When I needed a new home for some tiny oak trees, a local school program agreed to plant them for me


My "oak babies."
I live near a huge Valley Oak that drops oodles of acorns in my yard every year. I usually pick them up before they sprout, but this spring I found at least a dozen tiny trees happily growing in pots left outside. I couldn’t plant the seedlings in my yard, but I also couldn’t stand to just toss them in the green waste bin. So I asked my fellow tree lovers for ideas, and one of them pointed me to the staff at a local school program who happily agreed to plant them.
 
That was cool.
 
When I arrived with my seedlings at the Redwood Valley Outdoor Education Project, Erich Sommer was there to show me the spots he carefully picked out for the trees.
 
“We we were trying to think about where they could get some full sun, but still get some protection as well,” he said while standing next to one of the holes he already dug. Since I was a bit disappointed we couldn't plant the trees right then, he offered to take pictures of them once they were put into the ground. “Or you could come back and visit your babies.” (I loved that he called them my babies, because while I certainly felt that way about them, I wasn't going to be the first to say it!)
 
After some of the trees were planted, Maureen Taylor, education coordinator for RVOEP, sent me pictures as promised. She said I delivered far more seedlings than she had expected, but she enjoyed gently separating their roots in preparation for planting, though only a few were put into the ground before the weather got too hot.
 
I’m taking the rest home to baby on my porch until the fall, after we get some rain, she said.

Taylor said the program’s staff was inspired to begin planting oaks after a crew from Cal Fire helped them clear tree limbs and other wildfire fuels from the property. Then we looked at all the empty land and thought about what we wanted to put back.

Knowing how much of the local wildlife depends on oaks — caterpillars who eat the leaves, the birds who eat the caterpillars, plus the deer, squirrels and, of course, acorn woodpeckers who depend on acorns for food — Taylor said they began an Oak Restoration Project, and happily folded my trees into the mix.

 
 
And what was also cool? I was particularly inspired to find a home for the tiny trees when a family member sent me an article from the New York Times called, of course, “Why you should plant oak trees.”
 
“Oaks support more forms of life and more fascinating interactions than any other tree genus in North America,” writes Douglas W. Tallamy in his new book “The Nature of Oaks: The Rich Ecology of Our Most Essential Native Trees,” which explores a year in the life of an oak tree, and the different forms of life it supports each month.
 
 
 

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

My Grandmother's Journals: June, 1996

On a bicycle in 1940, age 24.
In tiny notebooks, my grandmother wrote down each day when she woke up, where she ate breakfast, what movie she went to see, the mail and phone calls she got, then what she read and watched on TV before bed.
 
In 1996, she was 80-years-old and living alone in a mobile home park near Pleasure Point in Santa Cruz, Calif. But I wouldn't describe her as lonely; she was an extremely independent and persnickety woman whom I never knew to live with another person or even a pet. (I wrote more about her life in an earlier post.)  
 
In June of 1996, she was watching a lot of tennis and drove to Southern California to visit a woman named Mina who was raised in the same Masonic home as my grandmother in the 1920s and 30s. In June of 1940, when both women were working for the "motor vehicle department" in Los Angeles, they rode their bicycles together from LA to San Diego.
 
That was cool.
 
Even cooler, a short newspaper story headlined "Gals on the road" describes Yvonne, then 24, and Mina, whose age I don't know, leaving LA at 5:30 a.m. on June 2 and arriving in San Diego at 3 p.m. the next day.
 
Yvonne, left, and Mina.
"They never had so much fun, they told us," the reporter notes. "Dreariest part was walking their bikes up Torrey Pines Grade... (and) they had trouble convincing autoists they didn't want a lift, especially gents with mischief in their eyes. Highway hornblowing impressed them. Truck drivers unanimously gave a friendly double toot, (while) most autoists blasted a disparaging 'Get out of the way' at them."
 
 
Saturday, June 1, 1996
Awake 6. Forgot to pay rent! 
Ate at Western place near Greybears, too expensive. Decaf $1.10!
Home 8:50, tennis. Chang vs. Edberg.
Paper, news. Ran X-Files tape.
To show, "I Shot Andy Warhol." Well-done. Good acting.
Bed early after yard work.

Sunday, June 2, 1996
Up 8:30. Finished cutting around stones.
Sampras won over Agassi. Seles won. Courier won.
Worked on book, DMV.
Hot, no wind. Stayed in! Read, "The Cat Who Read Backwards."
Caught cold?
Bed 9:30. Slept fair.

Monday, June 3, 1996
Watered lawn, replanted aloe. Short roots.
Donut/coffee at corner. Not as bad as yesterday.
Sewed, washed blue parasol. Washed white slacks again!
To Drug Emporium, got cough drops, candy!
Walked on cliffs.
Watched Law & Order, Cybill, news. 
 
Tuesday, June 4, 1996 
Breakfast Kmart, got more Dinty Moore (sale at 1.59)
Home, tennis. Seles lost, Sampras vs. Courier. Emotional win for Sampras. Interviewed on French TV, he cried. Would not do U.S.
Took pink dress to Glad Rags. Owner said blue blouse was worn!
To Gottschalk's, paid bill. Got throw rugs.
News, walked, windy. Long, short boarders?

Wednesday, June 5, 1996
Breakfast BK.
No tennis watching, not too interested in players.
Typed page for Mina's letter. 
To show, "The Arrival." Some good parts. Digital? Aliens arrive, take our shape, etc.
To Farmers Market, got peaches, nectarines. Home, warm nectarine. Delicious.
Read papers. Lunch at Boston Market, caesar salad.
News, Law & Order. Bed 10:30, no sleep until 12:30.

Thursday, June 6, 1996
Awake 3, 5, up 9. Tennis.
Worked in here after going to OSH, got stand for fern and weed/feed.
Rearranged some items, put African sculpture with bird.
To Albertsons, got corn, candy!!
News, Home Improvement, A&E Crime Scene.
Ate here: corn, yogurt, muffin, brownie.
Watched P&P. 

Friday, June 7, 1996
Slept good. Up 9, ate here. Corn heavy?
Taped tennis. Cleaned east side of motorhome and car.
Shower, haircut. To corner, talked about Pol Pot.
Ran tape, Sampras tired, nothing left.
To Scotts Valley. Got gas, gave books to Goodwill.
To show, "Phantom." Special effects good.
Home, ran tape of P&P. 

Saturday, June 8, 1996
Awake 7, up 8:14. Breakfast BK.
Tennis. Graf won 19th Grand Slam. More than Martina, Chrissy.
Worked on books, changed tablecover, put brown one on Marge's table for ceramics.
Drove Rodeo Gulch, nice mobile home, private road.
Walked 7 to 7:30. Read a bit.
Bravo, Woody Allen's "Hannah and Her Sisters."
Finger better?

Sunday, June 9, 1996
Up at 6 a.m. for tennis. Over at noon.
Rested, to mall. Looked for cover or scarf. Used one from Bali.
Home, some NBA. Bulls vs. Sonics.
Hot, stayed in. Some French, "60 Minutes."
Taped Dances, ran some Romeo & Juliet.
 
Tuesday, June 11, 1996
Up 9, to county building for supervisors' meeting. Wrong time!
To Zachary's, met Carol. She will drive me to doctor's for cataract. 
To Logo's {used book store now gone}, put books in, then back to supervisors.
To library, left 24 books for donation.
To mall, got "Blizzard." Home 4:30 p.m., diarrhea about 6:30.
Ate corn & cereal.
Watched "Cracker," Frasier.

Wednesday, June 12, 1996
Donut & coffee at corner. BP at Louden.
To show, "The Rock." Fast. Saw Carla's chair in preview of "Phenomenom"' with John Travolta.
Mail, letter from Mina. Called her.
Watered lawn, put green sweep on west side.
Freda's son-in-law taking porch steps off today.
Swapped Marilyn Monroe poster and pix of Paris. Like it better.
 
Thursday, June 13, 1996
Ronn Owens back. Off for "Diversity" class; called it California psycho-babble.
To Carl's. Sun out 10:30. 
Cut jasmine bush back, needs more.
Read papers, letter from Prudy.
Dodgers(6)/Atlanta(3) on TBS. Another game tomorrow.
Walked on cliff 7:15 to 7:45.  
8:30 MTV, Madonna Evita. Tosca, 2 1/2 hours.

Friday, June 14, 1996
Ronn points out Mayor Brown's bid to control patronage jobs.
Up 9, breakfast donut at 41st.
Cut more from jasmine bush.
Shower, hair.
Watched U.S. Open. Tiger Woods had bad day Wednesday, made up. Makes cut OK.
To Long's. Dodgers vs. Atlanta.

Saturday, June 15, 1996
Taped "Triumph of the Nerds."
Up 8, breakfast here. Dodgers vs. Atlanta, also U.S. Open.
Fertilized flowers.
To show, "Cold Comfort Farm." Stephen Fry.
Home 3 p.m., ate, ran "The Lady Vanishes," Margaret Lockwood, Michael Redgrave. Good.
To laundromat, home 9:30. ESPN sports news.
 
Sunday, June 16, 1996
Up 8:30, felt good. Watered lawn, ironed some. U.S. Open.
To Kmart, bought new lamp for bedroom, throw rug for front room.
Home 1:30, golf, Royal Ballet.
Next "Blind Spot," with Joanne Woodward, strong mother, 1993.
Walked East Cliff, measured 32nd to 41st.
Read "Master Builder," Ibsen. Not good sleep.

Monday, June 17, 1996
Up 8:30, breakfast Lyon's. 
To Kmart, refund on throw. Too much! Got $18, then got 2 pair white sox, hat, more cookies.
Home, worked on '93 and '94 trips. Poirot. 
Walked East Cliff, feeding time: pelicans, gulls. Waves very small. Man at small house on 36th working at building shelves?
To Longs, got TV Guide. To Kinkos, used three-hole punch.
Dodgers rained out, Cybill rerun. Ballet, some news, bed.
 
Tuesday, June 18, 1996
Appt. for eye exam. Bring plastic glass and S.S. card! Take extra glasses.
Up 9 a.m., breakfast donut/coffee at corner. Talked about TV with man with diabetes. Worked at Cabrillo, lives in Watsonville.
Drug Emporium, got three-ring binder, groceries at Albertsons.
Dinner at Senior Center, ate chicken. Nice group.
Walked on East Cliff. Donut shop waved!
Frasier, news, bed.

Wednesday, June 19, 1996
Call motel at Pismo Beach for 2 nites.
Up early am with diarrhea, 3 a.m. to 5 a.m. Ate here.
To mall, paid Mervyn's, had coffee, muffin.
To library, looked at map for Baltimore. Checked out Cold Comfort Farm.
To Wendy's, ate salad. Tired, lazy. Walked 8 to 8:30.
Some French, news. Bed. Read some!

Thursday, June 20, 1996
Watered all pots out and in, fertilized.
Kmart for breakfast. 
Noon news. Mail: Package from Mina, books and French cassette.
Stopped for ice cream, none at corner. Had coffee and jam crumble?
Mary came in, looked at Cambodian wedding pictures. Lovely colors, rent costumes.
Home, news. No Mystery! Watched The Seagull til 1 a.m.

Friday, June 21, 1996
Breakfast donut.
Paid fone bill. Card to Carla.
Man at Thrifty hit me for money.
Stayed in, some TV, news, Geraldo.
Forgot to walk, do it tomorrow.
Called Justine, she had cold. She to Napa?
Bed, tired.

Saturday, June 22, 1996
Up 9 a.m. Breakfast BK. 
Home, shower, hair. Washed clothes.
To show, "Once Upon a Time ... When We Were Colored."
Drug Emporium, refill for photo album, AA batteries.
Longs, photo battery, Kodak film.
Home 4 p.m., read papers. Some TV, news. 
Bed, some crossword. Slept good.

Sunday, June 23, 1996
Take cassettes: Madonna - Susan, Michelle Pfeiffer, Track 29, French, Pavarotti.
Could not find tablets of Mylanta?
Breakfast at corner. Girl liked my shirt?
Home, packed, ready 11:30 a.m. Read crossword puzzle.
Justine called at 1:45 p.m. Late. I left 2:30 p.m. At Pismo 6:30 p.m. Called J, not there.
J called after 9:30. Tired, to call again in a.m.

Monday, June 24, 1996
Awake 7:30, Wimbeldon. Courier, Chang, Agassi out.
Justine called, met for lunch at Fresh Choice. She to nap.
To dinner, show. "Dead Man" with Johnny Depp.
Hotel 1 a.m. Not good sleep.
 
Tuesday, June 25, 1996
Toilet leaked next door. Called Mina, left 9:30 a.m.
Stopped at Santa Claus, lost, asked repair men.
Arrived Mina's 4:30 p.m. Cat was injured.
Watched ballet, Desperately Seeking Susan.
Bed 10:30, warm. Cat on my bed.
 
Wednesday, June 26, 1996
Awake 7, up 8. Breakfast here.
To shops selling used clothes, Mina got coat, grey 1/2 jacket.
Ate at pub, fish and chips.
Home about 2, talked. Watched Fab. Baker Boys.
Mina tired, legs hurt. Leave tomorrow!
Nice weather, cool. Mina to bed 9:30 p.m.
Trader Joe's for usual.
 
Thursday, June 27, 1996
Slept good, no cats. Had cereal, breakfast.
Walked to bank, video store (closed).
Talked a bit, then to gas station. 
Used a red wagon to pull TV out.
Left Fullerton 11:45 a.m., to Larry/Prudy's 12:30 p.m. Lunch at cafe, 1 - 2.
Made good time, so continued home, arrived 9:05 p.m.
TV, news, bed. Slept til 5 a.m.!

Friday, June 28, 1996
Up 9:30. Some unpacking, then to corner. Woman angry. {She wrote something in shorthand I can't translate}
Kmart: TV Guide, make-up, antacid. 
Longs, Xerox. (5 free!) Albertsons, fruit.
Paid Mastercard and $ to credit union for Justine.
Picked up mail, mailed discount to Julie.
TV: Spencer! News, walked. Watched X-Files, rerun, taped Egyptian Program.

Saturday, June 29, 1996
Up 7:30. Watered lawn. Shower, washed hair.
Coffee & croissant at corner.
Tennis, Sampras won, 4 sets.
To library, looked at Mayo for leg cramps; Orange County Yellow Book.
Ate at Golden West, show, "Hunchback of Notre Dame." Disney.
Home, hot, hot. Got caeser salad at Wendy's.
Ran Egyptian tape, 2 hours on mummies, A& E. Taped 2 hours more on mummies.

Sunday, June 30, 1996
Rent tomorrow.
Up 8:30, walked on cliff. Hot, hot.
Croissant at corner. Home, tennis. 
Got book from library, hot. Sat outside from 3 to 4.
Taped Star-TNG, washed car. Read.
3.5 quake about 9:30 p.m. off Pacifica.