Rss Feed
Tweeter button
Facebook button

Archives for February 12, 2016

Saving water and blooming all year round

Water-wise gardens, popular during the drought, do not have to be a colorless compromise, according to Roberta Barnes, who teaches science-based gardening in Palo Alto. Planned right, they can be a great source of year-round blooms.

California native plants and others from similar climates beautify a water-wise garden at different times throughout the year, said Barnes who will be leading a seminar, “Success with Low-water Ornamentals,” at Rinconada Library in Palo Alto on Feb. 18, starting at 7 p.m.

“Low-water plants from Australia usually bloom in winter,” she said. “Then it’s Mediterranean rosemary in late winter through early spring, naturalized tulips in spring, water-wise roses from late spring through summer, lavender in summer, California fuchsia in late summer through early fall, and correa from October all the way through next spring.”

The seminar will cover how to design a water-saving garden with plants that bloom all year round and how to add low-water plants to a regular garden by hydro-zoning, the practice of clustering plants with similar water requirements in an effort to conserve water. The free presentation is part of a series sponsored by the Palo Alto Library and the nonprofit University of California Master Gardeners of Santa Clara County.

Water-smart gardening has already caught on in Palo Alto. Resident Jane Foglesong said she and her husband are adding native plants to their garden because they are attractive, require less water and chemical fertilizers, encourage beneficial insects and aid in the pollination of fruit trees.

“At present the native plants are integrated with other plants that need more regular watering, but over time we will add more natives, replacing those that need more water,” Foglesong said.

To grow low-water plants, Barnes said it’s best to start when the soil is damp, before the end of winter rains, which means there is still a little time left this year.

“One thing to keep in mind is that these plants still need a little water especially in their first year. ‘Low water’ doesn’t mean no water,” Barnes said.

As for how often one should water these natives, Barnes said, it varies from plant to plant.

Palo Alto resident Sue Luttner said her family changed their landscaping to eliminate the need for irrigation.

“When our first son was born in July of 1988 and I found myself with no time to shower, let alone water the yard, I let the lawn die,” Luttner said. “We replaced it with native plants or plants native to similar climates.”

Luttner called columbines and zauschneria “big winners” among the low-water plants at her house because they keep reseeding themselves. She also has plenty of herbs in her garden, including lavender and rosemary.

Palo Alto resident Pamela Chesavage said her family has a mix of natives and edibles in their front yard. The native plants needed very minimal hand watering after the initial installation and no additional water after the third year.

“I’d encourage folks to try to design their gardens themselves,” Chesavage said. “Going to the class on the 18th would be a good start, but then I’d encourage folks to check out some books on California native plants, figure out which ones they like, measure their yards, and then start figuring out how to do the installation themselves.”

Chesavage added that installation is by far the costliest part of changing a landscape, but it’s not hard for amateurs to do.

Walking in the Master Gardeners Demonstration Garden on Center Road in Palo Alto recently, Barnes passed by a variety of low-water plants: bell-shaped correa flowers in blush pink, periwinkle rosemary flowers, yellow coneflowers and coral-pink grevilleas. In the distance, a hardenbergia vine covered the fence with pinkish purple blooms.

“In my view, a water-wise garden is more interesting than a regular one,” Barnes said. “It’s amazing how low-water plants conserve water with either small or fuzzy leaves. It’s also fascinating to observe the differences between regular and water-wise roses.”

Gardeners who aim to save water don’t have to replace their entire yards.

Callie Elliston, a master gardener who lives in Palo Alto, said her family replaced the lawns with native plants that only need water once a month. But they retained lemon, apple, persimmon and pineapple guava trees, along with blueberry bushes, for screening purposes and to save on re-landscaping costs.

“Now we have a glorious spring and enjoy a sustainable garden that provides shelter to native pollinators and small birds,” she said.

Elliston added a plug for fellow master gardener Barnes’ seminar: “Roberta is one of my favorite speakers — an excellent teacher, knowledgeable, with a keen sense of design.”

What: Success with Low-water Ornamentals with master gardener Roberta Barnes

Date: Thursday, Feb. 18

Time: 7-8:30 p.m.

Where: Embarcadero Program Room, Rinconada Library, 1213 Newell Road, Palo Alto

Cost: Free, no preregistration is required


Article source:

From permaculture to perennials: Garden authors at the Northwest Flower & Garden Show

There’s a lot to learn at this year’s Northwest Flower Garden Show, Feb. 17-21 in Seattle.

Garden experts with books published by Portland-based Timber Press will be conducting book signings and leading how-to seminars inside the Washington State Convention Center.

Topics that can benefit novice gardener to a well-seasoned veterans and everyone in between include:

  • Kathryn Aalto of “The Natural World of Winnie-the-Pooh: The Extraordinary Natural History of the Real Hundred Acre Wood” will read from her book on Wednesday, Feb. 17 and on Thursday, Feb. 18 she will talk about “The Beloved Hundred Acre Woods: The Natural World of Ashdown Forest.”
  • Dan Benarcik, a horticulturist at Chanticleer Garden in Wayne, Pennsylvania, and co-author of “The Art of Gardening: Chanticleer,” will talk about the book on Thursday, Feb. 18 and on Friday, Feb. 19, he will talk about design principals of the Chanticleer pros for home gardeners.
  • Jessi Bloom, owner of N.W. Bloom Ecological Landscapes and co-author of “Practical Permaculture” and “Free Range Chicken Gardens” will talk on designing a garden with practical permaculture on Wednesday, Feb. 17 and on Thursday, Feb. 18, she will talk about gardening for serenity.
  • Mark Brody, an artist, art educator and author of “Mosaic Garden Projects,” will talk about getting started on two-dimensional mosaic art on Wednesday, Feb. 17 and on Thursday, Feb. 18, he will talk about making three-dimensional mosaic art.
  • Linda Chalker-Scott, Washington State University associate professor and author of “How Plants Work” and “The Informed Gardener,” will talk about the science behind the amazing things plants do on Wednesday,
    Feb. 17 and on Thursday, Feb. 18, she will talk about rooting out problems before you plant.
  • Ruth Rogers Clausen, co-author of “Essential Perennials” and author of “Dreamscaping,” will talk about small space solutions on Friday, Feb. 19 and on Saturday, Feb. 20, she will talk about easy-care perennials.
  • David Deardorff and Kathryn Wadsworth, who are writers, photographers and co-authors of “What’s Wrong with My Houseplant?” will talk about the best houseplants on Friday, Feb 19.
  • Kristin Green, author of “Plantiful,” will talk about yesterday’s plants for today’s gardens on Saturday, Feb. 20 and on Sunday, Feb. 21, she will offer a a Plantiful Garden Guide.
  • Vanessa Gardner Nagel, a designer and author of “Designer’s Guide to Garden Furnishings,” will talk about companionable plants on Friday, Feb. 19.
  • Kelly Norris, director of horticulture at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden and author of “Plants with Style: Captivating Choices for a 21st Century Garden, ” will talk about garden royalty on Wednesday, Feb. 17 and on Thursday, Feb. 18 about plants with style.
  • JJ Pursell, a naturopathic physician, owner of The Herb Shoppe and author of “The Herbal Apothecary,” will talk about how to grow, harvest and make medicine from your garden on Wednesday, Feb. 17 and on Thursday, Feb. 18 about making herbal preparations from your garden.
  • Richie Steffen, curator of the Elisabeth C. Miller Botanical Garden and co-author of “Plant Lover’s Guide to Ferns,” will talk about designing with ferns on Friday, Feb. 19 and on Saturday, Feb. 20 about protecting vital wildlife and pollinators.
  • Marty Wingate, author of “Landscaping for Privacy” and “The Potting Shed Mystery Series,” will talk about a Shrub for every garden on Saturday, Feb. 20.

–Homes Gardens of the Northwest staff

Stay in the loop. Sign up to receive a free weekly Homes Gardens of the Northwest newsletter and join the conversation at the Homes Gardens of the Northwest on Facebook page.

Article source:

New home, new landscape: Where do you start?

If you’ve recently moved into a new home, the world outside your windows is waiting. It’s time to tackle the garden.

Turning a piece of property into a garden that reflects your style and meets your needs is quite a project, whether your home is a brand-new place on an empty lot or an established home with a patchwork of landscaping going back through a succession of previous owners. Either way, the possibilities are unlimited.

The first step is to give yourself permission to dream a little.

“Look at your property and ask yourself what your long-term goals are,” said Cheri Marie Stringer, a landscape designer and owner of TLC Gardens in Longmont, Colo.

General goals are fine, she says. You might want a lawn for the kids to play on or a patio for entertaining. That’s a good start.

But perhaps you’re also thinking of a sheltered place to sit outside, a small vegetable garden or a flower garden that welcomes you home when you pull into the driveway.

Stringer most often works with clients who want to renovate an existing landscape.

“When I meet with them, they’re trying to work around what’s there instead of imagining how it could be completely different,” she said. “They can’t see what it could be.”

On an empty lot around a new home there are no distractions, so it may seem easier to imagine your new garden, but the process is the same, Stringer says. Figuring out what you want comes first.

She guides her clients from an initial list of goals to a list of priorities. The two won’t always coincide.

Then working with both lists, she helps clients envision developing their garden one step at a time. Working with a garden-design professional helps even if you’re an experienced gardener. It’s less about digging holes and planting things here and there, and more about coming up with a coherent plan for a beautiful and inviting garden.

Sally Wittkofski, a landscape architect and owner of SWW Landscape Design in Richmond, Va., goes through the same process with her clients in the rolling terrain and relatively mild climate of the mid-Atlantic area that Stringer does in the Rocky Mountains and high plains of the West.

“Don’t be afraid to start,” she tells them. “Starting is the hard part.”

Wittkofski suggests shopping for ideas in the pages of magazines and on websites such as Pinterest or Houzz. When something appeals to you, she says, “ask yourself why you like it, what draws you to it.”

Working with a designer will help you develop your own style, so it is important to try to find the right professional and to be willing to listen to the voice of experience. You could order a pallet of rocks from the local stone yard and lay a patio yourself in one weekend, but having a conversation with a designer before you start will help you make some crucial decisions about the location and shape and size of the patio, and about whether stone or bricks or pavers are the right choice for your site and your needs.

After talking with a designer, you may decide to hire her and her crew to build the patio, or she may give you the encouragement you need to do it yourself, with the assurance that the results will be satisfying. Professionals are familiar with local codes and covenants. Designers or their contractors can help you address drainage issues and can level uneven ground where necessary. They are also adept at looking at the overall picture of your property and helping you decide where you can save and where you should splurge.

Whether you do all the work on your own or collaborate with a professional, dividing the project into phases helps make it more approachable and affordable. If your budget is generous, you may only have a couple of major phases — the front yard and the backyard, for example.

To spread the work and the expense, you could divide your garden plans into eight phases, based on your list of priorities. This year you can put in a patio, or build some raised beds for a vegetable garden and plant a couple of trees. You’ll find yourself and your garden making satisfying progress as time goes on.

Getting started

When you’re landscaping your property, don’t be intimidated, designers say. Savor the opportunity: This is a chance to make your garden your own. Here are some tips and ideas:

▪ Ask yourself how you want to use your garden. Where will you spend the most time? What do you want to do there: entertain friends, play games with the kids or relax on your own?

▪ Take an inventory of what’s on your property. Existing trees, shrubs and flowerbeds should be on your list, but also structures (garage, potting shed) and features such as walls, fountains and paths. This will help you get a better feel for the possibilities and problems.

▪ Make a note of every idea you have for the garden, even if it’s a long list.

▪ Don’t forget to look around your neighborhood. If your neighbors have beautiful landscaping, you may be able to incorporate ideas from their property into your own layout.

▪ Don’t be afraid to remove plants you don’t like.

▪ Go for instant gratification, even in gardening. A fence provides privacy much faster than a line of shrubs. If you put up a fence, you might want to plant shrubs or trees in front of it, to give the landscape depth and texture.

▪ Plants come last. They are the finishing touches in a great design.

Article source:

Garden tips: It’s time to start planning for 2016 action

If you stored away tender bulbs like this dahlia “Stolze von Berlin” for the winter, do a quick check to make sure they’re holding up.

Article source:

Garden tips: magnolias; winter vegies; lemon trees; tannin in water

Enabling Cookies in Internet Explorer 9

  1. Open the Internet Browser
  2. Click Tools (or “gear” icon at top right hand corner) Internet Options Privacy Advanced
  3. Check Override automatic cookie handling
  4. For First-party Cookies and Third-party Cookies click Accept
  5. Click OK and OK

Enabling Cookies in Internet Explorer 10, 11

  1. Open the Internet Browser
  2. Click the Tools button, and then click Internet Options.
  3. Click the Privacy tab, and then, under Settings, move the slider to the bottom to allow all cookies, and then click OK.
  4. Click OK

Article source:

Gwyneth Paltrow to talk design at Antiques & Garden show

Imagine two good friends, each with a keen eye for design, getting together to chat about something they both enjoy — beautiful and livable interior design.

Now, imagine the two women, actress Gwyneth Paltrow and award-winning interior designer Windsor Smith, coming together onstage to share those ideas and insights. This is what’s planned for the keynote event at the Antiques Garden Show, the annual mid-winter celebration of beautiful gardens and dazzling interior design taking place this weekend at Music City Center.

When Paltrow, who curates the weekly lifestyle online publication Goop, gets together with Smith, the founder of Windsor Smith Home and the author of “Windsor Smith Homefront: Design for Modern Living,” the occasion is likely to be a spirited chat around the topic of what today’s “modern living” means.

“I think it’s this young family coming up that really wants the conventional, wants things of substance, but also wants what’s new and innovative,” Smith said in a phone interview. “Living rooms, dining rooms — they’re really changing. Now, every square foot is precious. They want more space for kids so that they can develop and grow and be creative, and they want their own square footage as well.”

The house is “the new everything,” she said: It’s the new night spot, dinner spot, the new office. “Modern families want real infrastructure in a home that supports families, underneath beautiful rooms. They ask, ‘What value can this room bring to me?’ ”

This aesthetic is right in line with what Paltrow offers up at Goop, the weekly lifestyle website that she launched in 2008 ( The site is a mix of all that is current in fashion, food, travel, wellness, mindfulness and self-discovery, arts and culture — “All that she experiences in life,” said Smith about her close friend. In fact, Paltrow wrote the forward to Smith’s “Design for Modern Living.”

“She touches every part of lifestyle,” Smith said. “Rather than having to stumble and find our way to something extraordinary, she is, at lightning speed, grabbing it and presenting it for our understanding.

“She is incredible, at not only spotting it, she is doing a terrific job of articulating for us what she finds.”

It’s for this reason that the Antiques Garden Show’s planners selected Paltrow for the keynote event, and Smith to share the stage with her and later with other notable interior and landscape designers, said Amy Liz Riddick, co-chair, with Elizabeth Coble, of this year’s event.

“It’s not just about the aesthetic and the design, but about how you live your life, how you want to maximize your time with the people you love,” Riddick said. “You don’t just want things to look pretty. It’s also about how and where you spend your time.”

Unique landscapes and gardens

The focus at the show extends to landscapes, too, and the show’s gardens are always designed to excite and inspire. Local designers are installing four unique, elegant gardens this year.

The entry garden, designed by the horticulture team at Cheekwood, offers a glimpse of the unique gardens at the show and of upcoming features at the Botanical Garden and Museum of Art.

“This year, what inspired our entry garden is a garden at Cheekwood that doesn’t exist anymore,” said Patrick Larkin, senior vice president of gardens for Cheekwood. He explained that several areas around the mansion are being redecorated to look as they would have when the Cheek family lived there, based on pictures from the 1930s and ’40s. Those changes will be unveiled in 2017, but the former parterre garden, “which was really a cutting garden” more than a half-century ago, is the inspiration for the design at the Antiques Garden Show.

“It’s going to very colorful,” Larkin said. There will be low hedges of forsythia, tall hedges of southern magnolia, tulips “because that’s what we do at Cheekwood in spring” and other flowers.

“We’re juxtaposing that classic landscape with more contemporary arts,” showcasing the work of Steve Tobin, the artist whose work will be on display on the grounds at Cheekwood and in the mansion this spring.

“Steve Tobin’s inspiration is roots — tree roots — and we have one of his ‘Dancing Roots’ in our garden. It’s about eight feet tall, and looks like people dancing,” Larkin said. “We give people a sneak peek at what’s coming up at Cheekwood. (The exhibit at Cheekwood, called Southern Roots, opens Feb. 20.)

Other gardens are designed by local landscape specialists Todd Breyer and Josiah Lockhard, Phillipe Chadwick, and Gavin Duke and the team at Page/Duke.

Each of the gardens at the show is unique; one takes inspiration from Versailles, another features vintage millwork; another is a more traditional parterre — “Each garden is unique,” Larkin said. “They’re a very talented group of designers.”

“The gardens are always exciting,” co-chair Riddick said. “They take you out of the doldrums of winter.”

Gloria Ballard is a freelance garden and travel writer in Nashville, and answers garden questions at her blog, The Garden Bench, E-mail questions to

If you go

The 26th Antiques Garden Show will be held Friday-Sunday at Music City Center.

This year’s theme is “Landscape of Design,” and visitors will find a range of new ideas for gardens and homes, and a roster of well-known authorities to share them. Gwyneth Paltrow, curator of the weekly lifestyle online publication Goop, and interior designer Windsor Smith will conduct the keynote event. Iconic designers Bunny Williams and Brian McCarthy and acclaimed floral and landscape designers Shane Connolly and Louis Benech will be on hand for lectures and book signings.

“It’s exciting for Nashville as a whole that there is this interest in interior design,” says Amy Liz Riddick, co-chair, with Elizabeth Coble, of this year’s event. “It says a lot about where we are that all these people want to come to Nashville.”

The event is open to the public 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday.

The presentation by Paltrow and Smith is at 11 a.m. Friday, followed by the lecture by Williams and McCarthy at 2 p.m.

Lectures on Saturday include Connolly at 10:30 a.m., Benech at 1 p.m., and a Design Panel with Smith, Mark D. Sikes, Suzanne Rheinstein and Brian Murphy at 2:30 p.m. Book signings follow all lectures.

A Bourbon Party will take place 6:30-9 p.m. Saturday, featuring bourbon, barbecue and bluegrass, and a book signing of “The Southerner’s Cookbook: Recipes, Wisdom and Stories” with David DiBenedetto, senior vice president and editor in chief of Garden Gun magazine.

Individual run-of-show tickets are $20. Tickets for ages 65 and older, active military and students are $12 in advance or at the door; ages 12 and under are admitted free.

Tickets to the Bourbon Party are $75. Admission to the event with Paltrow and Smith is $75; all other lectures are $50. Group discounts are available.

The Antiques Garden Show is a fundraising event, and proceeds benefit Cheekwood and the ECON (Economic Club of Nashville) charities, including Big Brothers of Nashville, Fannie Battle Day Home for Children, Martha O’Bryan Center, the W.O. Smith Nashville Community Music School and the YWCA of Nashville.

For the full schedule and more information, visit

Article source:

The Jezabels’ Surprise Return

by Andrew P. Street | February 12th, 2016 9:46:AM EST

‘This is going to sound random, but I’ve been thinking about Pope Francis the last few days.” This is not a statement one would expect Hayley Mary to make early in an interview about the Jezabels’ third album. The frontwoman is sitting in a busy café in Sydney’s inner west, drinking volcanic-strength coffees and talking about the long and winding road that led to Synthia, their unexpected third album: unexpected both in its confidence and quality after the troubled gestation of their previous album, 2014’s The Brink, and in that no-one knew it was coming, least of all the four people who created it.

“I’m just really excited, inexplicably, because I feel there is a change in the air,” she declares with passion. “This Pope is talking about the environment and the theology of women, there are revolutions going on – I’m really excited about the world.”

Mary’s a non-believer these days. “I ignored Catholicism, because I grew up Catholic,” she laughs. “Catholic guilt permeated my family, even when we didn’t actually practice anymore. But I started seeing things about this Pope, and he talks about the genius of women needing to be involved in important decisions. And I feel that Tony Abbott was not accepted in Australia when 10 years ago he probably would have been in for decades. He really mobilised people to go, ‘No no NO! We’re not complacent, what the fuck is going on here?'”

Complacency has never been an issue with the Jezabels. Whisper it quietly, but it wasn’t a done deal that there would even be a third album. Mary insists that the band never discussed splitting up, but The Brink was the archetype of the Difficult Second Album: sales were good, but critical reception was mixed, and touring for the album proved unexpectedly brutal.

“We definitely cracked,” she sighs. “We worked too hard and we toured too much, and it took its toll on us, physically and emotionally. And working hard is good, but in some ways we worked too hard and in others we didn’t work hard enough. [The rest of the band] are all workaholics so they would have just kept going, but I was like, ‘I think you guys need a holiday, and I’m taking one so you have to have one.'”

Once the touring was done the members scattered. Drummer Nik Kaloper decamped to the UK, keyboardist Heather Shannon started pre-medicine studies, and guitarist Samuel Lockwood ignored music for a bit and “kept himself busy landscaping and just living again”. Mary, however, took instruction from the words of William Blake: “The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.”

“I went to America, hired a Ford Mustang convertible and I drove from L.A. to Vegas, and I lived a life of hedonism for three-to-six months. I hung out with proper rock rollers who still think it’s the Seventies and take a lot of drugs and have a lot of sex,” she laughs. “It was great!”

She then headed across the pond to London, “and I was meeting all these bands that had the look of the golden age of British music, but had all these backwards attitudes. And it really made me wonder about the current state of rock roll. I’d say ‘I’m a feminist’ and they’d say, ‘But you’re too pretty to be a feminist!’ What the fuck? I felt like a groupie, because that’s how they saw me. Being away from the Jezabels and out of the small world which we created was a bit of an eye-opener.”

Studio Days: The Jezabels (from left: Mary, Lockwood, Kaloper, Shannon) with producer Lachlan Mitchell.

In 2015 a gig commitment drew them all back to Sydney again. “We just got together to rehearse for a show, and we were suddenly like, ‘Nah, let’s just jam.’ It was glorious! It was like back in the day, because there was the opposite of pressure. We wrote four songs that week, and forgot to rehearse.”

The enthusiasm for making music together collided with the ideas about sex, identity, feminism and self-determination that were swirling around Mary’s head. “I just came back from the UK really wanting to make a record. Like, really excited for the first time in years, and feeling like the stuff I wanted to talk about was more valid than it ever was. And the band was like, ‘Yeah, let’s do it!'”

This burst of inspiration had some consequences: “Nik and I were planning on moving back to the UK, but we thought, ‘Let’s just stay until we write a record.’ And that took a few months, but it was quite quick – and Lachlan [Mitchell, producer] lives around the corner and he was like, ‘Let’s just make it.'”

So what made the difference? “It’s not the second record,” she says bluntly. “There’s a little bit of abandon, and you’re better at what you’re doing. You know how to function together.”

Synthia is the most explicitly sexual album the band have ever made – although Mary shies away from using the F word.

“I don’t want to use the word ‘feminist’,” she says. “A lot of people just cringe – like my father, and guys I know, even good people! But people are really shifting: even my dad, I think maybe because of the Pope.”

That said, the album pulls few punches with regard to sexual politics.

“There are a few songs on the record that are about that, with sex. Just ‘lighten up about it’. Songs like ‘If Ya Want Me’ and ‘Pleasure Drive’ – they’re personal, but also just how I feel about sex in general. Like with ‘Smile’, for example: it’s saying, ‘I’m not a prude, I don’t hate sex, I don’t hate men, I might like you, you can express yourself, if you want to whistle it doesn’t actually bother me.’ But when it comes to telling me to smile? Don’t tell me what to do.” She rolls her eyes. “Because it happens a lot.”

Anyone concerned that Mary’s descent into the international rock roll underbelly might have turned the band into swaggering rock pigs can breathe easy: as befits an album named Synthia, Shannon’s new collection of keyboards dominate the record.

“In a way the synthesiser is retro, and in another way it’s more futuristic and guitar music seems more retro,” Mary suggests. “I know there’s a romanticism about guitar music and the blues, but in the Seventies there was this feeling of, ‘No, let’s go forward and use computers and machines.’ Kraftwerk as opposed to the Beatles. Other things can be rock roll.”

For the past three years, there’s been a shadow hanging over the Jezabels that they’d kept under wraps: just before work began on The Brink, Shannon had been diagnosed with ovarian cancer. The initial prognosis was good and the band continued to operate; however, a couple of weeks after this interview, the quartet received news Shannon’s cancer had aggressively returned.

“She’s started treatment, and she’s in positive spirits,” Mary explains down the line from London, confirming that touring plans have been put on hold for the foreseeable future. “She’s been very strong the last few years. Despite the cancer, we’ve been able to maintain this reasonable level of scheduling. She’s kind of amazing.

From issue #772, available now.

Article source:

Texas Flood performs Ray Vaughan tribute

  • Blues band Texas Flood will pay tribute to the legendary Stevie Ray Vaughan at 8 p.m. on Feb. 12 at Concert Pub North. Photo: Http://



Blues band Texas Flood will pay tribute to the legendary Stevie Ray Vaughan at 8 p.m. on Feb. 12 at Concert Pub North. Tickets start at $12.

The band is from North Texas and features Hungarian guitarist and vocalist Tommy Katona, who began listening to Vaughan when he was four. The band performs this month in Dallas, Houston and Baton Rouge.

Concert Pub North is located at 2470 FM 1960 West. Learn more at or call 281-583-8111.


Get tips, ideas at Home Garden Show

The ninth annual Cy-Fair Home Garden Show comes to the Berry Center on Feb. 27-28. This year’s lineup includes new exhibitors as well as favorites from past shows to provide new, timely updates to age-old homeowner dilemmas.

Also joining the show is Texas Trash and Treasures, a hand-crafted home décor retailer, which HGTV viewers may recognize from the “Junk Gypsies” series.

Just in time for spring cleaning, organizing gets a nod with the Ask The Organizer Booth, featuring garage, attic and storage unit organizer Judson Crowder, owner of Houston-based Restorganize, who will be on hand from 12-4 p.m. each day of the show.

Addressing other annual homeowner tasks, such as landscaping, gardening and outdoor living will be: Gardenline’s Randy Lemmon speaking on spring planting for the Houston area; Turf Plus Management’s Belgard Outdoor Living Area exhibit; a feature exhibit by Houston Cool Pools; and the Ask The Master Gardener Booth.

This year’s show also will feature an Indoor Cooking Stage, providing live demonstrations from popular Cypress-area restaurants including Dario’s American Cuisine, Marvino’s Italian Kitchen and Alicia’s Mexican Grille, as well as Berry Center Chef Lisa Pratt.

Show hours are 9 a.m.-7 p.m. on Feb. 27 and 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on Feb. 28. Tickets for the Cy-Fair Home Garden Show are cash only and cost $9 for adults and $8 for seniors. Children 12 years and younger can attend for free. Parking is available at no cost.

For show and ticket information, call 832-274-3944 or visit, where a downloadable discount coupon for $2 off admission is available. The Berry Center is located at 8877 Barker Cypress in Cypress.


Honor veterans at annual gala

The Cy-Fair Educational Foundation will hold its eighth annual Salute to Our Heroes Gala on Feb. 13 at the Omni Hotel Westside Houston. This gala honors the men and women who have served to protect freedom and liberty. The evening will include a Missing Man Table and Honors Ceremony to honor missing loved ones.

The gala will feature Navy SEAL, sniper, combat medic and author Kevin Lacz.

Salute to Our Heroes has raised more than half a million dollars over the past seven years. Proceeds from this event have funded three endowed scholarships for students graduating from the Cypress-Fairbanks ISD.

Sponsorships and tickets are available for Salute to Our Heroes. Tickets are $100 each, and $50 for veterans. For more information, email or visit at


Vendor Fair at Berry Center

The Cy-Fair Independent School District Parent/Teacher Organization Presidents Council Fundraising Vendor Fair is scheduled for Feb. 16 from 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Berry Center, 8877 Barker Cypress Road. Open to the public, the Vendor Fair provides an opportunity to preview many fundraising options and speak directly with company representatives.

All district-approved fundraising vendors have been invited to the Vendor Fair to display their products. Vendors are available to assist school staff, booster clubs, school clubs, sports associations, school supply chairmen, school spirit chairmen, scout groups, church groups and day care centers.Door prizes will be awarded throughout the event.

For more information, contact Kristi Giron, director of general administration, at or Leslie Francis, director of marketing and community relations, at


Learn more about the birds of winter

Attendees at Lone Star College-CyFair’s weekly programs this February will learn about the value of jewelry, cooking with basil, native birds and quilting.

The Learning, Inspiration, Fellowship, and Enrichment programs are free and held Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. in the library (Room 131 unless otherwise noted) at 9191 Barker Cypress.

On Feb. 17, bird aficionado Jeff Mohamed will talk about the many bird species that winter in this area, the reasons they come here and the best places to see them.

Call the library at 281-290-3214 for L.I.F.E. program information or go online to


Help choir get to Carnegie Hall

Make plans this spring to enjoy a variety of performing arts events at Lone Star College-CyFair.

The season kicks off with two fundraising events to help vocal director Alex Qian and his Concert Choir students fulfill a special invitation to perform Faure’s “Requiem” at Carnegie Hall this summer.

Bring the family Feb. 19 for a choral performance featuring the LSC-CyFair Concert Choir and the Houston Symphonic Band. Tickets are $10.

Then return March 4 for “Silent Movie Night,” featuring live movie organist Harold Wade.

All production dates and show times are subject to change. For a complete up-to-date schedule and ticket information, go to or call 281-290-5201.


Off-Broadway show revived

Stuart Ross’ “Forever Plaid” is one of the most internationally popular off-Broadway musicals to hit the stage, and it’s on stage at the Houston Family Arts Center. This nostalgic, 1950’s revue on the Garza Main Stage runs through Feb. 21.

Frankie, Jinx, Sparky, and Smudge are The Plaids. One the way to their first big gig, their cherry red 1954 Mercury collided with a school bus, and The Plaids were killed instantly. Now, they’ve come back to Earth for one final performance. The Plaids will sing some of the greatest hits of the 1950s, including “Three Coins in the Fountain,” “Chain Gang” and “Heart and Soul.”

Performances of “Forever Plaid” are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., with Sunday matinees at 3 p.m. Tickets are $26 for adults, $22 for seniors and $15 for students. Tickets may be purchased online at, or by phone at 281-587-6100. Special pricing is available for groups of 10 or more.

The center is located at 10760 Grant Road in Houston.


See Shakespeare’s tale of star-crossed couple

The Texas Repertory Theatre Co. continues its 11th anniversary season with a new staging of William Shakespeare’s classic romance “Romeo Juliet,” playing Thursday through Sundays, through Feb. 21.

Celebrate the Valentine season with Shakespeare’s immortal portrait of true love. When feuding families attempt to separate the young hero and heroine, it sets the stage for one of the theater’s most enduring literary creations. Show times vary, so visit The theater is located at 14243 Stuebner Airline in Houston. For tickets or more information, call 281-583-7573.


Get moving for a good cause

Mark Henry and Cypress-Fairbanks ISD will present the third annual Superintendent’s Fun Run Festival at Towne Lake on Feb. 27 from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. The event benefits the Cy-Fair Educational Foundation.

The event has something for everyone, including the live band Sawdust Road, a variety of vendor booths, food trucks, student performances, a children’s play zone, a one-mile run, a family walking path and a certified 5K.

The races have staggered times. For more information, visit

Submit your events to


Article source:

Model of Indian Key coming to the Keys History & Discovery Center


Deputy arrested and demoted for cutting an unlicensed driver a break and writing a speeding ticket to the driver’s girlfriend instead

Article source: