Sustainable Urban Gardening Speaker Series

When: 2nd Sat. (Feb. – Sept.) from 2 – 4 p.m.
Where: 4500 Lincoln Ave., Oakland, 94602
Cost: $10 in advance through PayPal, $12 at the door or by calling us at 510-866-8482.

All presentations are held outdoors, please wear layers. We will move indoors if there is rain.

Interested in purchasing bulk tickets at a group discount or the full season pass for 15% off? Contact

Thank you to The Rose Foundation for making this workshop series possible!


Feb. 11: Gardening 101: Everything to Know as a Beginning Gardener Jun. 10: Go from Lawn to Garden with Sheet Mulch
Mar. 11:  The Joys of Drip Irrigation Systems Jul. 8: Natural Pest Management
Apr. 8: Growing Edibles and the Healthy Soil Connection Aug. 12: Gardening with Native Plants and Wild Seed Collection
May 13: The How and Why of Tree Pruning Sep. 9: Fall and Winter Gardening

Saturday, May 13, 2 – 4 p.m.

The How and Why of Tree Pruning

Take the mystery out of tree pruning with this hands-on workshop! Learn the basics and leave WITH skills you can start using immediately. Topics covered will include:

  • Tree Identification
  • Pruning Theory
  • Desired Results
  • How to Prune Properly
  • Common Pruning Mistakes
  • Tools, Sharpening Techniques, and Safety Measures

The workshop will also include a show-and-tell of different types of wood, branches, branch collars, compartmentalization of decay in trees (CODIT). Bring your questions and come prepared for a fun interactive learning experience.

Tony Wolcott is a Certified Landscape Horticulturalist, Certified Irrigation Designer, Board Certified Master Arborist, Master Composter, and Bay Friendly Designer. His work experience includes being the urban forester at the Cities of Albany and San Francisco, non-profit work with Friends of the Urban Forest, Our City Forest, and arborist representative with Bartlett Tree Experts. Currently he is professor of Arboriculture within the Horticulture division of the Biology Department at Diablo Valley College.

Saturday, April 8, 2 – 4 p.m.

Growing Edibles and the Healthy Soil Connection

April is a great time to add annual or perennial edibles to your garden! Lori Caldwell will be on-hand to talk about the many benefits of growing your own food and the healthy soil building techniques to increase yields, keep down pests and diseases and use less water. Topics for this talk will include: rebuilding soils, great crops for your area, pest control, crop rotation and more! Participants will receive a handy edible reader for reference.

Lori Caldwell is a Master Composter, Stopwaste Educator and owner/operator of her own business, CompostGal: Consulting, Landscaping & Education. She has been happily teaching sustainable gardening classes for the past 10 years.

Saturday, March 11th, 2 – 4 p.m.

The Joys of Drip Irrigation Systems

Drip irrigation has multiple benefits and fewer challenges compared to sprinkler irrigation for many landscape planting situations. By choosing the right equipment and a few simple design and installation practices drip systems can be efficient, durable, low maintenance and cost effective. Scott Summerfeld will review drip basics, EBMUD rebates to convert sprinklers to drip, and practice assembling a small system. This workshop will also cover how to avoid common errors made with irrigation. Be prepared to ask all your drip and irrigation questions.

Scott Sommerfeld is a registered landscape architect whose focus and passion in recent years has focused on efficient state-of-the-art irrigation design and management. As an EBMUD Water Conservation Representative for over 18 years, Scott advises EBMUD customers, developers, and cities.

Saturday, February 11th, 2 – 4 p.m.

Gardening 101: Everything You Need to Know as a Beginning Gardener

Learn how to grow edible and ornamental plants from seed and cuttings with Jeff Bridge of Ploughshares Nursery. This is a hands-on workshop will be demonstrating techniques and best practices so grab your gardening gloves! Jeff will discuss choosing soil, watering your plants, how to avoid common mistakes, and the basics of fertilization. Bring your questions and garden conundrums for Jeff to answer after the demonstration. Gardening is fun and interesting. Come away with everything you need to start your own small garden!

Jeff Bridge is the Manager of non-profit Ploughshares Nursery in Alameda California. Jeff is grateful for the opportunity to bring his twenty years experience working in the best Bay Area nurseries to benefit Alameda Point Collaborative’s supportive housing program for formerly homeless families and individuals.

Want to volunteer to help out at the speaker series? Contact us at for more information.