Field Trip to La Verne Nursery! November 9th @ 9 am (Note new time)

This field trip is for WLA and LA chapter members ONLY.   The online address per Google Maps is WRONG.   The nursery has been without electricity due to wind/fires. Specific directions and actual available plants will be emailed to you as soon as the nursery can get them to us.

We will have a tour of La Verne Nursery at their huge Piru Facility.  La Verne is one of the premier sources of tropical and subtropical fruiting plants in our area.  We all probably have at least a plant or two from their nursery.  Daniel Nelson, Director of Nursery Operations, will be our tour guide.  He will discuss such topics as mass propagation, container culture, and specific care instructions for various fruit trees, as well as answer any questions our members may have.  This is a rare chance to see how a large nursery goes about producing many thousands of plants a year and to learn from Dann’s professional expertise.  We will be able to see their propagation facilities and techniques.  Perhaps we will see how their nursery grafts new scion wood to rootstock.

Although La Verne Nursery does not sell retail, as special guests we will be able to purchase trees after the tour at near-wholesale prices.  The last time we purchased trees from La Verne Nursery, the plants were large, healthy, and beautiful!  Everyone was immensely pleased with the plants purchased.

You can pre-order any plants that you want (before we get to the nursery).  Go online to see what plants are available at: http://www.lavernenursery.com/current-availability.html.    This list shows what plants the nursery has in abundance and may not include all the possibilities you will find when you are there.  As noted above, we will receive a more complete list of available trees by the end of this week and that list will be emailed to you as soon as it is received.  Please note that you cannot order online. Select your plants and email Susan Guggenheim to tell her what plants you want to order.

All sales will be cash; buyers will be responsible for paying for and transporting their own purchases at the end of the tour.

The nursery is some distance from West LA, so plan to carpool.   Members of the LA Chapter are welcome.  Only CRFG members may attend the field trip.

 

Scion Exchange/Grafting Demos/Hands On Class February 9th

Yes, our biggest meeting of the year is just about upon us.   And for 2019, we are finally providing what has long been requested:  a chance  for you yourself to take a shot at grafting under the eyes of an expert.

We are also going to provide  intimate, close-up-and-personal  grafting demos by having four different experts each holding down his own table and teaching a variety of different grafts , the Cleft Graft, the Budding Graft, the Veneer Graft, etc.

The meeting will be in the MultiPurpose Room of the Culver City Veterans Memorial  complex.  The schedule will be as follows:

9:30-10 –  Registration, waiver signing, the Bringing In and Arranging of the Scion Wood (Click here to access a .pdf on how to collect and store scion wood from  your orchard)  Please place each variety in its own ziploc bag and label it!  Also, if you intend to collect wood at our exchange, bring more ziplocs, and a Magic Marker to label your precious finds.

NOTE:  Because of huanglongbing disease, NO CITRUS scion wood, fruit or roostock should be brought to the meeting or otherwise moved around the state.

10-10:30 – The Grafting Demos (you are encouraged to watch each of them, but obviously you can camp for the duration in front of Fang Liu, for example, if you are trying to master the veneer graft)

10:30-11 – Members allowed to select scion wood

11-11:30 – Non-members allowed to select scion wood

11:30-noon Hands on Grafting Classes with our Experts

Note:  while we will have knives, parafilm and grafting tape on hand, we will not necessarily  have enough rootstock and matching scion wood for all comers to take home an actual grafted tree.   The classes are designed to teach you the craft, period.  Odds are we will have a lot of avocado rootstock and  a lot of pear scion wood.  Despite the fact that avocados are sometimes referred to as Alligator Pears, this WILL NOT work.  Plus, your beautiful graft may be lopped off and replaced by the next student.

If you have a rootstock and scion wood of your own, however, that you want to learn to “marry” for life, feel free to bring ’em.

Pictures from our scion exchange

David King runs the Learning Garden at Venice High and also teaches the Plant Propagation class at UCLA extension.  Each year he brings students to our Scion Exchange, and this  year, they sent us a lovely note of thanks!  And photos!  Thank you, kids,  for being a great part of our group.  And thank you, volunteer grafter/speakers.  The depicted grafter is our pineapple guava expert, Glen Woodmansee.

Grafting demos/Scion Exchange February 10th

Our famous annual Grafting Demos and Scion Exchange will take place on February 10th in the Multi-Purpose Room and its adjacent Patio at the Culver City Veterans Memorial Building.

We will have demonstrations of three grafting techniques, including the use of the common cleft graft (such as you would use with stone fruit), the side veneer graft (such as you would use for avocados) and the traditional whip-and-tongue graft.  You will be able to get up close and observe every detail of these techniques.  Our grafters will be available to answer your grafting questions.

With grafting, you can build your own fruit tree, with multiple varieties of apples, peaches, pears, sapotes, cherimoyas, etc.  You can even have peaches, nectarines, plums, and pluots on the same tree, or almonds on one side of your tree and plums on the other.  You can completely graft over a non-productive variety (called topworking).  With grafting, the possibilities are almost unlimited.

 We will also have our annual scion wood exchange, so please bring your scion wood to share.  If we all bring wood, we should have many different varieties from many different trees.  If you have rootstock growing in small pots, please bring them to the meeting and take home a grafted plant or share your rootstock with others.  Remember to bring extra bags, labels, and a marker for the scion wood you collect!

At the exchange, please limit your selections to two of any variety until everyone has had an opportunity to collect wood.  Then feel free to go back.   Please do not collect wood you do not plan to use. By the way, members who have paid for 2018 and who bring in scions to share will get first choice of scion wood that they want to use in their own gardens.  So, if you haven’t renewed for 2018 (both WLA and CRFG, Inc.), now might be a good time to send your dues to Andrée.

To minimize chaos and give our speakers the respect they deserve, we are adopting the following schedule.

10:00 – 10:15: Registration and scion wood donation

10:15 to 11:15: Demonstrations of grafting on the patio

11:15 to 11:30: Scion exchange open to members in the Multi-Purpose Room

11:30 to 11:45: Scion exchange open to non-members in the Multi-Purpose Room

No one will be allowed to enter the Multi-Purpose Room during the grafting demonstrations (unless it rains).

 Note: There will also be a sale of quite sizable Blue Passionflower vines grown by one of our members, Terry Brockert. These are considered a great pollinator for other passionflower vines.  You can read more about them here.