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Celebrate Sustainable Design

Join the Environmental Nature Center in partnership with Room & Board on Tuesday, November 13th for a lively evening with special guest Wayne Inouye as he leads an inspired conversation about sustainable architecture. Wayne will discuss his most recent project: designing a LEED Platinum home in Corona del Mar, furnished by Room & Board. Room & Board is committed to supporting American manufacturers and small, family-owned businesses. Its designs are made using wood, steel, cotton, granite—natural materials that stand the test of time. By seeking out U.S.-made products, this allows Room & Board to reduce its environmental impact, commit to responsibly sourced materials and reinvest in local communities. Guests will also learn about Room & Board’s local community partner the Environmental Nature Center and our dedication to ecological responsibility, sustainable practices and environmental education. “Room & Board has a…

Shop Local at the ENC Artisan Marketplace this Holiday Season!

The Environmental Nature Center (ENC) will present the Artisan Marketplace on Sunday, December 7 from 10AM to 3PM.  Guests will walk the trails and shop for handmade gifts from local artisans offering a variety of eco-friendly, sustainable, arts and crafts. The inaugural event will feature over 60 artisans, 6 food vendors and 2 musical acts. For more info visit encenter.org/artisan-marketplace. “Local businesses are the heart of our community. The money we spend shopping at local small businesses is circulated back into our local economy, building a strong, economic infrastructure,” said ENC Outreach Coordinator Sama Wareh.  “Supporting local businesses also lowers carbon emissions and provides more employment for the community.” A furoshiki station will provide visitors with the opportunity to learn green ways to wrap gifts, and a…

Discover a Different Type of Green House

Thursday, November 13, 6 to 8 P.M. Conversation begins at 6:30 P.M. at Room & Board, South Coast Plaza Village 1661 West Sunflower Ave., Santa Ana RSVP at http://www.roomandboard.com/encsouthcoast Please join us for a lively evening with special guest Wayne Inouye as he leads an inspired conversation about sustainable architecture. Wayne will discuss his most recent project: designing a LEED Platinum home in Corona del Mar, furnished by Room & Board. Guests will also learn about Room & Boards local community partner the Environmental Nature Center and our dedication to ecological responsibility, sustainable practices and environmental education. Bring a friend and enjoy light bites and wine from Tantara Wineries. Please let us know if you can make it. RSVP athttp://www.roomandboard.com/encsouthcoast

Why the ENC promotes the use of locally Native Plants

Invasive non-native organisms are one of the greatest threats to natural ecosystems. They can displace native plant and animal species and degrade our nation’s unique and diverse biological resources. You can do your part to help preserve our environment with the addition of locally native plants to your garden. If you live in Orange County there are over 800 species of plants native to Orange County to choose from. Native plants serve as habitat to native animals like birds and butterflies. They protect biodiversity. Native plants can also help your wallet.  Natives have adapted to the unique conditions of their environments, which means that they require far less water than non-native plants! Native plants can also reduce the costs of using pesticides, because they have…

Calling all Artisans!

Do you create something? Food? Handmade goods? Fine art? Music? Consider being a vendor at the ENC’s Artisan Marketplace on December 7, 2014! This holiday season the ENC is holding the Artisan Marketplace, where guests can walk the trails to shop for handmade gifts from local artisans offering a variety of eco-friendly, sustainable products. The ENC created this event to give the community a chance to support local artisans. “Local businesses are the heart of the community. The money we spend shopping at local ma and pa places gets recirculated back into our community, thus building a strong, economic infrastructure. It also lowers carbon emissions and provides more employment for the community. Local businesses are most invested in the future of the community, but big…

Drought got you Down? Try Native Plants!

While part of the country is dealing with record-breaking winters, California is too. It’s true, we are officially in a drought. The last time California was in a drought like this was … well actually they’re saying this is our driest year on record. Governor Jerry Brown has officially announced this drought as an EMERGENCY. In doing so, he asked Californians to take action. Reducing the amount of water used daily is an important way to help. One way to do this is by watering our yards less. Native plants can help! You can keep your yard looking nice and save money, save water and save on landscape maintenance. Native plants showcase color throughout the year, draw birds, butterflies and reduce pesticide use. Native plants…

Holiday gift packaging got you down?

Holiday gift packaging got you down?  Don’t know what to do with all of that Styrofoam packing material?  Waste for Waves has it covered! Waste for Waves uses donated Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) foam that cannot be recycled, and turns it into surfboard blanks and other “eco-friendlier” surfing products. The process is simple. Any expanded polystyrene foam used to protect boxed items (like toys, electronics, etc.) can be used to make surfboards. The EPS only needs to be clean and white. The foam is collected and reprocessed, then used to make recycled surfboard blanks.  Thank you, Waste for Waves, for reducing the trash going into our landfills and oceans! The bins can be found at participating surf shops found across California. To find the list of…

A New Years resolution that is easy to keep

Ditch the disposable water bottle habit! Instead, drink clean tap water from a reusable bottle. It may seem insignificant, but ultimately it will benefit you and our environment.  Here are some reasons why replacing disposable bottles is a great idea: Tap water is just as safe, if not safer, than bottled water. The water that flows from your faucet has more stringent federal safety regulations than bottled water. Only 30–40% of bottled water sold across state lines are regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. On average, the FDA sends inspectors to bottling plants once every two to three years. Reusable bottles are more convenient than single-use water bottles. Reusable bottles can be taken anywhere and can be easily stored. When choosing a reusable bottle, look…

ENC Artist of the Month: Patricia M. Gray

Patricia M. Gray is the featured local artist of the month at the ENC, and her work can be seen and purchased in the ENC Store. She has worked with many different kinds of materials and resources, including molten glass, self-taken photography, and tile art.  Gray thrives to be eco-friendly and uses recycled material to create art and jewelry that can be enjoyed by others. When Patricia M. Gray was young she always seemed to have a creative touch, and has always found ways to express it in her work whether it is painting watercolors, redecorating homes, creating gardens, or trying Mixed Media techniques.  One of her most successful styles of work is taking something and re-working it in a new way, which can be…

Native Plant Sale & FREE Kean Coffee at the ENC Saturday!

The ENC staff has been enjoying the much needed rain.   The recent rains make this the perfect time to plant native plants! Whether you plant for beautification, the joy of gardening, or stress relief you should definitely come over to our Winter Native Plant Sale on Saturday, 2-16-13 from 9AM to 3PM. Our friends at Kean Coffee in Newport Beach will be donating coffee for the event, to help keep you awake while you shop!  Thanks, Kean! This is a fantastic opportunity to pick up a few gorgeous specimens! A few of the fun flora we are featuring are the Chaparral Currant (Ribes malvaceum), White Sage (Salvia apiana), Columbine (Aquilegia formosa), and Common Rush (Juncus patens) as well as many other beautiful plants.

Plant Sale Features Winter Flowering Natives

Locally native plants attract locally native wildlife like butterflies and hummingbirds, which depend on them for survival. These critters have been “growing up for thousands of years in this area, and feeding on the plants here,” said Mike Swingholm, the ENC’s Grounds Manager, “so you’ll have no trouble seeing them in your garden after bringing plants home from the sale this weekend!” This Saturday, February 16th from 9AM to 3PM you can learn all about these plants at the Environmental Nature Center’s Winter Plant Sale. The plant sale will focus on native plants that are flowering at this time of year. Native plants can help you save money on water, and add their colorful touch to a garden.  Planting natives will help you eliminate pesticide…

Green Gift Ideas for the Holidays!

Are you looking for some “green” gift ideas this holiday season? The ENC will be holding a Furoshiki Workshop on December 11 and an Upcycling Workshop on December 13, both at 6PM. Furoshiki are a type of traditional Japanese wrapping cloth that are a re-usable, eco-friendly way to wrap gifts, carry groceries, decorate the home, and so much more.  ENC Naturalist Leslie Helliwell will lead participants in an evening of creative wrapping.  They will learn techniques for wrapping everything from wine bottles to watermelons.  The program is $10. The Upcycing Workshop, led by local artist and ENC Traveling Naturalist Sama Wareh, will teach participants how to make gift quality jewelry out of old gift cards and magazines, storage containers out of baby food jars, and…

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