Tue08042015

News

E. coli found in Los Altos water indicated breach, but only low risk

E. coli found in Los Altos water indicated breach, but only low risk


Courtesy of Microbe World
Colorized low-temperature electron micrograph of a cluster of E. coli bacteria

When E. coli and other bacteria were discovered in some Los Altos water last week, officials from the local water supplier, California Water...

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Schools

BCS hosts Stretch to Kindergarten program for underserved youth

BCS hosts Stretch to Kindergarten program for underserved youth


Traci Newell/Town Crier
The six-week, tuition-free Stretch to Kindergarten program, hosted at Bullis Charter School, serves children who have not attended preschool. A teacher leads children in singing about the parts of a butterfly, above.

Local un...

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Community

Google car painting project calls on artists

Google car painting project calls on artists


Google self-driving car

Already known as an innovator in the tech field, Google Inc. is now moving in on the art world.

The Mountain View-based company July 11 launched the “Paint the Town” contest, a “moving art experiment” that invites Califo...

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Sports

Pedaling with a purpose

Pedaling with a purpose


courtesy of
Rishi Bommannan Rishi Bommannan cycled from Bates College in Maine to his home in Los Altos Hills, taking several selfies along the way. He also raised nearly $13,000 for the Livestrong Foundation, which supports cancer patients.

When R...

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Comment

The truth about coyotes: Other Voices

The Town Crier’s recent article on coyotes venturing down from the foothills in search of sustenance referenced the organization Project Coyote (“Recent coyote attacks keep residents on edge,” July 1). Do not waste your time contac...

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Special Sections

Grant Park senior program made permanent

Grant Park senior program made permanent


Photos by Alicia Castro/Town Crier
Local residents participate in an exercise class at the Grant Park Senior Center, above. Betsy Reeves, below left with Gail Enenstein, lobbied for senior programming in south Los Altos.

It all began when Betsy Reev...

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Business

New State Street rug retailer has downtown Los Altos covered

New State Street rug retailer has downtown Los Altos covered


Alicia Castro/Town Crier
Los Altos Rug Gallery owner Fahim Karimi stocks his State Street store with a wall-to-wall array of floor coverings.

A new downtown business owner plans to roll out the red carpet – along with rugs of every other color –...

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Books

Book Signings

• Fritz and Nomi Trapnell have scheduled a book-signing party 4-6 p.m. Aug. 1 at their home, 648 University Ave., Los Altos.

Fritz and his daughter, Dana Tibbitts, co-authored “Harnessing the Sky: Frederick ‘Trap’ Trapnell, ...

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People

GRACE WILSON FRANKS

GRACE WILSON FRANKS

Resident of Los Altos

Grace Wilson Franks, our beloved mother and grandmother, left us peacefully on July 16, 2015 just a few weeks short of her 92nd birthday. She was born to Ross and Florence (Cruzan) Wilson in rural Tulare, California on Septem...

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Travel

Gearing up: Make travel more civilized with accessories

Gearing up: Make travel more civilized with accessories


Eren Göknar/Special to the Town Crier
San Francisco-based humangear Inc. sells totes, tubes and tubs for traveling.

In travel, as in romance, it’s the little things that count.

Beyond the glossy brochures lie the travel discomforts too mun...

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Stepping Out

Going out with a 'Bang'

Going out with a 'Bang'


Richard Mayer/Special to the Town Crier
“Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” stars, clockwise from top left, Alexander Sanchez, Sophia Sturiale, Deborah Rosengaus and Danny Martin.

Los Altos Stage Company and Los Altos Youth Theatre’s joint production of t...

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Spiritual Life

Build a 'light' house and get out of that dark place

Most of us have a place inside our hearts and minds that occasionally causes us trouble. For some, it is sadness, depression or despair. For others, it may be fear, anger, resentment or myriad other emotional “dark places” that at times seem to hij...

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Magazine

Inside Mountain View

Residents gather at NASA Ames for Pluto Flyby event

Residents gather at NASA Ames for Pluto Flyby event


Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
NASA Ames’ Pluto Flyover event kindles the imaginations of young attendees.

Sue Moore watched the July 20, 1969, moon landing beside patients and staff members of the San Francisco hospital where she worked as a nurse...

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Planting seeds of sustainability : Growing Earth-friendly vegetables

Courtesy of ARACONTENT

 

There was a time when it was the norm to go out in the yard and pull fresh vegetables from the soil. But through the years, we moved from the goodness of homegrown vegetables toward processed foods and microwave dinners.

Now consumers are becoming more aware of the financial value of growing their own vegetables, and how consuming fresh produce can bolster the health of their families – and the Earth’s.

Vegetable gardening might sound intimidating, but new technologies can make your thumb greener than ever. Combined with good old-fashioned growing techniques, your garden can be healthy and yield a bountiful crop with less effort than you’d imagine.

Here are some tips for a garden that is doubly green.

 

Water, water everywhere

But not too much. A balance needs to be struck when it comes to watering a vegetable garden, especially during drought conditions. Plants need adequate moisture, but overwatering can be bad for vegetation and wasteful.

Installing an irrigation system is a good way to keep water usage at ideal levels. Plus, you don’t have to plan a schedule around watering times. There are user-friendly, affordable solutions that connect to outdoor spigots and a good way to ensure that plants get the water they need without the waste.

Watering timers can make watering easier. Keep in mind that it’s best to water in the early morning, when the sun is lower in the sky, every other day for 30 to 60 minutes. More information about watering vegetable gardens is available at www.misterlandscaper.com.

One man’s garbage

In this case, garbage can be a fertilizer – a veritable treasure for gardeners. If you feel guilty about throwing out vegetable and fruit peelings, rinds or scraps, your intuition might be telling you that there’s a better way to handle leftovers. Composting is a great way to make use of organic matter that is otherwise thrown away.

Building a compost heap is relatively easy, and it will continue giving back to your garden and the environment. The four necessary ingredients for composting, according to California’s CalRecycle program, are nitrogen, from sources such as grass clippings or throwaway veggie scraps; carbon, from sawdust or twigs; water and air.

Once the compost is at an ideal level of decomposition – it will be uniformly dark brown and crumbly – spread it on your garden to give plants a nutrient boost.

 

Get growing – organically

From the moment you plant a garden, think organic. The most basic and fun choice of all is deciding which plants to grow. Choose organic seeds and starters so that you know you’re buying into an Earth-friendly business venture – there’s the added bonus of knowing that your plants won’t be tainted with harmful chemicals.

When it comes to maintaining your garden, you’ll probably require more than compost. Look for products recognized as organic by organizations such as the USDA or the Organic Materials Review Institute.

When you follow green-gardening principles, you are planting a seed of sustainability for the planet we inhabit.

-ARAContent

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