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Growing green: Local startup reinvigorates farming, one yard at a time


Ellie Van Houtte/ Town Crier
Urban Edible Farm Co. founder Kamila Lambert transplants strawberry plants into a raised bed for Los Altos client Kate Evard.

Staring at a sea of grassy front-yard islands from a half-acre garden on the Santa Clara University campus, Kamila Lambert planted seeds for an unusual startup.

“I would look around and ask myself why people had lawns instead of using their yards to garden and give back,” said Lambert, who grew up in Los Altos and studied public health science and environmental studies at the university.

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Reclaiming dirt patches: How to beautify a parking strip


Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier
Butterflies are attracted to the purple flowers of lilac verbena, a fragrant, mounding perennial that does best in full sun. In a parking strip, the colors blend well with pink or white yarrow.

In many neighborhoods, the most unloved parts of the landscape are the parking strips between the curb and the sidewalk. At a presentation sponsored by the Gardening with Natives group of the California Native Plant Society last year, landscape designer Carrie Jensen advocated reclaiming those dirt patches.

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Large stones add design element to gardens


Sarah Herman/Special to the Town Crier
Incorporating natural boulders into a landscape represents mass, durability and stability and can evoke reassuring permanence.

Most of us have gasped in awe and wonder at the phenomenal geological formations of Yosemite, Yellowstone or the Grand Canyon. Nature’s most breathtaking landscapes, carved by wind and water over millennia, trigger our deepest emotions. We respond to the harmonious balance of rock, plants and water and experience a kind of transcendent beauty.

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