orchard art

“The Heart of the Valley,” painted by Cathy Zander, is among the works on display in the Community Orchard Art Exhibition in the J. Gilbert Smith House Sept. 30 through Feb 20.

The Los Altos History Museum has scheduled an event combining art and green technology noon to 1:30 p.m. Oct. 2 on the museum’s grounds, 51 S. San Antonio Road.

Designed to encourage local residents to consider the importance and preservation of the Los Altos Heritage Orchard, an exhibition of apricot-themed artwork, “Community Orchard Art,” will be on display in the J. Gilbert Smith House, with an artist meet-and-greet.

The exhibition showcases the art of Los Altos ArtVenturers, a group of artists sponsored by the city’s Adult 50+ program. The art ranges from fabric collages to textural paintings featuring multiple techniques that reflect the importance of community and the rich heritage of Santa Clara Valley.

The exhibition will be on display in the gallery of the Smith House Sept. 30 through Feb. 20.

In addition to the exhibition, the event will feature a ceremony celebrating a water conservation grant to improve irrigation in the adjacent Los Altos Civic Center Heritage Orchard. The ceremony will mark the installation of water conservation technology, the result of the museum’s $4,997 grant from Valley Water.

By switching from spray irrigation to drip irrigation, the grant will help save thousands of gallons of water and demonstrate how residents can adapt similar technology on their own properties to conserve water.

“Our Heritage Orchard is truly the heart of this community and the civic center,” said Elisabeth Ward, the museum’s executive director. “The art exhibit in the Smith House celebrates its beauty, while the move from a spray to drip irrigation system will help make caring for the orchard, planted by J. Gilbert Smith in 1901, sustainable.”

Panel discussion

In a related program, a panel of experts is set to discuss “Water Conservation: Smart Irrigation” 4:30-5:30 p.m. Oct. 12 via Zoom.

Panelists will include Manny Hernandez, municipal services director for the city of Los Altos; Frank Niccoli, program director for the Department of Environmental Horticulture and Design at Foothill College; and Phil Doetsch, orchardist, contractor and owner of A Farmer’s Son Tractor Service.

To register for the free panel discussion, visit losaltoshistory.org/SmartIrrigation.

For more information on the History Museum, visit losaltoshistory.org.