Gamble Garden hosts children's events

The Elizabeth F. Gamble Garden, a 2.5-acre property in Palo Alto featuring herb and rose gardens and a historical house, has scheduled two events for children.

• November Second Saturday, 10 a.m. to noon Nov. 10. Activities will include a nature hunt for critters with Garden Director Richard Hayden and Garden Guides, a worm measuring contest, crafts and tours of the Gamble Garden House, built circa 1902. All ages are welcome, but the event is ideal for ages 3-10. Admission is free, but registration is required.

How El Camino Real developers fight to please old and new Los Altos

Altos One
Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
Christian Lopez, left, an employee of Traffic Management Inc. of San Jose, reviews renderings for the proposed Altos One development along El Camino Real during a break last week.

A Los Altos resident recently shared on Nextdoor her fear of high-rise developments making their way to her city’s side of El Camino Real, sparking the realization among others who weighed in that another multistory condominium complex is already under construction right next to the planned Altos One complex.

The Aug. 26 Nextdoor thread generated nearly 100 comments. The original post, by resident Elizabeth Dunson, concluded with a slippery-slope argument: “Note that once a five-story building is allowed, everyone wants to build five stories.” Norma Shroder of the Eastenders neighborhood replied with a picture of the wood beginnings of the 58-foot-tall, 21-unit building at 4880 El Camino Real, a project the council approved in August 2016.

Local efforts aim to prepare residents for emergencies

September is designated National Preparedness Month, presenting the ideal time to take a few moments to consider the safety of your home, family and neighbors in the event of disaster. Following are some tips to get you started.

Be ready to go

As evident with recent wildfires, disasters can happen at any time and may escalate rapidly. Be ready to leave your home quickly, and map a couple of evacuation routes to reach safety.

How to transform a narrow side yard from overlooked to instrumental

Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier
A snowdrop bush shows off its delicate structure, trained to a trellis so that it can fit into a narrow side yard.

Challenging situations often lead to new opportunities. So it is with landscaping narrow side yards.

In memoriam: Goodbye to old oak

Courtesy of Molly Matthews
The oak tree at Montecito Preschool was cut down last November. Over the years, thousands of children played beneath its branches.

The California live oak tree at Montecito Preschool had to be cut down last November. Molly Matthews, co-founder of the preschool, reflects on the loss.

Seasons in the greenhouse

Tanya Kucak/Special to the Town Crier
Built under the shade of a deciduous tree and in view of the kitchen window, this greenhouse protects tender seedlings and transplants from weather and pests.

Growing your own plants from seeds or cuttings requires nothing more than a dedicated area of your yard or house where you will be sure to check in daily. I’ve used everything from tables in front of a sunny south-facing window indoors to jury-rigged cold frames and north-facing patios outdoors. But a small backyard greenhouse is fun if you enjoy propagating plants year-round and watching them grow.

Before you take on the cost and responsibility of a greenhouse, consider whether you have the space, what you like to grow and how much you will use it.

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