Eight design principles for your landscaping project

Eight design principles for your landscaping project

From Garden Design Magazine —
It’s tempting, in a field as subjective as garden design, to feel that rules do not apply. However, after 28 years and hundreds of projects later, I’ve come to believe in certain rules and guidelines that are neither fussy nor constraining. All have proven invaluable to me over my years of garden-making. Applied by any gardener, amateur or professional, they will result in a more successful, satisfying design.

Read the Story (And Enjoy the Magazine’s Website)

Photos — construction continues on Oroville Dam spillway

Photos — construction continues on Oroville Dam spillway

From the California Department of Water Resources —

Photo Above:
Crews work on structural rebar panels for the new side walls on the lower chute of the Lake Oroville flood control spillway in Butte County, California.

Photo Below:
The lower chute of the Lake Oroville flood control spillway. Construction crews are rebuilding the floor and the side walls of the chute.

Photo Below:
Sheena Williams of Kiewit Infrastructure looks for nicks in the coating on the rebar before structural concrete is poured into a panel on the lower chute of the Lake Oroville flood control spillway.

Coalition forms to protect California’s salmon

Coalition forms to protect California’s salmon

From the San Francisco Chronicle — A coalition of government agencies and advocates for sustainable fisheries came together Tuesday to launch a long-term effort to save California’s beleaguered salmon populations in the Sacramento and San Joaquin river systems.

Read the Story

Legislature to vote on a new tax on drinking water

Legislature to vote on a new tax on drinking water

On Friday, California’s Senate Appropriation Committee in Sacramento will vote on Senate Bill 623, which would establish a state tax on drinking water. The purpose of the bill is to generate funds over the next 15 years to clean up contaminated groundwater and improve faulty water systems in rural areas throughout the state.

The Association of California Water Agencies (ACWA), of which Helix is a member, opposes the bill.

Read The Mercury News’ “First-ever water tax proposed to tackle unsafe drinking water in California”

Watch ACWA’s Video

Water Authority relining pipe under La Mesa and Spring Valley

Water Authority relining pipe under La Mesa and Spring Valley

In late September, the San Diego County Water Authority will begin rehabilitating more than four miles of a large-diameter pipeline between Lake Murray and Sweetwater Reservoir. The 66-inch and 69-inch diameter pipe provides water to Helix Water District and the Sweetwater Authority.

The pipeline runs under Baltimore Drive and along Spring Street in La Mesa, and extends south into Spring Valley. The $28.6 million project is part of the Water Authority’s multi-decade program to rehabilitate 82 miles of pre-stressed concrete cylinder pipeline in its conveyance system.

Click Here for Project Map

Construction crews will conduct most of the work underground, inside the pipe. They will access the pipe by excavating and entering the pipeline through 17 access sites, or portals. Most construction activities will occur at these access portals, which will be spaced approximately 525 to 2,500 feet apart.

The Water Authority began communicating with stakeholders along the pipeline last December. If you’d like to know more about the project, the Water Authority will host two open houses in September for residents living near the project and provide information at local events:

August 31st
Information table and staff to answer questions at the La Mesa Car Show

September 7th 
Open house at Portals 1 and 2
– Portal 1 is located on Baltimore Drive, just south of Laport/El Paso Street, in La Mesa
– Portal 2 is located on Baltimore Drive, just south of Bertro Drive, in La Mesa

September 14th
Open house at Portal 3
– Portal 3 is located on Baltimore Drive, about 3/4 mile south of Lake Murray Blvd.

September 27th
Information table and staff to answer questions at the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce breakfast

September 29th
Information table and staff to answer questions at the La Mesa Farmer’s Market

Explore the Project @ SDCWA.org

This will be your new favorite website

This will be your new favorite website

Are you working on, or thinking about, installing a new landscape? If the answer yes, we found your muse.

Gardenista.com is the spot for landscaping ideas and know-how, right up there with houzz.com, which we featured in a blog post last year.

For a lot of us, the “what do want our new landscape to be?” question is a lot scarier than the hard work of clearing out old plants and installing new ones. This is the creative part of a landscaping project, and it conjures up equal parts excitement and anxiety. Go to Gardenista.com and let beautiful photos of beautiful landscapes instill you with ideas and confidence.

This site is not all about water efficiency — it features properties throughout the country. But a lot of these landscapes are in California. Click on the See All the Winners of the Gardenista Considered Design Awards link at the top of their site and explore the Best Curb Appeal, Best Edible Garden and Best Outdoor Living Space entries. Then hover on the Garden Design 101 link and let the learning and creativity begin.

Explore Gardenista.com

 

Learn how to photograph plants — Wednesday evening at The Garden

Learn how to photograph plants — Wednesday evening at The Garden

Invite a friend to The Water Conservation Garden this Wednesday, August 9th, 5:00-7:00pm for the Plant Paparrazzi class. Docent instructors Harold Bailey and Sally Long will cover the technical and composition aspects of taking stunning photos of plants and landscapes, whether you have an SLR camera or a smartphone. If you have a tripod, bring it along. Beginner to intermediate level.

Plant Paparrazzi Class
5:00-7:00pm, Wednesday, August 9th
At The Water Conservation Garden
Members Free, Non-members $10

Throwback Thursday: The San Diego Flume

Throwback Thursday: The San Diego Flume

Remember Ken Kramer’s About San Diego series on KPBS?

KPBS general manager Tom Karlo told the San Diego Union Tribune in 2015, when Kramer retired, “What made his work special is he truly wanted the community to know about the richness and history of all of San Diego. He talked about places they know, and he talked about places that, after they heard him, they wanted to go see.”

Above all else, Kramer was known as a storyteller, and nobody tells the story of the San Diego Flume better than he did. The flume — which marks the beginning of Helix Water District’s long history — brought fresh water from the mountains to urban San Diego for the first time. Today, we still go to the mountains for fresh water — the Rockies, Sierra and our local Cuyamacas.

Enjoy the video — courtesy of KPBS.