Hardy and helpful southwest desert plants can add richness to your kitchen, your medicine chest, your home, and your garden, as well as enhancing the  lives of your neighborhood songbirds and wildlife.  Our classes and workshops show you easy, fun, and healthy ways to incorporate our native plants into your life. Come enjoy learning with us!

Southwest Native Plants
for Food, Fun, & Healing
with Robin Kobaly

Saturday, May 19th, 2018 | 12:30 – 4:30 pm
Workshop Full

Plant Use Class Collage_Large

4-Hour Workshop at The Plant Yoda’s Den

Great fun, lots of demonstrations, samples, and displays!

 

PresenterRobin KobalyBotanist, Founder and President of
The Power of Plants, and Executive Director of  The SummerTree Institute

  • Saturday May 19, 2018
                   12:30 – 4:30 pm

  • The Plant Yoda’s Den
                   Morongo Valley, CA 92256 ~ Directions sent upon registration

  • Workshop registration includes:

                  ~ 4-hour workshop with displays & demonstrations

                  ~ Hands-on plant specimens for identification

                  ~ Helpful handouts

                  ~ Samples served for edible plants

  • Fee: $45

                  ~ Enrollment is limited. Please reserve early to assure your spot.

Robin teaching at Plant Yoda's Den_2819

Join us in the intimate setting of the unique and creative “Plant Yoda’s Den”, the home where Robin grew up, and where her mother, Babs Kobaly, taught her own native plant use classes for forty years. Babs had transformed her home into part apothecary, part art-house, and part fantasy world for her grandchildren, reflecting her passions as a native plant teacher, fanciful artist, and playful kid-lover.  In honor of her late mother, the great room of Babs’ home has been remodeled to open it up for classes and workshops on the very topics that she and Babs researched together as Robin grew up.

We invite you to experience this legendary locale as we introduce you to our desert native plants through an immersive approach — through smell, taste, touch, and sight — all with accounts of each plant’s special gifts and traditional powers that can be incorporated into modern-day life. Workshop participants will explore hardy and helpful wild desert plants that can add richness to your kitchen, your medicine chest, your home, and your garden, as well as enhancing the lives of your neighborhood wildlife.

This four-hour workshop offers a fascinating look at ancient and traditional uses of desert medicinal and food plants, and presents ways to adapt those uses to fit today’s needs. Find out why these powerful native plants’ survival strategies make them so useful to us today. Explore which native food and healing plants can be used successfully and safely, and explore the many other benefits of growing these amazing herbal remedies, edible harvests, and utilitarian providers in your own yard. This popular workshop includes demonstrations and samples, plus tips on identifying each plant, as well as discussions about harvesting native plant species in a respectful and sustainable way.

It’s fun learning how our native desert plants can serve as food, beverages, art, musical instruments, utensils, and healing remedies for humans. Each workshop is unique, as we include native plants that are in season at that time, so we can sample flower buds, blossoms, fruit, roots, shoots, and seeds that are ready for harvest at that time. You will look at our desert native plants with a new perspective after experiencing this comprehensive workshop.


To reserve your space
, or for more information
about this event:

Call The Power of Plants (760) 363-1166

Or email robin@powerofplants.com

You may reserve your space and enroll now in the workshop:


# of Participants



(Note: Purchases made with a non-PayPal credit card may post to your statement
as a purchase made in San Jose, PayPal’s corporate office)

You may also reserve your space and enroll by sending a check for $45 to:
The Power of Plants
P.O. Box 800
Morongo Valley, CA 92256

Note: Please call or email us before sending your check to make sure we reserve your spot. Workshops fill up very fast.

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Check out our other events and workshops!  

“Desert Soils ~ More Than Just Dirt!”

Presented for the meeting of the

Desert Horticultural Society of the Coachella Valley

 

Wednesday, January 17th, 2018 | 6:00 pm

 A Presentation by Robin Kobaly | Exec. Director of
The SummerTree Institute

  • Wednesday, January 17, 2018
  • Presentation 6:00 pm
  • UCR Palm Desert
    75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA 92211
  • Free admission

    A serene landscape of boulders and sand, right? You won’t believe everything that’s going on underground!

You will be amazed to discover all the incredible underground happenings  in our desert soils that affect not only how our gardens and wild plants grow, but also how our ecosystems function.  “Desert Soils – More Than Just Dirt” is a presentation that just may make you believe in magic — well, at least help you to realize all the nearly mystical relationships that are going on underfoot which control so much of what we see above ground.

Robin will describe the other-worldly underground root partnerships (mycorrhizal fungi associated with plant roots) that help most desert plants survive, and why added fertilizers can damage that relationship. You will learn cutting-edge research about how these root partners form caliche to assist in our desert soil’s sequestration of CO2, and how what we plant can help reduce global CO2 levels. We will explore ancient biological soil crusts, and see how they come alive after rain, cementing our soil grains together to prevent erosion. Join Robin as she unravels complex systems in understandable terms, including the conversion of gaseous nitrogen in the air into soluble fertilizer in the ground by soil microbes; ancient desert pavement; desert varnish on rocks; hydrophobic desert soils (and how that affects how we irrigate), why deep water stakes are so effective to keep landscape plants healthy when soils are hot and dry, and some other cool stuff like the green algae that grows under our translucent desert rocks. You may never walk the same over our desert soils…

For more information, call The SummerTree Institute at (760) 363-7229, or email: robin@summertree.org.

You may also visit the Desert Horticultural Society of the Coachella Valley at www.deserthorticulturalsociety.org for more information.

 

Check out our other events and workshops!

“Great Native Alternatives to Traditional Yard Plants”

A Presentation by Robin KobalyBotanist, Executive Director of
The SummerTree Institute
for Master Gardeners – UC Cooperative Extension,
as part of  their 18-week Master Gardener Course

Wednesday, January 24th | 9-11 am
 UCR Palm Desert | 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA

  • Wednesday, January 24, 2018
  • Presentation 9-11 am
  • UCR Palm Desert 75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA 92211
  • Not open to the Public ~ however, you may sign up for a future Master Gardener course! (see below)
A bounty of southwest native plants are available to beautify your desert yard, using less water, less fertilizers, and bringing more wildlife into your yard.

A bounty of southwest native plants are available to beautify your desert yard, attracting beneficial songbirds while requiring less water, less fertilizers, and less maintenance.

A surprising variety of native plants can be used as alternatives to traditional exotic plants in solving your landscape challenges and fulfilling your landscape dreams. Using displays and samples of local native plants, Robin will show star-performing southern-California native plant alternatives, with a focus on Coachella Valley native plants, to replace common exotic ornamental landscape choices. You will find that you don’t have to settle on only the common, traditional choices to address your yard issues, but instead you’ll discover a wide pallet of alternative choices, many that grow in our own desert valleys and mountains. These native plants supply food, nectar, and shelter for our songbirds, both resident and migrating, so planting them adds to the health and stability of our environment. These “alter-natives” include some of the sturdiest, longest lived, and most water-wise plants available, requiring very little water, no pesticides, and no fertilizers. As an added bonus, some of these attractive plants can be used for beverages, snacks, healing remedies, home décor, and art, information which Robin will share, as well as local sources for these “Alter-Native” plants.

 

The Master Gardener Program includes an 18-week (50 hour) course to prepare graduates to fulfill their obligation of volunteering 50 hours each, supplying research-based objective gardening information to the general public.  Graduates accomplish this via email and phone helplines; teaching workshops on sustainable landscaping; growing food in backyard, community and school gardens; and in many other ways. The course covers topics specific to desert horticulture. The next 18-week class will begin in November at UCR Palm Desert. For more information about enrollment, course tuition, and schedule, contact Rosa Olaiz at rmolaiz@ucanr.edu.  Rosa is the Volunteer Coordinator for both the Master Gardener’s Desert and Riverside programs.

Check out our other events and workshops!

“Uses of SW Desert Plants for Food, Fun, Healing,
and Home Gardens”

Presented as part of the

12th Annual Desert Garden Community Day

 Saturday, October 28th, 2017
Events from 8:30 am – 4 pm

 A Presentation by Robin Kobaly | Exec. Director of

The SummerTree Institute

  • Saturday, October 28, 2017

  • 11:45 am – 12:30 pm Lecture

  • UCR Palm Desert
    75080 Frank Sinatra Drive, Palm Desert, CA 92211

  • Free admission

    Discover how you can use gifts from your southwest native landscape plants inside your home, for food, beverages, healing remedies, art, and more — yet another reason to plant native!

     

Join Robin as she presents ancient and traditional uses of our native desert plants, demonstrating ways to adapt them to fit today’s needs for food, healing remedies, tools, art, and more, besides their value as eco-friendly yard landscaping. Find out why these powerful native plants’ survival strategies make them so useful to us today. Learn how the unique qualities of each plant can add richness to the home, kitchen, medicine chest, garden, and more.

Our southwest desert native plants include some of the sturdiest, longest lived, and most water-wise plants available, requiring very little water, no pesticides, and no fertilizers. Some of these attractive plants for landscaping can also be used for beverages, snacks, healing remedies, home décor, and art, information which Robin will share during this eye-opening presentation.

You will leave with a new perspective on our amazing native plants and the valuable gifts they generously offer to us, both in our yards and inside our homes.

 

For more information, call The SummerTree Institute at (760) 363-7229, or email: robin@summertree.org.

The 12th Annual Desert Garden Community Day, 8:30 am – 4 pm, is co-sponsored by the Desert Horticultural Society of the Coachella Valley, UCR Palm Desert, UC Cooperative Extension, and UCCE Master Gardeners. This popular, free event will feature exhibits and information booths, demonstrations, and workshops on water-wise gardening, garden design, proper pruning techniques, irrigation practices and many other topics. For a full schedule of events, visit www.deserthorticulturalsociety.org

 

Stroll along a half-mile boardwalk under a lush canopy of cottonwood and willow trees as Robin shares secrets of the same plants that sustained Serrano Indians who inhabited Big Morongo Canyon for centuries. Come enjoy learning about our native plants with us!

 

Eco-Discovery Tour of
Big Morongo Canyon Preserve
with Robin Kobaly

Thursday June 29th

 

  • Thursday June 29, 2017
                   8:30 – 11:30 am

  • Big Morongo Canyon Preserve- Morongo Valley
                   11055 East Drive, Morongo Valley, CA 92256

  • With Robin KobalyBotanist, wildlife biologist

  • Tour Fee: $20 per person for 3-hour adventure


       ~ Enrollment is limited. Please reserve early to assure your spot.

Stroll along a half-mile boardwalk under a lush canopy of cottonwood and willow trees as Robin  shares secrets of the same native plants that sustained the Serrano Indians who inhabited this exact site for centuries. Big Morongo Creek flows through the 39,000-acre wildlife preserve in Morongo Valley, now part of the Sand to Snow National Monument, and provides a lush oasis and freshwater marsh for migratory and resident songbirds, bighorn sheep, mule deer, and more. On this 3-hour stream-side excursion, Robin will identify native plants, and describe uses of these desert plants for food, medicine, tools, clothing, and shelter. Edible samples of the same plants collected elsewhere by Robin will be shared along the route. You will hear about underground, unseen root partners that connect the plants in the community, which help to sustain the entire ecosystem. Robin will explain how migratory birds travel to and through the oasis in an intricate dance based on day-length cues, hormone changes, stored fat, night skies, and magnetic particles in their brains to arrive precisely at this site each year. Birds and other wildlife that may cross our path will be identified, and Robin will reveal fun stories about each creature. Each tour is unique, exploring different seasonal plants, birds, and trail options. Please call or email to reserve your spot; enrollment is limited to 15 adventurers.


To reserve your space
, or for more information
about this event:

  • Call The Power of Plants  (760) 363-1166

  • Or email robin@powerofplants.com

  • You may reserve your space and enroll now for the June 29th tour:


    # of Participants



    You may also reserve your space and enroll by sending a check for $20 to:

    The Power of Plants
    P.O. Box 800
    Morongo Valley, CA 92256

  • Note: Please call or email us before sending your check to make sure we reserve your spot. Events fill up very fast.

Click flyer to view full-size

Check out our other events and workshops!

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Stroll along a half-mile boardwalk under a lush canopy of cottonwood and willow trees as Robin shares secrets of the same plants that sustained Serrano Indians who inhabited Big Morongo Canyon for centuries. Come enjoy learning about our native plants with us!

 

Eco-Discovery Tour of
Big Morongo Canyon Preserve
with Robin Kobaly

Thursday June 29th

 

  • Thursday June 29, 2017
                   8:30 – 11:30 am

  • Big Morongo Canyon Preserve- Morongo Valley
                   11055 East Drive, Morongo Valley, CA 92256

  • With Robin KobalyBotanist, wildlife biologist

  • Tour Fee: $20 per person for 3-hour adventure


       ~ Enrollment is limited. Please reserve early to assure your spot.

Stroll along a half-mile boardwalk under a lush canopy of cottonwood and willow trees as Robin  shares secrets of the same native plants that sustained the Serrano Indians who inhabited this exact site for centuries. Big Morongo Creek flows through the 39,000-acre wildlife preserve in Morongo Valley, now part of the Sand to Snow National Monument, and provides a lush oasis and freshwater marsh for migratory and resident songbirds, bighorn sheep, mule deer, and more. On this 3-hour stream-side excursion, Robin will identify native plants, and describe uses of these desert plants for food, medicine, tools, clothing, and shelter. Edible samples of the same plants collected elsewhere by Robin will be shared along the route. You will hear about underground, unseen root partners that connect the plants in the community, which help to sustain the entire ecosystem. Robin will explain how migratory birds travel to and through the oasis in an intricate dance based on day-length cues, hormone changes, stored fat, night skies, and magnetic particles in their brains to arrive precisely at this site each year. Birds and other wildlife that may cross our path will be identified, and Robin will reveal fun stories about each creature. Each tour is unique, exploring different seasonal plants, birds, and trail options. Please call or email to reserve your spot; enrollment is limited to 15 adventurers.


To reserve your space
, or for more information
about this event:

  • Call The Power of Plants  (760) 363-1166

  • Or email robin@powerofplants.com

  • You may reserve your space and enroll now for the June 29th tour:


    # of Participants



    You may also reserve your space and enroll by sending a check for $20 to:

    The Power of Plants
    P.O. Box 800
    Morongo Valley, CA 92256

  • Note: Please call or email us before sending your check to make sure we reserve your spot. Events fill up very fast.

Click flyer to view full-size

Check out our other events and workshops!