Join us for monthly Western Hort programs designed to inform, educate and inspire the dedicated plant lover. Admission is $10 for non-members and FREE for WHS and California Horticultural Society members.


Meetings are held 9 times a year on the second Wednesday of the month and feature a lecture and slide presentation by a guest horticultural specialist. Each program also includes a member-led discussion and demonstration of unusual plants, as well as a plant sale of diverse plant varieties donated by members and local nurseries. All are welcome!


Current meeting location:   7:00pm on Zoom!       Register on Eventbrite for meeting link

If you enjoy the talks given at our meetings and want to help the Western Horticultural Society sustain our program, you might like to sponsor one of our speakers! Your donation helps cover the costs of hosting a speaker and we will note your name as sponsor in our newsletter. You can choose the month or speaker of your choice or perhaps you have a speaker you would like to propose? Contact Leslie Dean lesliekdean@sonic.net about donations or questions.   

February 10, 2021 7:15pm via Zoom

You CAN Garden For Life!

With Toni Gattone

This informative and inspirational ‘how-to’ seminar delivers dozens of tips, tools, and techniques enabling gardeners of all ages and abilities to adapt and be resilient when your body doesn’t work the way it used to, so you can garden for life in comfort and safety, with ease and joy.

Take home tips:

• Cultivate new ways to garden to save time, money, and above all, energy.

• Re-envision your garden’s size and accessibility for greater comfort and ease.

• Re-think your garden to include containers, raised beds and vertical gardens

   for no-bend gardening.

• Replace uneven flagstone paths with solid surface hardscapes for greater safety.

• Adapt your favorite garden tools for little or no cost.

• Discover new ergonomic tools to make gardening easier on your hands,

   back, hips, and your entire body.

After college, Toni taught school then had a career delivering presentation skills to corporate executives. She joined the National Speakers Association and served on their local board of directors.

In 1990, her entrepreneurial spirit bloomed when she created her sales company in the gift and garden industry.

In 2011, Toni became a Master Gardener and began teaching as a way of giving back to her community.

Today Toni Gattone is a speaker with a passion to help gardeners of all ages and abilities to garden for life. Toni knows from experience that physical limitations are the reason we need to re-evaluate how and when we garden, and how we can rework our gardens for greater comfort and safety.

Toni speaks to audiences at garden clubs, national flower and garden shows, Master Gardener symposiums, women and senior groups.

Now an author, Toni’s book, The Lifelong Gardener, Garden with Ease & Joy at Any Age, was published by Timber Press in August 2019 and is resonating with so many gardeners that it's now in its second printing.

March 10, 2021 7:30pm via Zoom

Beauty and Botany in the Far Reaches

With Kelly Dodson and Sue Milliken

A look at some of the unique plants in the Far Reaches Botanical Conservancy collection that are suited for mild climates.  We will do a bit of plant hunting in southern China, Vietnam and Argentina and look at some of our favorite rarities which we (zone 7b) have to coddle in greenhouses.


Kelly and Sue have spent their lives learning and working with plants in nurseries, botanic gardens and plant hunting expeditions. 

They are owners of Far Reaches Farm whose extensive collection of plants is spectacularly unfocused.   

The nursery has been featured in Pacific Horticulture, Horticulture, Garden Gate and Martha Stewart Living and they are contributing editors for Fine Gardening magazine.  

They are also directors of Far Reaches Botanical Conservancy, a non-profit whose mission is the acquisition and conservation of vulnerable plants of wild and cultivated origin that are new to North America.  


Visit them at www.farreachesfarm.com or Far Reaches Botanical Conservancy

April 14, 2021 7:00pm via Zoom

The Summer-Dry Garden: Beyond Mediterranean

With Saxon Holt

Saxon Holt will present on his new book which he co-authored with Nora Harlow, Gardening in Summer-Dry Climates (Timber Press, January 2021). Against the backdrop of his acclaimed garden photography, Holt will explore how the entire Pacific coast can be described as a summer-dry climate, a broader description than mediterranean, and applies to gardens from San Diego to Seattle.


Saxon Holt is a photojournalist who has spent more than 40 years exploring Kingdom Plantae and the fundamental importance of plants to the health of the planet.

A lifelong gardener, he abandoned commercial photography when he discovered garden publishers and could no longer stay in a studio.

His work has been featured in diverse publications, from Architectural 

Digest and Pacific Horticulture magazine,to Smithsonian and Money 


May 12, 2021 7:00pm via Zoom

When is a Weed a Weed?

How to ID and Control Them

With Steve Fennimore, extension specialist & weed scientist, UC Davis

Weeds occur every day in our environment. Some species are natives and some are invasive. There are weeds that are highly poisonous like poison hemlock, and others that are delicious if properly prepared such as steamed burning nettle which

tastes like spinach.

We will discuss the characteristics of weeds that make them difficult to manage such as seed dormancy, dispersal and the perennial life cycle.

Additional topics will be weed identification, weed competition and the damage

that weeds inflict. We will discuss cultural, physical and chemical weed control methods, with a focus on how to control weeds using organic-compliant methods.

Steve Fennimore is an extension specialist and weed scientist with the University of California, Davis located at Salinas.

Since 1997, Steve has conducted a research and extension program focused on weed management in vegetables, flowers and strawberries in coastal production areas of California. His specialization is in non-chemical weed management for strawberry and vegetable crops.

Projects in his lab include automated weed removal and steam for soil disinfestation.

Steve grew up on a vegetable farm in western Oregon. From 1983 to 1993, he worked in the agricultural chemical industry holding research and development positions in California, Mississippi and Indiana with ICI Americas/Zeneca. Steve left industry and returned to graduate school at Purdue University where he received his PhD in weed science in 1997.


PO Box 166,  

Mountain View, CA 94042


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