- Author: Anne Schellman
Currently, we are installing demonstration gardens to be used as outdoor classrooms that the public can visit anytime, and we need your help!
Our Pollinator Garden is in the installation stage, and we could not be more thrilled. Currently, the irrigation and native plants are going in. Our Master Gardener volunteers were hard at work leveling, raking, and planting just this week.
A big “thank you” to the West Resource Conservation District that helped us prepare the garden site, and to our local North San Joaquin Valley Chapter of the California Native Plant Society https://nsj.cnps.org/ for purchasing and donating the native plants! Many of these species are unusual and not normally found in the landscape. Although newly planted, everyone is welcome to stop by and visit*.
Your Funds Help Make this Garden Happen
Help make this demonstration garden come to life! Funds will be used to purchase additional plants, tools, and educational signage. Our big funding goal is a decomposed granite walkway. This is a pricey item, which can cost several thousand dollars. The benefits are a pathway accessible to everyone that avoids runoff and allows good drainage.
How to Give
If you prefer to donate by check, please make it out to: UC Regents and send to:
UCC Stanislaus County Master Gardener Program
3800 Cornucopia Way, Ste A
Modesto, CA 95358
We look forward to meeting you in the near future in our “outdoor classroom” aka Pollinator Garden for classes on pollinators, California native plants, and how you can support them in your backyard garden, patio, apartment, or classroom.
* Our gardens are located at the Ag Center complex on the corner of Crows Landing and Service Roads in Modesto at 3800 Cornucopia Way, 95358. The Pollinator Garden is on the east side of the Stanislaus building, while the Sensory Garden is on the west side./h3>/h3>/h3>/h3>
- Author: Anne Schellman
Giving Tuesday is November 29, 2022! Please join us in this opportunity to give to your local UCCE Stanislaus County Master Gardener Program. Your dollars are used locally to make our county a better place.
Thanks to generous donations from individuals like you, as well as in-kind donations and funding from sponsors, our Sensory Garden has been installed! In fact, the last landscaping step, adding mulch, will be done by volunteers on Giving Tuesday!
These photos show our Master Gardeners installing drip irrigation donated by Hunter Industries, and plants donated by Frantz Nursery.
Where can I see the Sensory Garden?
This garden is located on the east side of the Stanislaus Building, at the main entryway. The garden will be used
The Pollinator Garden
Thanks to a generous donation from the West Stanislaus Resource Conservation District, we are starting our Pollinator Garden. The Great Valley Seed Company donated milkweed seeds which will be planted in the garden, too. Next week, volunteers will be installing irrigation and planting.
How You Can Help
Any amount you can donate helps us grow our gardens and our program! The purpose of the gardens is to showcase low-water use plants the public can see anytime. In addition, the areas will be used as outdoor classrooms to teach topics such as drip irrigation, pollinator gardening, plant identification, low water use gardening, and more!
We are looking to raise $5,000 to help with irrigation installation, tools, seeds, and other needed materials. We are a 501 c (3), so your donation is tax-deductible. https://ucanr.edu/sites/givingtuesday/ This site allows you to give by credit card. (A fee is taken for the use of a credit card.) If you would prefer to give by check, make your check out to “UC Regents” and mail it to:
UCCE Master Gardener Program
3800 Cornucopia Way, Ste A
Modesto, CA 95358
Thanks for your support!
- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
When Smith provided 10 framed insect displays for wall decorations at the Neighborly Pest Management, Roseville, the president-owner James “Jim” Steed gifted him with $1500, which Smith promptly donated to the museum.
"Jim knew that his check would be a donation to the Bohart Museum," Smith said, "and that was the reason for his generosity. As a past president of the statewide Pest Control Operators of California (PCOC) and the local chapter, Jim had previously gotten nice checks into the Bohart's hands and has high praise for the value of the museum."
Smith, a longtime friend and colleague of Steed (since 1993), requested $500. “Jim thought that was far too low,” Smith said, adding “It's a wonderful company. Neighborly Pest Management has been in business since 1978, nearly 45 years, and is one of the most forward-thinking and professional companies I've ever known.”
“They recently did a magnificent job of remodeling the interior of their office—they did it themselves--and wanted to decorate the walls with something entomological,” Smith related. “Since I've made these framed displays before, they thought that was perfect and said they'd like all I could make for them and would pay top dollar.”
“The insect specimens,” Smith said, “are primarily from surplus material from that massive Chiapas, Mexico donation of papered bugs the Bohart Museum received in 2019, all collected in 1971-1974 by the renowned Lepidopterist Robert Wind, (1912-1975). His niece lives in Rio Linda and she was the family member who ended up with the huge amount of material that no other relative wanted.”
For the Neighborly Pest Management project, Smith spread all the specimens, including butterflies, bees and beetles, and created the frames, using “lots of surplus glass.”
“A flag on their wall was made from repurposed 2x6 redwood decking from the original owner's property and Jim said he wanted the USA flag to be the largest and most prominent thing in their office,” Smith commented.
Smith praised Steed's dedication toward helping minorities get involved in pest control industry management.
Steed and colleague Ashley Clark, director and vice president of Allenstrategic Communications (Steed worked with her on pyrethroid training) founded a national movement, Black Ownership Matters, to find ways to encourage minorities, blacks in particular, to enter pest control management. The two launched the project in 2020, on Juneteenth (June 19), a day that commemorates the official end of slavery in the United States.
“We have mentors and mentees in Black Ownership Matters,” Steed said. He recently took several mentees to a national pest management conference.
Said Smith: “They find ways to train them and get them started and they also encourage current black-owned pest businesses to continue to do well.”
Neighborly Pest Management, a family-owned business founded on April 1, 1978 (“no fooling,” Steed quipped), now includes 30 employees serving the pest management needs of residential, commercial, and schools, among other entities, in the five-county area of Sacramento, Placer, Yolo, Solano and El Dorado. The team is also currently working in Solano to control the glassy-winged sharpshooter, Homalodisca vitripennis, an agricultural pest threatening vineyards.
Smith and Steed first met in 1993, the beginning of their 28-year friendship. “It's a win-win for us,” said Steed. “We not only have these excellent framed specimen displays but we will always have of piece of Jeff in our office. He's a good man and we support him any way we can.”
Smith received the 2015 “Friend of the College” award from the UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences for his volunteer work in the Bohart Museum. Nominator Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum and a UC Davis distinguished professor of entomology, said at the time that “Jeff has spread the wings of 200,000 butterflies and moths, which translates into something like 33,000 hours of work, over a 27-year period. He has brought us international acclaim and saved us $160,000 through donations of specimens and materials, identification skills and his professional woodworking skills. This does not include the thousands of hours he has donated in outreach programs that draw attention to the museum, the college and the university.” (link to https://ucanr.edu/blogs/blogcore/postdetail.cfm?postnum=18627
To date, Smith has made 2,300 drawers for the museum, and about 350 to 400 are from repurposed redwood from old decks and old fences. “I've spread, likely, a couple hundred thousand Leps,” Smith related. “I figure it at a rate of maybe 6,000 per year for the past 30 or so years. I started doing some sorting of the neglected Lepidoptera collection while it was still in Briggs Hall, and accelerated once it moved to the current location in the Academic Surge Building on Crocker Lane.
“Right now, I'm continuing to sort and spread Leps for (Bohart lab assistant) Brennen Dyer's Delta Project.” Smith is also working on trap-caught material from Texas, and on Nov. 11 will do an evening spreading class for the UC Davis Entomology Club. For the occasion, Smith has crafted 40 new spreading boards and will supply the club with not only the boards, but pins and hooked probes, and “a LOT of relaxed butterflies from Chiapas, surplus material we received in 2019.”
The Bohart lepidopterist also presents information on butterflies and moths via videos, Zoom meetings, and at open houses (currently on hold due to the COVID-19 precautions).
Smith, who moved to Rocklin from San Jose in 1987, was introduced to the Bohart Museum collection in 1988 (then at Briggs Hall) and began volunteering that year. He is the sole curator of the Lepidoptera collection. In addition to the pens, the entomologist has also “made a lot of gifts to give to friends, including kitchen cutting boards, tissue box covers, and miscellaneous other things as needed.”
“I love the creativity,” Smith said.
The Bohart Museum, home of a global collection of nearly eight million insect specimens. is located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building on Crocker Lane. The museum, currently closed to the public due to COVD-19 restrictions, is also the home of a live “petting zoo,” comprised of Madagasgar hissing cockroaches, stick insects and tarantulas; and a gift shop (now online) stocked with insect-themed jewelry, t-shirts, hoodies, books, posters and collecting equipment. The gift shop also includes Smith's finely crafted wooden pens.
- Author: Anne E Schellman
Despite COVID-19, the Sensory and Pollinator Garden committee volunteers have been hard at work, drawing up their “wish list” of desired plants, path materials, benches, and other structures. Our goal today is to raise $3,000 more for the gardens.
We envision accessible gardens not only for employees of the Ag Center, but for anyone to visit and explore. Bring a picnic lunch, snap photos of plants (and their name tags) and get inspired by plant arrangements.
Please make your gift for #BigDigDay https://ucanr.edu/sites/BigDig/ now to help us fund the Sensory and Pollinator Gardens! Navigate to Stanislaus County, and then using the drop-down menu, select “Master Gardener Fund.” Your donation will go directly to help fund the garden. You can also send a check made out to UC Regents to 3800 Cornucopia Way Ste A, Modesto, CA 95358.
We have just learned that thanks to matching gifts from UC ANR, $100 will go to the first 40 groups that raise $500 or more total, a $250 prize to the first 4 groups with the most NEW donors, and a $500 prize will go to the first 10 groups that secure a single $500 gift or sponsor. Please donate as soon as you can to help us match our funds, and thank you for considering our project!/h3>
- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Spider wasps belong to the family Pompilidae, and are aculeate (stinging) wasps. Most spider wasps (also known as spider-hunting wasps) capture, sting and paralyze their prey. The worldwide family is comprised of some 5,000 described species in six subfamilies.
“A U-Haul was needed to transport the collection from Brookings to Davis last weekend,” said Bohart Museum director and UC Davis distinguished professor Lynn Kimsey.
Wasbauer, who died in the spring, was a global expert on spider wasps and a scientific collaborator with Kimsey. He was a member of the Bohart Museum Society and a strong supporter of the museum.
“The donation consists of a diversity of aculeate wasps but 95 percent are spider wasps (Pompilidae), an estimated 50,000 specimens from all over the world, in 180 drawers, in 13 24-drawer cabinets,” Kimsey said. “This is material he had been accumulating since the 1960s.”
Wasbauer studied entomology and biosystematics at UC Berkeley, where he received his bachelor's degree and doctorate (1958). “Like many entomologists of his generations,” Kimsey said, “Marius was an instructor in preventive medicine in the U.S. 7th Army Medical Service at Fort Sam Houston, Texas.” He joined the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) as a systematist in September 1958. His CDFA career spanned 34 years.
Wasbauer was a fellow of the California Academy of Sciences; president and secretary of the Pacific Coast Entomological Society; research associate with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS), a member of Sigma Xi, the scientific research honor society; a member of the Biosystematists Society; and a research associate at UC Davis.
“He was generous with his time, and worked with many scientists and students around the world,” Kimsey said. “However, aside from his family and wasps, his other greatest love was fishing.”
Marius and his wife, Joanne, longtime supporters of the Bohart Museum, frequently offered annual challenge grants of $5000, matching donations of other donors up to $5000. They hoped to inspire others to give.
The Wasbauers participated in a Bohart Museum Bioblitz to Belize in 2017, a trip led by entomologists David Wyatt, a professor at Sacramento City College, and Fran Keller, now a professor at Folsom Lake College. Keller, who holds a doctorate in entomology from UC Davis, is a Bohart Museum research associate.
A trio of entomologists—Lynn Kimsey and her husband, forensic entomologist Robert Kimsey of the Department of Entomology and Nematology; and Bohart Museum research associate Brennen Dyer—prepared a space in the Bohart for the large donation. They unloaded the truck with Kimsey friends, retired Placer County Sheriff Mike Whitney and his wife, Becky.
The Bohart Museum, which is celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, houses a global collection of nearly eight million insect specimens, plus a live “petting zoo” comprised of Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks and tarantulas. The Bohart Museum also inclues a year-around gift shop stocked with insect-themed t-shirts, sweatshirts, posters, books, jewelry and insect-collecting equipment.
Temporarily closed due to COVID-19 pandemic precautions, the Bohart is located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building on Crocker Lane.