Local hikes organized for Jan. 1
California State Parks is partnering with America's State Parks First Day Hikes, a movement to encourage outdoor activities.
The following hikes will be open to the public Jan. 1: Wilder Ranch State Park, 1401 Coast Road, Santa Cruz, 9 a.m, to 1 p.m.; Natural Bridges State Beach, Swanton Boulevard and West Cliff Drive, 2 p.m.; Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park, 101 N. Big Trees Park Road, 11 a.m., noon and 1 p.m.; and Big Basin Redwoods State Park, 2160 Big Basin Way, Boulder Creek, 1 p.m.
Hikes may be canceled if raining. For details, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 831-426-0505.
UCSC Farm offers fruit tree workshop
The Friends of the UC Santa Cruz Farm and Garden will host "Fruit Trees 101: Basic Fruit-Tree Care" 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 5, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Matthew Sutton, owner of backyard orchard business Orchard Keepers, will teach how to choose a quality tree, prepare the planting hole, address fertility needs and cover the seasonal highlights of fruit tree care.
The workshop costs $20 for members of the Friends of the UCSC Farm and Garden, $30 for the general public and $5 for UCSC students (with student ID) payable the day of the class (check or cash only). Online registration is also available at
The UCSC Farm is located 1/4 mile up the gravel road above the Blacksmith Shop; free public parking is available in the parking lot at the corner of Coolidge Drive and Ranch View Road, just inside the main entrance to the UCSC campus.
Arboretum volunteer classes set for January
The UC Santa Cruz Arboretum will hold its volunteer orientation and training classes starting 9:30 a.m. to noon Jan. 8 and the next five consecutive Tuesdays.
The classes provide an overview of the programs, projects, people and history of the Arboretum, as well as an introduction to botany, horticulture, conservation and propagation. Garden tours and viewing behind-the-scenes operations are part of every class.
The classes are free in exchange for volunteer commitment or $75 for course and materials.
The UCSC Arboretum entrance is near Western Drive on Empire Grade Road in the Horticulture Building. For more information, visit the Arboretum website at http://arboretum.ucsc.edu.
Rare fruit explored at Scion Exchange
The Monterey Chapter of the California Rare Fruit Growers is hosting its annual Scion Exchange noon to 3 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 13, at the Cabrillo College Horticultural Center, 6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos.
The event will feature scion wood from thousands of varieties of fruit including apple, pear, European plum, Asian plum, cherry, apricot, peach and nectarine.
There will be grafting demonstrations, as well as rootstock available for sale, expert fruit growers answering questions and custom grafting will be available.
Entry fee is $5, plus the opportunity to join CRFG for $41 per year, $30 per year digital membership.
For details, call Ellen Baker at 831-662-2216.
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