Letters to the Editor

San Juan Fair treasure hunt was a hot event

Thanks go to the following local businesses for supporting the “Go Native” plant treasure hunt at the San Juan County Fair: Back to Nature Design, Friday Harbor Hardware & Marine, Island Gardens, and Orcas Ace Hardware.

Congratulations go to daily winners TJ Kinnaman, who won $50 worth of Black Gold potting soil; Susan Mahoney, who won $120 worth of native plant consultation; Phil Green, who won $30 worth of Oregon grape; and Mindy Kayl, who won $50 worth of bark, mulch or other amendments!

Treasure hunters loved the contest because they learned the characteristics of seven local plant species and got to visit the seven displays that incorporated at least one of the native plants: San Juan County Marine Resources Committee (sponsor), San Juan Nature Institute (coordinator), San Juan County Agricultural Resources Committee, WSU Extension Master Gardeners, San Juan County Noxious Weed Board, San Juan Horticultural Society, and Site Elements (plant donor).

Those who competed in the treasure hunt got to keep the very useful booklet, “Garden Wise: Non-invasive Plants for your Garden,” provided by the Noxious Weed Board, which they used to identify the native plants.

Several local landscapers urge us to “use native plants as the backbone of your gardens” because they don’t need as much water, provide habitat for native birds, insects, and animals, and often stabilize the soil against erosion.

See you at the fair next year!
Susan Key
Executive director
San Juan Nature Institute

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