Photo by Richard Hayden         
April 2018   
Dear Donna
April showers bring ..... Spring Tour flowers! The gardens on tour are 'sprucing up' and getting ready for your visit. Have you purchased your ticket for admission to the five private gardens?
At Gamble, where admission is free, the staff and volunteers are preparing the garden for its close up. Once again, the ever-popular Left Bank Trio will be on the property for your listening pleasure. Read below to learn about more events at Gamble during the tour.
Have you ordered your box lunch, provided by our local Calafia Cafe? Enjoy al fresco dining on the Gamble lawn.
Spring Tour is our largest fundraising event of the year. It is also one of the many ways Gamble brings the greater community together for two days of garden ideas and inspiration.

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Special thanks to our Spring Tour Major Sponsor for the
past eight years
Photo by Nadine Priestley
April 27th and 28th
Happening at Gamble Garden
No Ticket Required to Enter Gamble
Silent Auction
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More than 80 items and opportunities await your bids at Gamble's Silent Auction, with twenty-five items available only at the Preview Party on Thursday evening, April 26. Here are just two of the fabulous items to bid on:
How about a Behind the Scenes Guided Tour of Chinatown, a fascinating insider's walk through a storied San Francisco neighborhood? Enjoy dim sum, visit architecturally stunning temples, hear ancient stories, and investigate back alleys. Does your garden need a Professional Pruning? The Gamble Horticulture Team's expert hands will prune and spruce up your home garden. 
Marketplace Vendors
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Our Marketplace Vendors will be open at Gamble during the Thursday evening Preview Party and Friday and Saturday from 10:00am - 4:00pm. Vendors will be located inside the house and on locations throughout the grounds.
A sample of our vendor products includes: Blown glass from Viscosity in Boulder Creek; Gold, silver, cashmere and silk from Ashley Ashoff of Paris; unique custom women's clothing from Tiburon's Jan Whittingham; and handmade purses from Dottie Bean of San Franciso.
Over the Garden Fence
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Over the Garden Fence is a curated sale of art, home and garden furnishings and collectables - all donated from estate remainders and community supporters. This year a trove of Asian, African and Latin American pieces joins our traditional display of art, fine china, silver and crystal. Mid-century furniture, books and accessories are also featured. Don't miss the hand-painted dishes from Portugal, Italy and Provence, and our always-popular blue and white collection of ceramics.
Plant Sale
Penstemon heterophyllus 'Margarita BOP'
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Curious about the name, 'Margrita BOP'?  The plant comes from Las Pilitas Nursery, where they say 'Penstemon 'Margarita BOP' was a volunteer seedling that came up sometime in the early 1980's. It is a hybrid between Penstemon heterophyllus and Penstemon laetus. Every year it would flower and be gorgeous, clear sky blue, fading to purple, at the bottom of our front porch. 'Margarita BOP' [Bottom of the Porch] has beautiful flowers and is loved by hummingbirds as are all penstemons.
This plant is one of the attractions in Gamble's new pollinator garden.
  'Mortgage Lifter' Tomato
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This remarkable tomato is one of 17 heritage varieties started from seed in our greenhouse for the Spring Tour Plant Sale. Legend has it that the large heirloom beefsteak tomato, ‘Mortgage Lifter’ was developed in the 1930’s by a gardener who planted the biggest varieties he knew and crossed one with pollen from the other three. He did this for 6 seasons and created a variety that produced large, tasty fruit. He sold the plants for $1 each and paid off his $6,000 mortgage in 6 years. Learn more about 'Mortgage Lifter' in this article from the PRI show, Living on Earth.
These plants and many other varieties will be for sale during Spring Tour
Photo of Joan's garden by Caitlin Atkinson         
Wednesday, May 23, 2:00pm - 4:00pm
Members and a guest are invited to tour the private garden of Gamble's incoming President, Joan Sanders. Join us for a tour of her one-acre garden in the historic Lindenwood section of Atherton, part of the original James C. Flood estate. In 1876, Mr. Flood began acquiring what would become 674 acres for his Linden Towers, a 42-room fairytale palace. This mansion was “…probably the most magnificent country home in America.” The grounds, lit by hundreds of gas lamps, were maintained by a landscape gardener with 120 assistants and embellished with statuary and fountains, some of which still remain in Lindenwood today
Joan's home was built in 1946 as a model home by Ernie van Aspergn. Jack Stafford designed the original landscape in 1976. After his death, subsequent designs were created by Peggy Hinman. This stunning, mature garden is a showcase for many plants that thrive in our area, including birch, redbuds, and roses at their peak in late May.
Little Garden Explorers
Wednesday May 9, 16, and 23, 3:00pm - 4:00pm
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Are you looking for a spring activity for a preschooler or kindergartener? Join one  - or all - of our three classes specially designed for ages 3 – 6 and their grown-ups. Each class starts with a garden song or story and then we dig in for a fun hands-on garden activity.
Every session offers a different learning activity. Each class will be unique and special!
Make a Tussie Mussie for Mother's Day
Saturday, May 12, 10:00am - 11:00am
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Send a message to your mother or loved one for Mother’s Day through the Language of Flowers. Create a tiny sweet bouquet of real flowers, herbs, and greens, wrapped with a doily and tied with a ribbon!
Intro to Photography for ages 7 - 12
Saturday, May 19, 10:00am - 11:30am
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Is your elementary or middle school child a budding photographer? Help cultivate their passion for the visual arts! In this class, students will learn composition techniques and practice their photography skills. Gamble Garden's stunning flowers and plants will be their subjects. At the end of the class, each participant will submit two photos to be exhibited on Gamble Garden’s website. Bring a camera - any type or model - or cell phone, plus a water bottle.
Gamble Staff member Sarah Callen        
April in the Garden
with Richard
Happy Spring everyone! No one is happier than this SoCal transplant to finally see the weather warm up, the verdant growth begin, and the bright blooms that come as a result.
Spring is traditionally a time for sowing seeds, taking advantage of the warming soil to nurture sprouts and watch them grow. At Gamble we’ve been busy nurturing the next generation of passionate gardeners and nature lovers by successfully conducting a variety of child and young adult programs.
In March, we welcomed 130 third graders and 120 kindergarteners from Laurel Elementary in Menlo Park to Gamble Garden. The educational programs we presented covered native bees and the plants they love, and community gardens and the wildlife that visits. We conducted our most successful Second Saturday Nature Hunt yet, with over 60 participants taking advantage of expeditions through the garden and hands-on activities that included potting up sunflower seeds and examining ‘owl pellets’ from our resident great horned owl.
Our Little Garden Explorers program provided a deep dive into the worm bin and a chance to learn about compost. We’ve implemented a new program for girl scouts earning their gardening badge, and we had a group of 8th graders from Kahn Lab School visit and learn first hand about community involvement by volunteering with our Roots and Shoots program to grow vegetables for the local food bank.

Upcoming Events
Registration is required for all classes and events
Redesigning Your Front Yard without a Lawn, Saturday April 7, 9:30 - 11:30am
Second Saturday, April 14th, 9am-noon.
Composting Basics, 9:30 - 11:30am, Free
Children's Nature Hunt, 11:00-11:45am, Free
Little Garden Explorers, Wednesday May 9, 16, and 23, 3:00 - 4:00pm
Spring Flowering Nests for Mother's Day, Friday May 11, 9:30am - 12:30pm
Second Saturday, May 12th, 9am-noon.
Make a Tussie Mussie, Saturday May 12, 10:00 - 11:00am, Free
Children's Nature Hunt, 11:00-11:45am, Free
Intro to Photography for ages 7-12, Saturday May 19, 10:00 - 11:30am
Member to Member Garden Tour, Wednesday May 23, 2:00 - 4:00pm, Free
All Luncheons in April, May and June are sold out.
Gamble Luncheons will begin again on September 12 and October 10th,
with Holiday Luncheons December 4th - 8th.
Members can register now for all luncheons.
ONLY members can reserve for the Holiday Luncheons, until November 1st.
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Address postal inquiries to:
Elizabeth F. Gamble Garden
1431 Waverley Street
Palo Alto, CA 94301-3640