CREEC Greenhouse Youth Group report September 2017

September, 2017, just flew by at CREEC Greenhouse. We have continued to water the restoration plants. Some have not survived the transplant and will be replaced, others are very happy in their new spot under the bridge. With the rain, we will get started. CREEC has lots of Native plants to bring back our butterflies.
CREEC planted a mulberry tree a few years back across the road by a fence. Our Youth Group planted Sea Lavenders and California bee plants and some other future beautiful surprises under and around the tree. October will bring  a few more! The butterflies and humming birds will love it!
Ms Iris Wesselmann, Math/Science teacher at Carquinez Middle School, Friend of CREEC, Super Teacher who bribes us with marshmallows! visited CREEC with her classes(24 and 28 students) The 24 group class potted up seedlings of basil and salvia, 5 flats of each, !60 plants in all. They understand the life of a plant, root structure, stem, and leaves.They really liked mixing the soil in the wheelbarrow! The 28 group of students potted 1 gallon pots of ash and oak trees to 5 gallon pots so they could grow bigger. Almost everyone repotted a tree or 2. They loaded the labeled transplanted beauties and put them in a shaded spot with water. Both groups were excited and enthusiastic. CREEC, the treasure under the bridge, is being found out! due to the efforts of this wonderful woman! Several of her students have completed paperwork and are finishing their community service to be a part of CREEC’s Youth Group.

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CREEC Greenhouse Youth Group report August 2017

In month of August the CREEC Youth Group has been very productive.
We’ve removed the hay bale garden from in front of the greenhouse, transplanting the Salvias of many kinds and chamomile plants to pots. Then we staged and filled up tires with soil and planted a beautiful garden in the same spot. Dr. Dean Kelch  picked the plants and designed the garden, filling the tires and planting some of the many plants with us. We mulched and watered and the project is splendidly beautiful’ with butterflies and bees and humming birds visiting. Everyone should come and see!
We’ve also staged a “Plant Sale” area for Saturdays’ 10-1 advertised Plant Sale at CREEC. Although almost all of the plants at CREEC are for sale, we’ve put a large collection of Natives, flowers, vegetables, herbs, and trees all together for browsing. We have sweet potatoes in 1 gallon pots. CREEC has a great variety of beautiful plants, something for everyone.

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CREEC News: CREEC-David Hicks Memorial Scholarship Fund

We are proud to announce the formation of the CREEC-David Hicks Memorial Scholarship Fund.

A principle amount has been invested with a target to generate $1,200 to $1,500 per year and split equally between 2 deserving youngsters that have been involved with CREEC. The 2 scholarship winners will split the funds available at the end of every school year for their designated and declared, continued education plan, beginning with Class of 2018.
The process: each spring, CREEC kids that are moving past high school and planning any sort of continued education, will submit an essay to the CREEC Board of Directors. The Board of Directors will then review and pass along all qualified applicant’s essays to the surviving family of original co-founder and original Board of Director, David Hicks.

Dave passed away in early October, 2016. He was the guts of CREEC for over 20 years. Dave found it very rewarding to “get dirty” with the kids and watch their progress in life while working with CREEC, over the years. Many did not know that Dave placed a huge value on education, achieving a PHD himself. What better way to remember David Hicks than to invest funds from his CREEC efforts that will, in turn, allow continued education for CREEC youth?

I hope this might motivate some kids to “get involved”. Thank you Dave Hicks for your years of dedication!

CREEC Greenhouse Youth Group report, July, 2017

by Kay Smith

CREEC Youth Group has taken on many tasks this month. We have mulched all of the restoration plants and water them 3 times a week. We’ve begun potting up the oak acorns planted this Spring into 4 inch tree pots. Last year’s acorns are moving into 5 gallon pots. we’ve removed part of the hay bale garden and replaced and planted 1 side of our new tire planter garden. There are still 2 very large salvias in the hay bales to move before completing the rest of the tire planters.

We have new students completing their community service, learning the weeds, and the way to propagate plants. Most are happy and enthusiastic to be a part of CREEC.

The following students participated in CREEC in July:
Tony Neely, Jr.
Davonte Williams
Dmien Shyne
JaiLynne Howard
Nakylah Arnold
Rosa Stevens
Jazaria Foster
Marlaysia Neely
Daysha Williams
Emyah Moore
Miylekah Olyjini
Kalia Griffith
Gabrial Botta

Richard Moody did some tree removal and planting, mowing, weedwacking, and tool repair.

CREEC Greenhouse Youth Group report, June 2017

by Kay Smith

Our youth group came and planted lots of plants and trees on June 3rd in the restoration planting. We have been watering and mulching those plants as well as the second planting on June 17. Some of the trees have lost green in their leaves, others are happy to be planted. Like people, some take change better than others. Most of the plants in both plantings are showing signs of new growth and recovery from transplant shock. I am happy to report that all are mulched and marked so that we can water.

After the planting on June 3, we mulched and watered. Then school got out soon after that and the students were too busy to come to work. We only worked 7 days in June, mostly watering, mulching, and staking trees. We made some clones and basil seedlings and weeded a little.

Hopefully in July the youth group gets back on track. Summer work hours are Mondays and Thursdays from 7:30 am to 11:30 and Saturdays from 10-2.

CREEC has a lot of tomato plants free to good homes! (just make a donation to CREEC to keep up the good work!)

The following students participated at CREEC in June:
Tony Neely, Jr.
Nakylah Arnold
Jazarya Foster
David Martinez, Jr.
Zomaria Steely
Terrance Ramsey, Jr.
Gabriel Botta
Geovani Ramirez
Damien Shyne

Richard Moody worked at repairing fences, wagons, wheelbarrows and water leaks and weed whacking.

Thank-you for allowing CREEC to continue being such a big part of our week.

CREEC Greenhouse Report May, 2017

CREEC Youth Group was very productive this month; we worked a total of 13 days. Most of our time is spent weeding. There are always weeds to go after in potted plants, demonstration gardens, fence lines, or pathways. Next time grabber is the seedlings of the moment. Everything from grass to trees sprouts this time of year. Along with the toyon and milkweeds and oaks of many kinds, CREEC also has tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, okra, Egyptian walking onions, pumpkins and a wide range of herb plants for the garden. My hope is that people stop at CREEC first to see if their garden’s needs might be met and see also our beautiful Native and drought tolerant plants.
May also brought a lot of clean-up and reorganizing. We succeeded in filling the recycle, non-native green waste, and trash cans every week. We cleaned out sheds and reorganized some pot storage areas. There is still a lot to work on, but we think we’ve made a difference.



Planting natives next to the greenhouse near the “Nantucket”

The most important project that CREEC Youth worked on was picking out the plants and trees for our Restoration Project on the property located just before the CREEC Greenhouse property owned by C&H Sugar! We pulled, weeded, and staged about 200 trees and plants for the project. All of us are VERY excited that our plants are out of pots and into their own soil, to grow and be beautiful for all to see on Dowrellio Drive in Crockett! We will be mulching the newly planted area as soon as possible as they were planted on June 3.

The class from Carquinez Middle School that visited in April from Ms Wesselman’s math-science class, came again. Although only 5 students chose to return, they were very motivated and happy to get busy and pot up some valley oak seedlings. Then they spent some time weeding, racing to see who could fill up a 5 gallon pot first of 5 specific non-native invasive weeds. Then we all looked at the okra and marigold seedlings that they potted up in April, excited that they were plants ready for the garden. After they went to see the fish pond and went back to school. I hope they had as much fun as I did!
The following students participated at CREEC in May:Tony Neely, Jr.
Nakylah Arnold
Darrea Dorsey
Rosa Stevens
Devonte Williams
Geovani Ramirez
Tarrance Ramsey, Jr.
Lucius Libby

Richard Moody provided services in tool repair and maintenance.
Thank-you for allowing CREEC to be such a big part of our world! We are most excited to be a part of the new restoration!

By Kay Smith

What is CREEC?

The Carquinez Regional Environmental Education Center (CREEC) is a state and federally recognized, tax-exempt, 501(c)(3), public interest charity incorporated in 1995.  The role of this nonprofit organization is to effect wildlife habitat and enhancement, maintenance and restoration projects in the communities and open lands surrounding the Carquinez Strait – Californias most significant wildlife migratory corridor.  The sole goal of CREEC is the betterment of the areas natural resources through cooperative, constructive and mutually beneficial partnerships with the industries, families and agencies who live and work along the Strait.

The CREEC Youth Program is dedicated to environmental improvement in the Carquinez Strait region.  Students participate in habitat restoration, native and butterfly plant propagation, and butterfly rearing and release.  Participants earn a stipend for their participation, after completing 10 volunteer hours.  The program started in 1998 and initially included five students for a 10-week summer project.  It has expanded to a year-round opportunity for youth to earn while they learn by improving the surrounding community and open space.  Tasks are designed to create a hands-on learning experience in environmental restoration, basic horticulture, environmental science, non-profit management, and basic work skills.