Tom Butt
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  Last Call! Online Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour is this week-end + more
April 15, 2022

Dear Friend of the Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour and Green Home Features Showcase,

The free, online Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour takes place this week-end! If you haven’t registered for the Saturday and Sunday, April 16 and 17 event, now is the time. One registration covers you for the online and the in-person Tour (which takes place April 30 and May 1.)

Already registered?  We have you.  Please read, and then we’d be grateful if you would forward this e-mail.

Can’t remember if you registered?  Search for a bounce-back registration confirmation from

Can’t find your registration confirmation?  Check your spam box.

Still can’t find it?  Just register again. The bounce back registration confirmation e-mail goes out immediately after a registration is received, so if you cannot find a registration confirmation for the 2022 Tour, then register again at: That way you’ll know you have registered, and you can start looking for the bounce back message right away. (We will not be responding to requests asking if someone has registered – if you’re not sure, just register again.)

If the bounce back e-mail is not in either your “in” or your spam box, then your internet service provider is blocking my e-mails, and you will need to register with another e-mail address.   Please note that there is nothing more we can do to help you if your internet service provider is blocking Tour e-mails.

Volunteered but haven’t heard back? You will, around April 20.

Wish you had made a donation, but did not? 
 You can Venmo @BringingBacktheNatives, or pay with PayPal or your credit card here, or, you can mail a check to:
Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour
1718 Hillcrest Road, San Pablo  CA  94806

Event Details
Online Tour: Saturday and Sunday, April 16 and 17 – Inspirational speaker Doug Tallamy will kick the event off with a talk about oaks, our own ecological powerhouses.  In addition, we’ll visit 9 native plant gardens, tour homes with home features and more, in this two-day long event

In-person Tour: Saturday and Sunday, April 30 and May 1 – The in-person Tour is back!  50 beautiful bird- and butterfly-friendly gardens will be open at various locations throughout Alameda and Contra Costa counties over the course of one glorious week-end in our first two-day in-person tour ever! Bayside gardens will be open on Saturday, April 30, and Inland gardens will be open on Sunday, May 1. Visit as many as you like on this self-drive, self-guided tour. Garden addresses and a link to your tickets will be e-mailed to registrants 10 days before the event.

Green Home Features  New this year! In addition to the native plant gardens, homes with green home features will be showcased. Between the online and in-person events you can see videos of, or visit, a dozen private homes with solar panels and back-up batteries, heat pumps for heating and cooling your house or heating water, induction ranges, Smart Panels and more.
To find the green homes on the in-person tour look for this text on the listing: • Green Home Features! (Although my husband’s and my home is not on the tour, I’m including a link to my own green home remodel, in case it’s helpful to folks considering moving ahead on this front.)

Native Plant Extravaganza
  Shop on Saturday, April 23 from 10:00-4:00 and purchase native plants from the knowledgeable and helpful staff at East Bay Wilds in Oakland and the Watershed Nursery in Richmond, or order on-line with Green Thumb Works on either Saturday or Sunday, April 23 or 24, and a percentage of your purchase will go to support the Tour.

Book sale fundraiser
 – Orinda Books has again made the Tour a great offer!  Purchase any of the following from Orinda Books, and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Tour. You will also be supporting Orinda Books, a local small business. (In this case, the small business is owned by long-time garden tour host Pat Rudebusch, whose lovely native plant garden in Orinda you may have visited in the past.) 

The benefit books are Doug Tallamy’s books, 
·      the NY Times best-seller “Nature's Best Hope
·      "Bringing Nature Home," or, 
·      Doug’s most recent book, "The Nature of Oaks"
or any of these California-specific gardening books:
·      "Designing California Native Plant Gardens" by Alrie Middlebrook and Glen Keator,
·      “Garden Allies” by Frederique Lavoipierre
·      “Native Plant Gardening for Birds, Bees, and Butterflies in Northern California” by George Oxford Miller, or
·      “California Native Gardening, A Month-by-Month Guide”, by Helen Popper
Call Orinda Books at (925) 254-7606, order on-line at, or shop in-person at 276 Village Sq., Orinda, CA.

Discounted Memberships in the California Native Plant Society 
As a special benefit, Tour registrants can take out an Individual Membership with CNPS for just $30—that’s 40% off the regular price!  Please note, you can only do this through and you must use code: BBNG2022.  (You enter this code at the end, so just be brave and carry on.) This offer is only for new members, and it ends June 15, 2022.

Please forward!
 We’d be grateful if you would forward this announcement about the Tour to friends, family members, neighbors, or colleagues, and/or post an announcement on your Facebook page, or on NextDoor or other social media sites you frequent. Sample text you can use in posts is at the bottom of this e-mail.

In-Person Garden Tour Volunteers
 are still needed April 30 and May 1 to spend a morning or afternoon greeting tour participants and answering questions about natives on the week-end of Saturday and Sunday, April 30 and May 1.  Complete the Volunteer section of the registration form if you can help out this year. Benefits to volunteers include invitations to Garden Soirees, in which tour gardens are open to hosts and volunteers; a pre-tour meeting with the owner and private tour of the garden you will be staffing; a guaranteed tour reservation for the balance of the Tour; a Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour t-shirt, and, perhaps best of all, heartfelt thanks for helping to educate the general public about the many pleasures and benefits of gardening with California native plants.  Prior to signing up to volunteer, browse the gardens to choose the garden you would like to be assigned to. Click here for more information on volunteering.

2023 Tour
 - Applications for the 2023 Tour are now being accepted. You can download the application form from the Tour’s website.  Now is the perfect time to offer your own garden for the 2023 Tour, as garden visits will be made in May and June.  (Please note that gardens must contain at least 70% or more native plants.)

 – Visit and "Like" us on Facebook.  This spring the Garden Tour's Facebook page has been featuring various gardens that will be open on the in-person tour.  (Just scroll down to find them.) 

 – Visit the Tour’s YouTube channel to see past videos, and subscribe to be notified when new videos are uploaded.

– Recently my husband, Mike, discovered Atmos.  Atmos’ motto is “Changing your bank can help fight climate change,” and their goal is to shift money away from activities that harm the planet and toward those that help preserve it.  Mike and I had never thought that banks make choices about how to spend the money we deposit—but they do.  We were pleased to learn that none of the funds deposited with Atmos go to activities that fund climate change, such fossil fuel investment, or factory farming. Instead, funds deposited with Atmos fund clean energy programs and other actions that combat climate change.  The 45 second video on their website is well worth watching. Mike and I love the idea that the funds in our bank account can be working for good, and we have opened an account; we hope you will, as well. For every account opened using this link, Atmos will make a donation to the Tour. (Funds deposited with Atmos are FDIC insured, and there are no fees.)
I hope you enjoy this year's Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour and Green Home Features Showcase!

Kathy Kramer
Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour Coordinator
(510) 236-9558
Visit the Garden Tour on Facebook

I hope you enjoy this article as much as I have:
The Chickadees Guide to Gardening: In Your Garden, Choose Plants That Help the Environment

Text to use for social media sites:

Eighteenth Annual Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour and 

Green Home Features Showcase

Registration for the free on-line Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour and Green Home Features Showcase is now open.  This year there will be four days of inspiration: two days on-line, and two days in-person.  This tour will also showcase residences with green home features. 

The online Tour will take place Sat. and Sun. April 16 and 17 from 10:00-3:00.  Best-selling author Doug Tallamy will kick off the event.

The award-winning in-person Bringing Back the Natives Garden Tour and Green Home Features Showcase will allow registrants to visit beautiful, water-conserving native plant gardens— 36 Bayside gardens on Saturday, April 30, and 15 Inland gardens on Sunday, May 1, from 10:00-5:00. All of the homes have native plant gardens; about ten will be sharing their green home features, such as solar panels and batteries, induction ranges and heat pumps, and more. 

For more information contact or call (510) 236-9558.