Free Water Wise Class: Composting & Urban Soils Workshop, October 18

FREE WATER WISE CLASS:  Composting & Urban Soils Workshop
Saturday October 18 at 10:00 am to 11:30 am
Cornucopia Community Garden in Ventura
Find out how to create a healthy backyard mulch and compost and worm casting from your food and yard waste. Healthy soils conserve water, reduce need for pesticides, and help with retaining stormwater.

RSVP for the FREE WATER WISE CLASSComposting & Urban Soils Workshop, Saturday, October 18. RSVP via Eventbrite, CLICK HERE.

FREE Water Wise Class – Compost & Urban Soils, April 12, 10am-Noon



FREE Water Wise Class 

Compost & Urban Soils

Saturday, April 12, 2014


Cornucopia Gardens in Ventura (at Bobolink Lane & Telephone Road)



Expand your knowledge about water holding capacity and biology of the soil.  How to create healthy compost, compost teas and using natural amendments that improve the vitatlity of your soil, which enhances the condition of your landscape.  Ben Faber from UC Extension and Paul Vaksvic from City of Ventura will lead this workshop, which will be hosted at Cornucopia Gardens.  10:00 am to Noon.

Ventura Water Calls for 10 Percent Voluntary Water Use Reductions

QQnObuvIt3877mI6pBEFy1yopwDapNx3rYZB9KfrAQfBw4sZxQySc78MzKpEKqXV9Mcj22seqZ2wpKDAaHZmonMbZEqPRwrhDvuYztF2TrEj2lg9AJsKjaF-BaDGM61Vrls=s0-d-e1-ftVentura Water’s call for a voluntary water use reduction of 10% from our customers was supported unanimously last night by the City Council with a 6-0 vote.

“Ventura River water levels are very low and Lake Casitas, another of our primary water sources, is at 60 percent capacity,” said Ventura Mayor Cheryl Heitmann in last week’s press release. “It is a sensible step to reduce water use now by raising awareness of the need to conserve water. Our community met this challenge during the 1990s drought and we expect Ventura to once again be an outstanding partner in preserving our water supplies.”

The City’s third water supply is groundwater. A number of wells are currently undergoing urgent maintenance, which is limiting management options. One replacement well is in construction but is not expected to be operational until the summer.

We will be watching our water supplies over the coming months and are planning to bring an action plan to the City Council this summer if further restrictions are necessary. Officials from the Casitas Municipal Water District have alerted the City that if the water level in Lake Casitas drops to 50 percent, then the water district will issue water allocations. Without rain, this may occur as soon as August or September.

“In an allocation situation, we expect that the City Council would declare a water shortage emergency and enact more stringent conservation measures,” said Epstein. “Of course, anything that our customers can do to reduce their water use now will help Ventura’s supplies in the long run.”

Visit to learn more. Watch the recent LA Ch.7 ABC news video and LA Ch.4 NBC news video about Ventura’s water use reduction request.


From Ventura Water Pipeline, Vol. 4, No 1, February 2014

Holiday WATER Saving Ideas


During the holidays, family and friends gather for celebrations and that translates into more cooking and entertaining, more laundry,  more dishes, and using more water!     Here are some helpful tips from WaterSense and the Environmental Protection Agency that will help you ENJOY the season and SAVE WATER!


In the kitchen

Put it a plug in it. It’s a good rule of thumb to plug the drain when washing dishes in the sink or use a plastic wash basin filled with soapy water. This will significantly reduce the amount of water you waste by letting the tap run while you’re scrubbing holiday dishes.

Load it up! Don’t just fill up your guests this season—fill up your dishwasher. According to ENERGY STAR, dishwashers built before 1994 can use as much as 10 gallons of water per cycle. Ensuring your dishwasher is fully loaded each time you run it decreases the number of loads you’re doing and water you’re wasting.

Scrape the scraps. When plates return to the kitchen with food scraps on them, be water-efficient by scraping or wiping them off rather than rinsing every particle away with water.

Pour a pitcher full of savings. Instead of letting the faucet run until the water is cool, save water by filling a pitcher with water and storing it in the fridge. An ice-cold pitcher of water makes a great addition to your holiday table.

Let the fridge do the work. Instead of running hot water over frozen foods, thaw them out in the fridge overnight. Not only will you cut your water use, but you’ll also save the energy required to heat the water.

Give your garbage disposal a holiday. Most garbage disposal systems use water to break down and dispose of wastes, which can impact your household’s water use. This season, consider adding food wastes to a compost pile instead of tossing them down the garbage disposal.

To learn more water-saving tips to use this holiday season and how to save water all year, visit the WaterSense Be the Change page.


Photos from “Urban Gold” Water Wise Class, November 9, 2013


On Saturday, November 9, 2013, 10am-11:30am, Ben Faber, Farm Advisor, UCCE Ventura Co., spoke about how to improve the biology of your soil to create a thriving garden and more at the FREE “Urban Gold” Water Wise Class held at the City of Ventura’s Sanjon Maintenance Yard.

The next FREE Water Wise Class Series starts in March 2014.  Stay tuned to, and SustainableVentura.TV for more information!

Water Saving Ideas for the upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday

thanksgiv-dayThis year the Thanksgiving holiday falls on November 28.  During the season, we celebrate and give thanks for our family, friends, community, and the wonderful harvest bounty.

While we’re enjoying the season, and all it’s wonderful entertaining, please remember these water saving tips:

•Don’t let the water flow when washing the dishes.  If you have a two sided sink, fill one side with soapy water (or if you don’t have a two sided sink use a plastic wash basin) to rinse and/or wash dishes.  This will significantly reduce the amount of water you use.

•According to Energy Star, dishwashers that date to 1994 and earlier can use as much as 10 gallons of water per cycle.

•Always make sure you run your dishwashers ONLY when FULL.

•When you drink tap — don’t let the water run cold.  Fill a pitcher with water and then place in the refrigerator to cool.

•Don’t run hot water over frozen foods in the sink to defrost them.  Either use a microwave and/or defrost them in the refrigerator overnight.

•Put all your food scraps into a compost pile vs. putting them down the garbage disposal.

•When doing laundry, wash your clothes in COLD WATER using a cold-water detergent whenever you can. (Switching your temperature from hot to cold can cut a load’s energy use in half).

•ONLY do laundry when you have a FULL load.

Find other water saving tips at:

SAVE WATER and $$$ in your landscape by hiring WaterSense® Certified Irrigation Professionals


WaterSense Savings

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) WaterSense® program labels professional certification programs that advance water–efficient irrigation techniques and practices. If homeowners with irrigation systems hired irrigation professionals certified through a WaterSense labeled program to perform regular maintenance, each household could reduce irrigation water by 15 percent, or nearly 9,000 gallons annually.




Also contact:  Jill Sarick at or (805) 652-4501 for more information.

The Worldwide “Thirst” For Clean Drinking Water


“The last 100 years has been the golden age of water in the developed world:  water that has been safe, unlimited and essentially FREE,” Charles Fishman, author of The Big Thirst tells NPR/Fresh Air’s Terry Gross. “But that era is over,” Fishman continues.  “We will not, going forward, have water that has all three of those qualities at the same time:  unlimited, unthinkingly inexpensive and safe.”   LISTEN TO THE NPR INTERVIEW: