Month: December 2019

Mia Lehrer, ‘landscape urbanist’

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Mia Lehrer (Courtesy Arid Lands Institute)

A fascinating story from Curbed Los Angeles, about Mia Lehrer, a landscape architect who considers herself a “landscape urbanist,” and co-drafted the 2007 Los Angeles River Revitalization Plan. Thanks to John Rowen for spotting this piece:



“I’m getting a little impatient because it’s so clear that you can’t go back 100 years,” she says. “I think that the term that gets more people centered for a moment is ‘urban ecology.’ There is no such thing as ‘full restoration.’ If you were to do a restoration project and it happens to be in an area that’s 20 degrees hotter and the water in that particular area is reclaimed water with a lot of salt, what do you do? You work with ecologists and biologists to sort of figure out what are the critical factors. You try to be very supportive of the ecological factors and also the habitat, but to also take it to another level.”


Help restore Southern California Steelhead habitat


Sespe Fly Fishers was awarded a $1,500 grant from Fly Fishers International. The multiple-page grant request was submitted by SFF Conservation Chair Randy Nelson who worked on the application for several days.

The funds were awarded to help Sespe Fly Fishers, in partnership with the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy, to restore the habitat of the endangered Southern California Steelhead along several tributary streams of the Ventura River.

Current restoration projects focus on re-vegetation of the active channels and floodplains and removal of invasive plant species. This is an ongoing project that was originated by the club to honor Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard’s dedication to conservation everywhere.

Recent rains have created ideal conditions for planting. Randy Nelson has contacted Jill Lashly at the Ojai Valley Land Conservancy and she has confirmed two volunteer planting dates with OVLC field staff, Destinee and Caitlyn.

The two dates scheduled for planting are 9 a.m. to noon on:
– Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019
– Friday, Jan. 10, 2020

NEED: Ten volunteers for each planting event. We will plant a total of 20 five-gallon live oaks and 134 one-gallon native shrubs.

MEETING LOCATION | Google maps link
370 Baldwin Rd, Ojai, CA 93023, (the old Honor Farm) Bldg A4

Please RSVP to Randy Nelson at by Decc18 to add your name to our volunteer list. This will allow OVLC to ask their members for a few more volunteers to help out, if needed.

Message from Randy Nelson:
“I’m really hoping for a good turn-out on these planting days, as our project fell behind during the recent 6 years of drought. Now that we can get back to work, I ask club members to step up to the plate! This restoration is vital to bringing back viable rivers that can sustain fish in the future! And it’s only 3 hours—think of it as a nice break from the holiday rush and your personal gift to our planet.”

OVLC will provide tools. Volunteers should bring their own work gloves, water, snacks, and sun protection.

Volunteer by Dec. 18 by emailing Randy Nelson,

Council for Watershed Health receives $1.4 million for LA River fish passage study

SteelheadAt its recent quarterly meeting, the Wildlife Conservation Board  approved approximately $28.7 million in grants to help restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat throughout California, including one for the Los Angeles River, according to its website.

A $1.4 million grant to the Council for Watershed Health for a cooperative project with the city of Los Angeles, the Southern California Coastal Water Research Project, the Friends of the Los Angeles River and the Arroyo Seco Foundation for a planning project to provide designs, permits and environmental review for addressing impaired mobility for southern steelhead trout and other native fish along more than four miles of the Los Angeles River in downtown Los Angeles.

See you on the river, Jim Burns