Curator of the Ruth Bancroft Garden
Brian Kemble, curator of the Ruth Bancroft Garden, will tell us about this famous garden in Walnut Creek California. Dry-gardening pioneer Ruth Bancroft grew a private landscape so remarkable, it spurred the founding of the Garden Conservancy. Since then, Bancroft’s masterpiece has become one of America’s most acclaimed public gardens. What makes this waterwise haven so noteworthy—and so relevant for today’s home gardener? At its heart, the Ruth Bancroft Garden is a testament to fearless planting. A lover of succulents, Ruth Bancroft is a curious, experimental plant collector. It is this drive that shaped the garden into a wondrous model of xeriscaping. Succulents, wildflowers, roses, cacti, and trees come together in a collage of colors, textures, and shapes. As low-water realities dominate an increasing number of gardens, Bancroft’s example shows us how dry can be not only bold, but breathtaking.
Before Brian's talk, Johanna Silver, Garden Editor at Sunset, will tell us about the latest and greatest of Sunset's Test Garden. After 70 years in the same Menlo Park campus, Sunset Magazine relocated to Oakland, with a brand new garden—4 times the size of our old one—in Sonoma. Learn how we divided the space into five distinct garden rooms, including some of the most exciting new plants on the market.
Brian Kemble has been involved with The Ruth Bancroft Garden since 1980. He is highly regarded in the horticultural world and lectures in this country and in South Africa on the agave family, aloes, bromeliads, the history of The Ruth Bancroft Garden and other horticultural topics. Kemble has a B.A. in Philosophy from Antioch College. His work has been in the area of horticulture since 1976, including garden design and installation, tree trimming and garden maintenance. Brian's work for The Garden has included hybridizing of aloes, agaves, and some South American cacti. Brian has traveled extensively in Mexico and South Africa, studying and photographing plants in their native habitats.
Johanna Silver is a San Francisco–based writer, editor, and garden designer. She is the garden editor at Sunset, where she also manages the editorial test garden. Johanna is a regular contributor to Sunset magazines, books, and videos. Her writing earned her a James Beard Award in 2009 for her contributions to the One-Block Diet blog and an ASME award for General Excellence in 2014. Her website is johannasilver.com.
Before and after the meeting Johanna will be selling and signing her book about the Ruth Bancroft Garden, The Bold Dry Garden.
The presentation starts at 6:45
Parking free for everyone