Members’ meetings

East Bay CNPS Members’ Meetings are great for:
Learning about native plants (and wildlife) and their habitats
Virtually visiting beautiful and interesting places
Being inspired by conservation challenges and success stories
Meeting nice people who share your interests

Our meetings are always free and open to everyone, members and  non-members alike. We meet at 7:30 pm on the fourth Wednesday evening of the month in January-May and September-November, with a slight adjustment in the schedule to avoid Thanksgiving week. Most of our meetings take place at the Orinda Library, which is centrally located in our big, two-county chapter area.

We welcome your ideas for topics or speakers (some of our best programs have come from members’ suggestions), so please feel free to contact Programs chair Sue Rosenthal with your ideas ( or 510-496-6016).


Cutting Back: Garden Memoir Reading and Pruning
Speaker: Leslie Buck
Wednesday, February 28, 7:30 pm
Location: Garden Room, Orinda Public Library (directions below)

Join us for a reading from Leslie Buck’s new garden memoir, Cutting Back: My Apprenticeship in the Gardens of Kyoto, along with a pruning demonstration for all levels of experience.

Leslie Buck. Photo by Maya Blum

Leslie’s adventures in the gardens of Kyoto, recounted in her New York Times-reviewed book, Cutting Back, took her into some of the most beautiful and natural looking (not sheared!) native plant gardens she’d ever seen. She has applied what she learned in Kyoto to her work with California native plants, with beautiful results. Leslie will share information about pruning in general and teach a few basic cuts for creating natural-looking native gardens. To round out the evening, she’ll read excerpts from her delightful garden memoir. Copies of Leslie’s book will be available for purchase at the meeting (cash or check).

Leslie Buck has been a natural garden designer and aesthetic pruner in the San Francisco Bay Area for over two decades. During that time, she has lectured regularly and led many workshops. She holds a fine arts degree from the University of California, Berkeley, attended the School of Fine Arts in Bordeaux, France, and studied horticulture at Merritt College, where she met her mentor Dennis Makishima, a world-renowned pruning instructor and bonsai artist.

Leslie has worked, taught, and volunteered in hundreds of private landscapes as well as dozens of public gardens. In 2000, Leslie studied in Kyoto with Uetoh Zoen, one of the oldest and most highly acclaimed landscape companies in Japan.

East Bay CNPS membership meetings are free of charge and open to everyone. This month’s meeting takes place in the Garden Room of the Orinda Public Library at 26 Orinda Way (in Orinda Village). The Garden Room is on the second floor of the building, accessible by stairs or an elevator. The Garden Room opens at 7 pm; the meeting begins at 7:30 pm. Email or call 510-496-6016 if you have questions.

Directions to Orinda Public Library at 26 Orinda Way

DRIVING: From the west, take Hwy 24 to the Orinda/Moraga exit. At the end of the off ramp, turn left on Camino Pablo (toward Orinda Village), right on Santa Maria Way (the signal after the BART station and freeway entrance), and left on Orinda Way.

From the east, take Hwy 24 to the Orinda exit. Follow the ramp to Orinda Village. Turn right on Santa Maria way (the first signal) and left on Orinda Way.
Once on Orinda Way, go 1 short block to the parking lot on the southeast side of the two-story building on your right. There is additional free parking beneath the building as well as on the street.

VIA BART (4 blocks): Exit the Orinda station, turn right and cross a pedestrian bridge, then cross a second pedestrian bridge on the left. Go 1 short block on the sidewalk to the third pedestrian bridge. Go 2 blocks on Orinda Way to the Orinda Library.