Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, November 19, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 13

Mountain Views-News Saturday, November 19, 2022 


[Nyerges is an educator and author, who has written “Urban Survival Guide,” “Foraging California,” 
“Extreme Simplicity,” and other books. You can learn more at] 

In recent weeks, you may noticed the activity on the empty lot on Sierra Madre 
Blvd., just east of Arnold’s Hardware. The yard is fenced, and inside are numerous 
tables full of local native plants. 

This is the current site of Hardy Californians, a Native Plant Nursery and Landscape 
Design Studio run by local residents Parker Davis and Portia Besocke. Within their Christmas-
tree style pop-up, they boast a wide selection of locally grown plants native to California which 
are uniquely adapted to our relatively low levels of precipitation(or rainfall) and extremely hot summers. 
Both of these naturalists have been growing, propagating, selling, and consulting about native 
plants for several years. Their current venture at 283 W. Sierra Madre Blvd. will run through 
December 13th, though they hope to re-open in January, given the positive reception they have 
received from local residents. 

Parker and Portia believe that our futures must include 
native plants which use less water, and are evolved to 
thrive in our region. With concerns over drought and climate 
change, native plants offer a viable alternative to the 
otherwise ecologically-sterile imported bushes and trees, 
and the outdated colonial lawn. 

“We specialize in locally grown native plants that are 
uniquely adapted to our climate, requiring little to no 
supplemental irrigation, while contributing the most ecological 
benefit in supporting our local birds, bees, and 

Visitors to the Audubon Society center at Deb’s Park in 
Highland Park might remember Parker Davis, who, for 
several years, led volunteers in restoration efforts there, 
and guided visitors on interpretive walks. Subsequently, 
both Parker and Portia developed the Hahamongna Native 
Plant Nursery in the Arroyo Seco on Pasadena’s west 

According to Parker, “Hardy Californians is one of the 
very few native plant nurseries which grows plants native 
to our community, and thrive in foothills of the San 
Gabriel Mountains with little to no maintenance or irrigation. 
” Parker pointed out that some of the beautiful 
natives currently available include the aromatic and 
ornamental “Wooly Blue Curls, and Encelia californica, 
a native sunflower. Other popular plants for sale include White Sage, Black Sage, Mugwort, and 
Yerba Santa, all of which are drought-tolerant, sustainable and boast great ecological and sociologi

cal benefits. 

 For example, many of our native 
plants are excellent medicinal and 
culinary herbs, and some provide 
food, just as they did with Native 
Americans. Some of the food 
plants include native species of 
grape, the Toyon tree with its beautiful 
orange-red fruits, and our local 

Hardy Californians is open for 
business from Tuesdays through 
Sundays, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. 
They also provide landscape design 
services for those residents ready 
to ditch their lawns for a habitat 
friendly garden that is uniquely 
Californian, and are currently offering 
free estimates to interested 


The popup business also offer a selection of terra cotta pots, wildflower seeds and related books 
available, as well as gift items, such as t-shirts, and their popular “LA Plants” Dad Hats! 

Hardy Californians will be in town until December 13th, so be sure and go by and pick up a gift for 
that special friend, family member or neighbor who has already joined the native plant revolution, 
or who maybe needs a bit of encouragement! 


On December 3, Hardy Californians is hosting a special workshop with Dr. James Adams, co-author 
of “Healing with Medicinal Plants or the West.” Dr. Adams will share details of how the Chumash 
used native plants for medicine, and he will teach some traditional methods to combat pain. Dr. 
James Adams will come from San Francisco to lead the medicinal plant workshop. Cost is $70. To 
sign up for the workshop, you can contact Parker Davis at 626) 674-4504, or email him at parker@ You can also sign up for the event at the Nursery at 238 W. Sierra Madre 

Parker Davis and Portia Besocke in front of 
the company van 

Parker Davis examines the native plants in the nursery.
tables full of local native plants. 


These two boys are from a 
litter of 7, born 9/5/22. There 
are now 3 boys and 2 girls 
(two others are already spoken 
for). All just as cute and 
playful as can be! Pumpkin, 
obviously, is an orange tabby, 
and Julius is shiny black & white. They are bonded brothers and must be adopted 
together. They’ll be ready for delivery next month, and will already be neutered, vaccinated, 
tested, chipped, and more, saving you quite a bit. Adopters will also receive 
a discount coupon from Pet Food Express. See more pictures on our website’s Very 
Young page, and also the adoption application, 

Pet of the Week 

November is Adopt-A-Senior-Pet Month, and thisamazing five-year-old “senior” is hoping to findher forever home today! Sugar is the sweetest namepossible, and it perfectly matches this friendlygirl’s loving personality. She is generous with heraffection- she leans right into you for affection andgives out lots and lots of kisses.

 Sugar recently was at an event with our mobile 
team and she was hands-down the star of the day.
She became the official greeter who would walkright over to everyone to introduce herself. She isalso as smart as she is sweet and happily showed offher repertoire of tricks; sit, down, crawl and shake!

If you’re looking for a wonderful dog who will doleout kisses like they’re candy, Sugar is the girl foryou!

 Sugar is eligible for our Seniors for Seniors 
program, so her adoption fee is waived for any 
adopter over the age of sixty.

 The adoption fee for dogs is $150. All dogadoptions include spay or neuter, microchip, andage-appropriate vaccines. 
New adopters will receive a complimentary health-and-wellness exam from VCA AnimalHospitals, as well as a goody bag filled with information about how to care for your pet.

View photos of adoptable pets and schedule an adoption appointment Adoptions are by appointment only, and new adoptionappointments are available every Sunday and Wednesday at 10:00 a.m.

 Pets may not be available for adoption and cannot be held for potential adopters by 
phone calls or email. 

I’ve always loved dogs who talk in TV shows and 
movies. I’ve also always loved jokes told by talking 
dogs. Which is why this joke makes me laugh 
out loud: A three-legged dog walks into a bar 

and sets his pistol on the table.
“I don’t want any trouble,” says the nervous bartender.
“I have no beef with you,” says the dog. “I’m looking for the man who shot my 

I recently watched the 1959 movie, “The Shaggy Dog,” and laughed out loud 
when Fred MacMurray realizes that his son has been transformed into a talking, 
shaggy dog. One of the first movies to feature a talking dog, it was a runaway 
Disney hit, and I think I know why. Any human whose home is blessed with a 
wonderful, silly dog would love for their pups to be able to talk. 

Even though some dogs may appear to be voicing human words, such as “I wuvvvv 
youuuuu,” Scientific American says that dogs cannot talk the way humans 
do — but scientists do make it clear that dogs can communicate with us. 

Thurber and I communicate very well with each other every day.
He is way smarter than I ever expected him to be and he understands the many 
words, tones and gestures that I use when I ask him to do something or retrieve 
something. He tells me when he wants to eat, play, help him get a ball that slid 
under a chair and many other things. 

Thurber uses his eyes, various whimpers, groans and tones to communicate what 
he wants me to know or do. 

When the matter is urgent — such as the need to go Number 1 or 2 — he knows 
a loud bark will get my immediate attention. 

Dogs are way smarter than many people are aware. The average dog can learn 
about 165 words, but some dogs can learn more than 200 and even beyond 1,000!
If Thurber could talk, I know he’d tell the silliest, corniest jokes, such as this one:
“What do you call a Labrador who does Magic?”
“A Labrakadabrador!” Or this one: 

A dog walks into a dentist’s office one evening and says, “I think I’m a moth.”
The dentist says, “I’m sorry, buddy, but I can’t help you. You need to see a 
“I am seeing a veterinarian,” says the dog.
“Then why did you come to my office?” said the dentist.
“Your light was on,” said the dog. 

The fact is, Thurber DOES “talk” in a series of funny videos featured on his 
blog, Watch him tell jokes at this link:

In any event, all of this talk about talking dogs reminds me of the fellow who sees 
a sign outside a house that reads: “Talking Dog for Sale.” 

The fellow walks up to a dog sitting on the front porch, and the dog says, “May I 
help you mister?”
“You really can talk!” says the man. “You’re amazing!”
“My life has been amazing,” says the dog. “My talking skills helped me communicate 
with human authorities and other dogs to save avalanche victims in the 
Alps, as well as earthquake and hurricane victims all over the world. Now semiretired, 
I spend my days telling jokes at the local children’s hospital.” 

The fellow, flabbergasted, asks the dog’s owner, “Why on Earth would you want 
to sell an incredible dog like this?”
“Because he’s a compulsive liar!” said the dog’s owner. “He’s never left the yard!” 

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