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February 29, 2012  (El Cajon) -- "The Bottom Line for Green Is Black" is the theme for the 4th annual Sustainable Urban Landscape Conference presented by the Cuyamaca College Horticulture Department. This conference is the premier Southern California event to learn successful business models leading the way to our landscape future.


This year's conference will focus on the ways sustainability acts as a new and profitable business model, changing the face of our region's urban environments.

The keynote speaker is John Picard, one of the leading thinkers and builders of sustainable societies. He has conceptualized and built hundreds of the smartest homes, workplaces and communities in America and his vision guides the future planning of dozens of Fortune 500 companies. Picard has led hundreds of influential leaders in business and government into a greener future, where sustainability is highly profitable.

Last year, more than 250 people attended the conference, geared toward landscape professionals, educators and others interested in keeping current with the latest in sustainable landscape practices. The conference, hosted by Cuyamaca College’s Ornamental Horticulture department, is being held from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the college’s Performing Arts Theatre, with a reception to follow at the Water Conservation Garden.

“This conference is just one of the many ways that Cuyamaca College is on the forefront of training for people interested in better using our natural resources,” said Cindy L. Miles, chancellor of the Grossmont-Cuyamaca Community College District. “We recognize that green jobs are good for the environment and the economy.”

Other speakers at the conference include:

  • Dennis Pittenger, environmental horticulturist at UC Riverside and a nationally-recognized expert in landscape water management

  • David Shaw, a farm advisor with the University of California Extension in San Diego. His work includes assessing the needs and presenting educational and research programs for landscape professionals.

  • Richard Restuccia, director of water management solutions at ValleyCrest Companies, Inc.

  • Tom Jesch, owner of Waterwise Botanicals, a wholesale/retail nursery that specializes in drought-tolerant and cutting-edge plant varieties.

The conference will also feature a discussion on the business of urban farming that will be moderated by author and educator Nan Sterman.  Panelists include Karen Contreras, the founder of Urban Plantations, a company dedicated to city-dwelling sanctuaries; Bill Tall, founder of City Farmers Nursery; and Crystal Montoya, a certified grower who produces food from her home for farmers markets.

Attend and stay informed, share information, and investigate resources. Early registration is just $90 and includes meals, parking, and a post-conference reception.
Register via secure online registration or register via fax at (619) 660-4408.


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