A LOT OF landscaping is re-representing nature in your own vision," explains Chuck Poehlman. "You see things that are naturally occurring and try to represent it."
Mr. Poehlman will share his two decades of landscaping know-how this winter. On Feb. 24 and March 2, he will teach two mini-seminars to encourage thoughtful planning for residential design.
The seminars will be held at Outside Unlimited, 4195 St. Paul Road, Hampstead. Each costs $5 per person or $8 per couple and are held from 10 a.m. to noon.
Mr. Poehlman, landscape manager and director of sales and design for Outside Unlimited, has taught residential landscaping for 12 years for Howard County Community College Continuing Education, real estate companies, garden clubs and public schools.
On Feb. 24, he'll offer basic information on home landscaping, "from initial idea to how to maintain it," he said.
On March 2, he'll show the "fancy things that make landscaping an art form," he said, including "hardscaping," which refers to "walks, patios, walls, waterfalls, boulders and steps, elements that hold up through time."
Information: Outside Unlimited, 239-2153.
An unusual mascot has been chosen by Erica Guenther's fifth-grade class at Spring Garden Elementary. Her 30 students are helping to save the giant panda.
After reading about the endangered American condor, classroom study led to the discussion of a list of animals nearing extinction. "We decided to adopt an endangered animal," explained Ms. Guenther.
"We took a vote, which narrowed it down to the panda," Ms. Guenther said. "There are only 40 in the wild, 10 in captivity. But that's an inaccurate count, due to the mountains in China," which impede research, she said.
Helping pandas takes money. The class chose to have a bake sale during Family Learning Night at the school.
"The kids did all the planning, putting up signs, setting prices, selling the baked goods. They raised $280," said Ms. Guenther.
That's when Ms. Guenther called Lisa Stevens of the Washington National Zoo.
Ms. Stevens responded. The students' contribution will be applied to research for panda preservation in the wild.
Ms. Guenther hopes the class can organize a trip to see the pandas and Ms. Stevens in Washington.