CLCA/Central Coast

The Seascape

Newsletter of the CLCA
Central Coast Chapter

March 2019


2019 Calendar of Events


Supplier & New Members Night
March 19
, Tuesday

Please join us for an evening where industry vendors will come together to display their wares, discuss their products and services. Enjoy a free dinner compliments of the Central Coast Chapter. This is our biggest, local trade show format event of the year. Bring a friend who is interested in becoming a member! 

Details: 4:30-8:00 p.m. at the Seascape Golf Club, Clubhouse Drive in Aptos. To RSVP for the meeting use this link or contact Katia Velasquez:

Graywater Installer Certification
March 6-29
, Wednesdays and Fridays

Green Gardener Graywater Installer Certification Course, Wednesdays and Fridays, 1-3:30pm. Santa Clara Valley Water District Administration Building, 5750 Almaden Expressway, San Jose. More info and registration at

Legislation Day, Sacramento
April 3-4
, Wednesday-Thursday

Members of the Legislation community from CLCA will be visiting our state capital to inform representatives about the current laws affecting the C27 license. Attached are the bills up for a vote which will impact the green industry in California. Stay tuned for progress and photos from Legislation Day 2019. (This is not an open event, for members of the Legislation committee only.)

2-day event in Sacramento, CA. See attached PDF for for information.
Contact Andrew Tuckman, Legislative Director:

Irrigation/Efficiency Workshop
April 5
, Friday

Mark your calendar! Your local water agencies are sponsoring a workshop focusing on improving water use efficiency for non-turf landscape areas. Recent analysis shows that non-turf areas can be leading contributors to site water use inefficiency. Share your perspectives, gain knowledge, check out some new products and enjoy a free lunch. The City of Santa Cruz and Soquel Creek Water District will share rebate and water rate news, Rain Bird will be on hand for product demonstrations, as well as landscape and water industry professionals.

Sign up at:

Details: At the Cabrillo College Horticulture Center, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Free lunch will be provided!


President’s Message

by Justin White, Chapter President, K&D Landscaping Company

new central coast leadership

Justin White.jpg

“Would you drive your car with a flat tire?”

It’s a funny question because I think we all know the answer… No! However, I see many contractors operating their businesses with “flat tires;” I have been guilty of this as well. We get so focused on daily work and making sure our customers are happy, that we often forget to do routine maintenance and checkups on how the business is performing. When your car’s check engine light comes on you know it’s time for a service, but does your business have a check engine light?

Last month Phil, Tish, Regan and I flew down to Ontario for the 2019 CLCA Leadership Conference where we honed in on our leadership skills to become better business owners and CLCA volunteers. Side note; are you aware that our own Regan Barry is currently on the State Board as the incoming State President?! It’s very exciting to see our local, Past President stepping into the shoes of State President…way to go Regan! The Leadership Conference reminded me that in order to be a better volunteer and a better leader you must always be improving and working on yourself.  

I felt this was so relevant with the recent rain we’ve been receiving.  It is giving us the opportunity to inspect our businesses on a fundamental level; to have the “check engine light” serviced while our crews are off work and the job sites are shut down. As we are all very busy people, this may seem like a convenient time for a vacation, but it is also a gift to refocus our energy into different areas. Maybe you’re cleaning out that closet of files from 1996 or maybe you’re getting a jump on your taxes, but how many of us are walking across the street and viewing our businesses like an outside investor? Asking questions like: “Are they running at peak efficiency?” “Are their crews trained and certified in what they do?” “Is their pricing structure in line with today’s economy?” “Are the employees motivated and engaged?” “Is the company’s vision clearly and effectively communicated to every single employee?” Or even, “Do they have a vision?” “Are they profitable?” If you’re anything like me, you’re probably discovering there are many areas for improvement. What better time to start improving your company’s health than during this wet weather? It’s a chance to reset our focus for the year and take advantage of a booming economy.

If you feel yourself becoming a bit overwhelmed with the workload of business improvement, don’t worry because you’re not alone, and guess what…?! There is a place where contractors can go to tune up their businesses. From the entry level employee to high level training for owners and partners, and it’s called the CLCA! The CLCA has a wealth of resources and training opportunities, for instance, the local trade show, Supplier’s Night, coming up on March 19th at 5:30pm at Seascape Golf Club. Having your team attend this is a great chance to meet new suppliers and find out about their products. It can also be a great recourse for training and business development.  Contractors often forget that a supplier sees your business from a different angle than say, your customers, and thus can help provide different insight.

If you’re reading this month’s “President’s Message” then you already have a jump on your competition! Start today by diving into your company’s engine with a 100 point inspection to find out what areas needs your attention. I am always open to take calls or emails on this subject, so please don’t hesitate to drop me a line.

To our success,
Justin White
CEO, K&D Landscaping Inc.

Link to Partners Feature: Jeff Henninger of Delta Bluegrass

This month we feature Jeff Henninger in our “Partner’s Corner.” This article appears on the website and you can find it HERE (scroll down the page.)




Above: Left to right, Tish O’Reilly (Past Central Coast President), Mike Rodriguez (CLCA event speaker), Regan Barry (Immediate Past President Central Coast Chapter and new CLCA State President), Phil Dundas (Central Coast Secretary) and Justin White (Central Coast President), aka “talking heads.”


February 5, 2019 –
Convention Minute: Leadership conference

by Tish O’Reilly

There were many reasons to attend the CLCA Convention in November and the Leadership Conference in February. Let me take this moment to mention one. At our convention in November, speaker Jim Paluch’s speech started out with the word “just.” Just as in “merely” or “simply,” and went on to discuss the value that there is in how we describe ourselves and our profession.

What’s the difference between when your crew goes home to describes their day as just “digging holes and moving rock” to saying “I create gardens for people to live better and enjoy their homes and lives.” The answer, my fellow contractors, is professionalism.
CLCA—Participate in CLCA. Learn to grow your company. We are the Professionals!

Punxsutawney Phil’s cousin was seen at the event.

Punxsutawney Phil’s cousin was seen at the event.

Photos below, left top: Leanna Schroeder from Rubicon Landscaping. Right top: Our Own Regan Barry! Bottom left: Phil Dundas of The Landscape Company, and Southern California Sales Rep for Toro. Bottom right: Manual Morales of Monterey Bay Nursery, Inc.

Thank you to everyone who helped to make this event happen!


Special Announcements


Cabrillo College

Irrigation/Efficiency Workshop

Soquel Water and the City of Santa Cruz are partnering to provide a landscape contractor-oriented workshop that will cover challenges related to non-turf irrigation. We are talking about shrubs and trees here, as emerging data is showing that over irrigation can be more problematic in shrub/tree zones than with turf. We need some landscape contractor presence; field experience with the pros and cons of using drip v spray, customer satisfaction, dealing with agencies etc. are pertinent themes for the discussion. John Ossa from Rain Bird will be on hand to provide a product demonstration. Representatives from Soquel Water and the City of Santa Cruz will provide overviews of rebate programs, water rates and landscape water use regulations. And so to round things out, can you present the landscape contractor perspective? Sign up at:

When: Friday April 5th from 10am to 3pm
Where: Cabrillo College Horticulture Center

Free lunch will be provided! Informational link, please share.

Roy Sikes | Water Conservation Specialist
Soquel Creek Water District | 5180 Soquel Dr., Soquel CA 95073 |
direct 831-475-8501 x146 | main 831-475-8500


David Williams (left) and Mike Miller of California Conservation Corps help install a native plant landscaping on Bridge Street Wednesday. (Photo by Erik Chalhoub/Register-Pajaronian)

David Williams (left) and Mike Miller of California Conservation Corps help install a native plant landscaping on Bridge Street Wednesday. (Photo by Erik Chalhoub/Register-Pajaronian)


Replacing Bridge Street Median

Michael Johnson’s project noted in the Register-Pajaronian

Shared from The Register-Pajaronian, and written by ERIK CHALHOUB - Feb 20, 2019

WATSONVILLE — The days are numbered for the notoriously green median on Bridge Street.

Crews from the City of Watsonville and California Conservation Corps are currently tearing out the grass on the median between Bronte and Tuttle Avenues, and replacing it with drought tolerant plants, wood chips and drip irrigation.

Michael Johnson, who manages the city’s Landscape Water Conservation Program, said work on the first phase of the project is expected to wrap up next week, weather permitting. The landscape on the medians across the entire Bridge Street will be done over a series of three phases, with the final phase expected to be completed in 2021.

“It’s going to be beautiful,” Johnson said. “There are so many benefits to it, but mostly I see it as a beautification project.”

Johnson said the more than 40-year-old landscaping consisted of inefficient sprinklers that would spray over the road, and on vehicles passing through, when it switched on.

He added that city officials looked to begin the project about seven years ago, holding community meetings with residents to gain input, but were met with opposition. However, with drought conditions and residents becoming more conservation-minded, attitudes have changed, he said, and most residents in the area now fully support the project.

“A lot has changed in seven years,” Johnson said.

The City of Watsonville offers incentives to residents and businesses who are looking to conserve water. visit

Much thanks to Vision Recycling for the excellent mulch and to Chris Elliot and the Aqua Green Landscape Irrigation team for rehabilitating the ancient irrigation systems for this project. —Michael Johnson

Link to the article in The Register-Pajaronian

Advertise in the Central Coast Seascape Newsletter!

Advertising is now available for 2019 in this online newsletter! Reach your target audience monthly. Sign up for large, medium or small ads. For specs and pricing contact:


Board Meeting Minutes

Central Coast Chapter CLCA November Board Meeting

By Phil Dundas, Secretary

February 21, 2019, present: Justin White, Craig Stenehjem, Katia Velasquez, Tish O’Reilly, Phil Dundas, Elise Huffman, Ki Bowman

Call to order by Justin White at 12:10 p.m.


1. Education

a. Soquel Creek WD is putting on an educational event on April 5th, we will advertise this in our upcoming newsletter.
b. Katia to work with Michael on pinning a date down for the PGE 811 educational dinner in late April

2. Suppliers Night

a. Add item for "Recognition sponsor" on the sign-up page at an amount of $150 (Elise) 
b. Katia Secured the venue 
c. Venue cost increased due to new ownership, we will cover the additional cost with the recognition sponsorships
d. Katia will combine raffle prizes from each vendor to reduce the total amount of prizes and make them larger. 
e. Craig will continue to call suppliers       
f. Tish and Chris Elliot will be calling contractors 

3. Community Project:

a. Tish recommended we perform a maintenance cleanup on the animal shelter and get a shout out on the radio program they have. Tish and Justin offered to send (2) guys for a half day. We will need at least 8 guys and someone to oversee the work.
b. Community Garden in Live Oak is currently the 2019 community project. Michael is working on collecting more information including if the garden's owner is a 501C-3.
c.  Facebook - Ki will be friending and following local contractors and businesses in the area to improve our visibility.
d. *Please like our Facebook page!

4. Advertising in the newsletter - Cathy will be calling the partners that have not yet committed to advertising yet. 

5. Calendar - Katia will update the State calendar as new events are added. Please make sure if you have something that should be added to the calendar that you contact Katia. Then please let Elise know of those updates.

6. CPC - Justin will be attending the March CPC meeting in two weeks and will be sharing some notes from the board members regarding reimbursement for State events, Grant scholarship list and update on state website. 

7. It was moved and 2nd to approve reimbursement of chapter board members who attend the CLCA Convention. Reimbursement will be up to $1,000 per board member as allowed by the budget. All voted in favor.

The meeting was adjourned at 1:39 p.m.