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Let nature help you de-stress during Therapy Walk

Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Carmichael hosts guided experience

Get outdoors in nature for a walk specifically designed to de-stress the walkers.

Get outdoors in nature for a walk specifically designed to de-stress the walkers. Courtesy Effie Yeaw Nature Center

Feeling stressed? A walk in nature is a proven way to help ease tension and lower stress levels. Mother Nature is good for you; gardens in general can help you feel more relaxed.

Get in touch with nature while lowering your blood pressure during a special Nature and Forest Therapy Walk at 8 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 15, at Effie Yeaw Nature Center in Carmichael.

Nature and forest therapy guide Jane McCluskey will lead the way.

“The forest provides more than we typically perceive,” she says. “Have you caught yourself day dreaming as you look out a window? Caught yourself laughing with baby animal videos? Forest therapy walks are not nature hikes and not meditation retreats. Drawing from old traditions and relatively new findings, nature and forest walks are brief immersions into something you create with nature.

“Forest therapy walks are slow journeys through an area populated by natural life,” she explains. “We cannot tell you what you will experience; we can only tell you what we will be doing in these guided visits. We sometimes walk, sometimes we touch the earth, sometimes we sit and sometimes we do something different.”

This is not about exercise, she adds, but experiencing nature on a personal level.

At Effie Yeaw Nature Center, there’s plenty of nature to experience. Located close to the American River, the center reserves a slice of nature now surrounded by suburbia. See native oaks and the wildlife that make those trees their home. Explore the center’s picturesque plantings, designed with bees and butterflies in mind.

Fee is $35; advance registration is required. Additional Therapy Walks are planned for Nov. 12 and Dec 3. Effie Yeaw Nature Center is located at 2850 San Lorenzo Way, Carmichael.

Details and registration: or 916-489-4918. 


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Garden Checklist for week of July 7

Take care of garden chores early in the morning, concentrating on watering. We’re still in survival mode until this heat wave breaks.

* Keep your vegetable garden watered, mulched and weeded. Water before 8 a.m. to conserve moisture.

* Prevent sunburn; provide temporary shade for tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, melons, squash and other crops with “sensitive” skin.

* Hold off on feeding plants until temperatures cool back down to “normal” range. That means daytime highs in the low to mid 90s.

* Don’t let tomatoes wilt or dry out completely. Give tomatoes a deep watering two to three times a week. Harvest vegetables promptly to encourage plants to produce more.

* Squash especially tends to grow rapidly in hot weather. Keep an eye on zucchini.

* Some weeds thrive in hot weather. Whack them before they go to seed.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushy plants and more flowers in September.

* Harvest tomatoes, squash, peppers and eggplant. Prompt picking will help keep plants producing.

* Remove spent flowers from roses, daylilies and other bloomers as they finish flowering.

* Pinch off blooms from basil so the plant will grow more leaves.

* Cut back lavender after flowering to promote a second bloom.

* One good thing about hot days: Most lawns stop growing when temperatures top 95 degrees. Keep mower blades set on high.

* Once the weather cools down a little, it’s not too late to add a splash of color. Plant petunias, snapdragons, zinnias and marigolds.

* After the heat wave, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, winter squash and sunflowers. Make sure the seeds stay hydrated.

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