Dig in! Spring into gardening for Earth Day

Earth Day began in 1970, and as the environmental movement became more grounded in our schools, laws and everyday ways of life, more and more local events sprouted up.

It’s also time for dozens of Whatcom County gardening organizations to spring into action with plant sales, workshops and lectures having to do with all things green — or purple, fuchsia, yellow or red.

Bellingham Farmers Market, which offers plants and produce from local farmers on a seasonal basis, was recently dubbed the top farmers market on the West Cost by Sunset Magazine, quite an honor to be chosen from among the markets in California, Oregon, Hawaii and Washington (see sunset.com/travel/top-10-western-farmers-markets for details).

Kelley James, a volunteer for Nooksack Salmon Enhancement Association, encourages volunteers to turn out for a day of “getting dirty hands” for Earth Day by restoring stream-side habitat, planting trees, mulching and removing invasive plants along Terrell Creek on Saturday, April 18.

Meet at 9 a.m. at Birch Bay Bible Community Church, 7039 Jackson Road, to catch a free shuttle. Volunteers get a free lunch and a T-shirt. Tools and gloves will be provided. Details: 360-715-0283, n-sea.org.

Here are a few other upcoming events in our area. Some events require registration or a fee.

Saturday, April 18

Vertical Gardening: Vine and Climbing Plants: 9 a.m., Garden Spot Nursery, 900 Alabama St. Horticulturalist Rachel Zeutenhorst of Tissues and Liners Nursery talks about new dimensions in vertical gardening. Free. Details: garden-spot.com, 360-676-5480.

Wild Food Foraging: Spring Greens with Abe Lloyd: 10:30 a.m., leaving from downtown Community Food Co-op, 1220 N. Forest St. Head out to do some fieldwork, exploring what is edible and learning local ethnobotany. The class then returns to the kitchen to transform raw ingredients into cuisine.

Bring gloves, plastic bags, rubber boots, notebook, sack lunch, and water. Class is 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and costs $39 per person. Led by Abe Lloyd, director of Salal, the Cascadian Food Institute in Bellingham ( cascadianfood.net). Register at 360-383-3200.

April 21 and 23

WSU Extension’s Gardening Green Class 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Bellingham Public Works Department, 2221 Pacific St. Relaxed class offers presentations, demonstrations, hands-on experience, native plant walk, and tours of sustainable landscapes. Details: extension.wsu.edu/gardening/Pages/default.aspx.

April 22

Sustainability Club Rummage Sale: 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Whatcom Community College Syre courtyard, or in Syre Student Center rooms 107-108 if raining. Free admission. Proceeds support water bottle refill station to be installed on campus. Donations welcome; bring items to Kulshan room 216. Details: 360-383-3534.

Earth Day Celebration: 3-8 p.m., Boundary Bay Brewery & Bistro Beer Garden, 1107 Railroad Ave. Free. All-ages event raises awareness about green resources in Whatcom County, with representatives from local organizations available from 3 to 5 p.m. to answer questions and show samples of their ideas and products. Groups include Wild Whatcom, RE Sources for Sustainable Communities, Sustainable Connections, and PSE's Green Power Program

The Community Food Co-op will present “The Real Food Show” at 6 p.m., a documentary about increasing nutrition and health knowledge and motivating children to make healthy food and lifestyle choices. More about the program: strongertogether.coop/voices-from-the-field/the-real-food-show.

Barbecue and bar service at Boundary Bay starts at 3 p.m., and Cherry Blossom Family Delivery performs at 7 p.m. Details: 360-647-5593, bbaybrewery.com.

April 23

Bellingham Senior Activity Center Annual Plant Sale: 9 a.m.-4 p.m., Bellingham Senior Activity Center, 315 Halleck St. Browse selections from local nurseries, including houseplants, vegetable starts and home-grown plants. Proceeds benefit the center. Details: 360-733-4030, wccoa.org/index.php/BellinghamSeniorActivityCenter.

April 25

Edible and Sustainable Landscaping Workshop : 10:30-noon, Cloud Mountain Farm & Nursery, 6906 Goodwin Road, Everson. No registration required. Be prepared to be outside. Details: cloudmountainfarmcenter.org, 360 966-5859.

Japanese Landscape Design: 10 a.m.-noon, Ferndale Public Library, 2125 Main St. Hans Wressnigg, owner of NIWA Japanese Inspired Landscape Design, presents a workshop on creating garden space that fuses Japanese aesthetics with plants that thrive in our region. Hosted by Washington State University Master Gardeners Extension. Details: whatcom.wsu.edu/ch/mg.html, 360-384-0050.

Apple Blossom and Honey Bee Festival: Bellewood Acres, 6140 Guide Meridian, Lynden. Pearl Django in concert at 7 p.m. April 25 for people 21 and older. Cocktails and dining available. Doors open 6:30. Event benefits honeybee research.

Events April 26 include 5K trail (rgister at bellewoodfarms.com before April 23); beekeeping; bee demonstrations; orchard tours (tickets $3); and local honey goods. Details: bellewoodfarms.com, 360-318-7720.

April 30

Mt. Baker Plant Sale: 3-6 p.m., Mount Baker High School, 4936 Deming Road. Mount Baker High School’s horticulture program hosts annual plant sale at the school’s greenhouse. Details: 360-383-2015.

May 2

Birchwood Garden Club Plant Sale: 9 a.m.-noon, Bellingham Public Library, 210 Central Ave. Annual event supports group that maintains the library’s flower beds. Details: 360-778-7323, birchwoodgardenclub.org.

May 9

Whatcom County Extension Annual Plant Sale: 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Hovander Homestead Park, 5299 Nielson Ave., Ferndale. Hosted by Master Gardeners of Whatcom County; proceeds support WSU Whatcom Master Gardener program. Details: 360-676-6736, whatcom.wsu.edu/ch/mg.html.