In this Second Thursday Garden Talk, Jenn Rodriguez and Laura Bauer from Growing Works—an innovative, wholesale nursery established to provide job training, employment, and horticultural therapy to people with mental health challenges—talk about their nursery's sustainable business model where sales of California native, succulent, and other water-wise plants, contribute to their mission. A plant sale follows the talk which includes smaller California native plants direct from Growing Works. No early-bird sale. Reservations required to attend the talk, admission to The Huntington not required. Rain or shine.
Growing Works is part of the Turning Point Foundation, located in Ventura County, California, providing recovery services, job training, and supported employment to adults with severe mental health diagnoses.
Jenn Rodriguez started gardening at a young age in her native San Fernando Valley. Her delight in all things plants led her to study Horticulture at the University of California at Davis, where she also worked for the Grounds Division and the Arboretum. She's worked in the commercial landscape industry for 25 years in the South San Francisco Bay Area, Santa Cruz County, Mid-Atlantic and Ventura County.
Growing up in Southern California, Laura Bauer has always been interested in the natural world around her. She leaped into horticulture in 2001 by volunteering (and eventually teaching) at the Theodore Payne Foundation for Native Plants. She also took horticulture classes at Mt. San Antonio College and gained practical knowledge through working as a high-end gardener. She started her own specialty garden maintenance company in Pasadena in 2004. After moving to Ventura in 2012, she worked on several projects with Surfrider Foundation's Ocean Friendly Gardens Committee. She has been a member of the APLD and is currently the President of the Board of the Southern California Horticultural Society. She joined Growing Works as assistant manager in April 2022, and loves working with the plants and people.