A good way to learn about organic gardening is to work in a community garden hoe to hoe with the experts.

Spend time in the Rancho Mark West garden, while also enjoying music, crafts, hiking and potlucking, during an "Afternoon Family Garden Party" Sept. 14.

Put on by LandPaths, the event includes working in the garden, with time to "Ask a Farmer." A hike with creek exploration and a potluck feast incorporating fresh veggies from the garden make this a full-on family event. 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. 7125 St. Helena Road, Santa Rosa. RSVP at landpaths.org.

<b>SANTA ROSA:</b> Talk on organic land management

David Perkins, a life-long organic gardener and accredited Organic Land Practitioner, will talk about Organic Land Care Management at the Sept. 23 meeting of the Santa Rosa Garden Club.

Perkins is knowledgable about Biodynamics and permaculture and services as an advocate for Integrated Pest Management as a solution for protecting local watersheds like the Laguna de Santa Rosa.

The meeting is free and open to the public. 1:30 p.m. 2050 Yulupa Ave., Santa Rosa. 537-6885 or email gardenclubevents@yahoo.com.

<b>HEALDSBURG:</b> Attract birds, bees to your garden

Attracting birds, butterflies and bees to your garden is all about the accommodations.

Learn how to make your landscape a destination from a team of experts gathering Sept. 14 and 15 at the Russian River Rose Co.

Representatives from The Audubon Society, the Hallberg Butterfly Garden, The Sonoma County Bee Keeper's Association and the Sonoma County Master Gardeners will be on hand with information on making a haven for beneficial visitors. Presentations will be given at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m both days. A $2 donation is requested. 1685 Magnolia Dr., Healdsburg. 433-7455 or russian-river-rose.com.

<b>SANTA ROSA:</b> Time to get rid of your lawn?

If your lawn has been in the crosshairs for a long time, fall is a good time to pull the trigger.

Master Gardener Sandy Metzger will talk about how to turn your turf into a low-water-use, low-maintenance landscape during a free workshop Sept. 21 at The Harvest for the Hungry Garden in Santa Rosa.

Metzger will talk about how to remove your lawn and then suggest plantings and turf-free landscaping ideas. The workshop will be from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 1717 Yulupa Ave., Santa Rosa. For information call 484-3613.

<b>UKIAH:</b> Take a water-wise walking tour

Take a walking tour of Ukiah Sept. 21 to see neighbors who have incorporated water-wise techniques and technologies into their home landscapes.

The 1?-mile walk led by the Mendocino County Inland Master Gardeners will feature legal graywater systems, drip irrigation, mulching, water-thrifty plants and the use of edibles. Meet at 9 a.m. at the Ukiah Methodist Church parking lot on the corner of Bush and Standley streets. The 2? hour walk is sponsored by the city of Ukiah Water Utility. For information call 485-1290.

<b>SANTA ROSA:</b> Fall plant sale at Willowside School

Bargain plants are up for grabs at the Willowside School Fall Plant Sale Sept. 7.

The student-run nursery will have perennials, roses, grasses, Japanese and Trident maples, deodar cedars, redwoods and cypress as well as a multitude of succulents, bonsai crabapple, Chinese quince and elm trees. Pack home a 3- to 6-foot red/yellow magnolia for $25 to $40.

Sale hours are from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 5299 Hall Road at Willowside in west Santa Rosa. The next sale will be on Sept. 28. For information call 569-4724.

<b>SONOMA COUNTY:</b> Free Master Gardener lectures

The Sonoma County Master Gardeners are holding a series of free lectures and workshops for the fall planting season. All are held from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information call 565-2608 or visit sonomamastergardeners.org.

<b>Sept. 14, Sonoma</b> — Fall in the Garden: Pauline Haro will discuss the time to plant fall vegetables, fall color and most California natives as well as go over the nuts and bolts of tool maintenance. Sonoma Valley Regional Library, 755 West Napa St., Sonoma.

<b>Sept. 14, Windsor </b>— Bee Smart, an Introduction to Native Bees and Raising Mason Bees: Learn how to make your landscape a magnet for native bees with Master Gardener Janet Calhoon. Windsor Regional Library, 9291 Old Redwood Hwy., Bldg. 100.

<b>Sept. 14, Healdsburg</b> — Supermarket Orchids Survival Class: Don't throw away that supermarket orchid. Bring it to this popular workshop and Master Gardener Ann Chambers will teach you how to keep it alive and blooming for many years. This is a hands-on workshop, so bring your orchids. Healdsburg Regional Library, 139 Piper St. For more information call 565-2608.

<b>Sept. 14, Petaluma</b> — Conquering Gophers and Moles: Learn how to fight garden theft by moles and gophers from Jim Lang, who will discuss the correct trapping techniques and the best traps to use and how and where to put them. Petaluma Regional Library, 100 Fairgrounds Drive.

<b>Sept. 21, Cloverdale</b> — Restoring Habitat, One Garden at a Time: Learn how to revive the natural ecosystem with the thoughtful use of native plants. Master Gardener Mary Lou Milkoff will discuss how to welcome birds, butterflies, beneficial insects and bees into your yard. Learn to make your garden diverse and sustainable, cutting down on labor and use of water, pesticides and fertilizers. Cloverdale Regional Library, 401 N. Cloverdale Blvd.

<i>You can direct Home & Garden news to meg.mcconahey@pressdemocrat.com or 521-5204.</i>