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Check out the tool library

Stocking a tool shed or garage can be expensive. Even renting equipment can run into serious dollars on a tight DIY budget. But there’s an alternative and it is just as easy as checking out a library book.

The Santa Rosa Tool Library is stocked with hand tools and electric power tools for those weekend projects and repairs.

Do-it-yourselfers can check out a tool for a week at a time, with the possibility of renewal.

The non-profit public tool library located in downtown Sant Rosa ahs tools for landscaping, home repair and car repair and maintenance.

Anyone who live is at least 18 and livings or works in Sonoma County us eligible. A valid DMV ID or recent piece of mail with current address is required for verification.

The library is open from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Tools can be placed on hold just like the book library. And there is a lending limit of 8 tools at one time. The overdue fine is $1 a day, not including days when the library is closed.

The library also accepts donations if good working condition that are not heavily rusted. Those that can’t be loaned out are sold at the library’s Tool Sale. Donations are tax deductible.

The Tool Library is at 642 5th St., Santa Rosa (at the intersection of Humboldt and 5th Street.) It shares space with professional offices.

The library, which was founded more that eight years ago by Dustin Zuckerman, recently received a $5,000 Community Grant from the Sonoma Wine Country Weekend and a $1,000 Santa Rosa Community Improvement grant to purchase high demand tools.

The infusion of new tools means that few people have to get on a waiting list for tools, Zuckerman said. The tool library is also preparing to launch a website in Spanish.

For more information visit borrowtools.org or email fixit@borrowtools.org.


Open Garden Days

The Garden Conservancy’s Open Garden Days move to Marin County on May 21, with a chance to visit gorgeous gardens in Kentfield and Ross.

The Ross garden has the remnants of an old Japanese garden. The Kentfield garden was featured in Garden Design Magazine and includes an orchard, and herb and vegetable gardens.

Admission is $7 per garden. Each is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Addresses and tickets are available online at gardenconservancy.org. Tickets can also be purchased at the gardens on the day of the event. Open Garden Days returns to Marin County June 4 with three more gardens.


Rose Society rose show

May is the peak time for roses, and the Redwood Empire Rose Society will celebrate with their 50th annual Rose Show May 21 at The Luther Burbank Art & Garden Center.

The show will include a plant sale of both roses grown by members and good companion plants for roses. 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. 2050 Yulupa Ave., Santa Rosa.


Bee, bird friendly garden

Learn how to make your garden more friendly to native birds, bees and insects during a free workshop May 21 at the Rohnert Park/Cotati Library.

Master Gardener Bill Klausing will discuss how to make a “mostly native” habitat garden that also is water-wise and beautiful. 10:30 a.m. to 12:30p.m. 6250 Lynne Conde Way. Sonomamastergardeners.org or 565-2608.


Workshop on summer gardening

If you haven’t got your summer garden planted, there is still time. Master Gardener Steve Albert will give a free workshop May 21 on growing tomatoes, everyone’s favorite edible. He will talk about how to start tomatoes from seed, how to transplant your seedlings, and how best to feed, water and protect them right up to harvest. 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Windsor Public Library, 9292 Old redwood Highway, Bldg 100, Santa Rosa. For information visit Sonomamastergardeners.org.


Grange Plant Sale

The Hessel Grange throws its annual plant sale May 21 with hundreds of veggie starts, flowers and perennials grown by members. Shoppers can also fortify with patries coffee and tea. Hours are from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at The Hessel Grange/Community Center, 5400 Blank Road, Sebastopol. For information visit hesselgrange.org.


Resilience Challenge

There’s still time to get in on the Community Resiliece Challenge, a county-wide campaign to get everyone from homeowners to neighborhoods, organizations and government agencies, involved in practical projects that help the environment.

This is the sixth year of the challenge, which goes on throughout the month of May. Projects can be geared toward saving water, growing food, conserving energy, reducing waste or building community.

Since it was launched more than 5,000 people have registered 22,949 sustainability actions. Last year, 97 people pledged to transform their lawns into drought=tolerant landscaping and saved over 1.3 million gallons of water in the first year.

People have until May 1 to register a project although it doesn’t have to be completed by that date. Examples include installing a food garden, rainwater harvesting system or drip irrigation, or making lifestyle changes such as making use of reuseable coffee mugs and water bottles or not idling your engine for more than 30 seconds.

The county of Sonoma, the Town of Windsor and every city in the county have adopted proclamations declaring May Community Resilience Challenge Month.

Individuals, schools, organizations, businesses and government entities are welcome to join the effort, which is under the coordination of Daily Acts, a Petaluma-based non-profit that educates people about how to live their lives more sustainably.

Daily Acts will measure the impact of The Challenge by quantifying the number of participants, the number of actions registered and the benefits of of those projects, such has how many gallons of water was saved or square feet of lawn removed.

For more information or to register visit dailyacts.org.

Compiled by Meg McConahey. Direct Home and Garden news to meg.mcconahey@pressdemocrat.com or call 521-5204. Please submit items three weeks in advance of an event. On Twitter @megmcconahey.

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