Tropical Gardening: Time to celebrate annual Hawaii Island Wiliwili Festival

Our forests and landscapes can change rapidly.

Hawaii’s endemic Erythrina sandwichensis, or wiliwili, is a colorful flowering tree of the dryland forests, and is vulnerable to threats such as feral pigs, goats, insects and diseases. According to Jen Lawson, executive director of the Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative, the group is responsible for protecting a 275-acre tract, where rare and endangered shrubs and trees are safe from wild goats and other grazing animals.

Normally there would be an opportunity to visit this little known piece of our paradise as part of the Hawaii Island Wiliwili Festival, but because of COVID-19, Jen is encouraging folks to visit the group’s website, https:www.waikoloadryforest/wiliwilifestival/, for a virtual tour and other activities. There will be limited guided tours at the protected site from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. on Feb. 12-13, but with COVID restrictions in place, they are encouraging folks to go virtual.

Get involved in this great environmental endeavor.

Warming weather has created ideal conditions for Myrtle Rust (Austropuccinia psidii) to cause defoliation, dieback and even death of our beloved ohia and many other related species in the Myrtle family. About 150 species are susceptible including Mountain Apple, guava, eucalyptus, callistemon, melaleuca and

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Starck Real Estate launches fourth annual Diaper Drive

For the fourth straight year, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Starck Real Estate is rolling out its February diaper drive to support The Diaper Bank of Northern Illinois.

Previous diaper drives have delivered more than 20,000 diapers plus cash donations to support the cause. Over 5 million low-income families with babies and toddlers look to diaper banks across the U.S. for help in obtaining a regular supply of diapers. Those in need of these services also include the disabled and elderly.

According to Phyllis Mueller of the Northern Illinois Diaper Bank, “We are thrilled with the support that Berkshire Hathaway Starck Real Estate provides to us! This is the fourth year they have collected diapers and dollars for the Diaper Bank of Northern Illinois, and they always collect the specific sizes we need the most. The generous cash donations they have collected for us also have allowed us to purchase sizes that we need most into the spring months.”

Starck is also donating to the Willow Creek Care Center and the Bloomingdale Township Pantry.

“We are enormously proud of what our offices are doing,” states Aaron Starck, president of Starck Real Estate. “Every year our brokers outdo themselves in collecting more diapers

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Katten, Cushman & Wakefield to Hold 14th Annual Outlook on the Commercial Real Estate Market

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Jan. 26, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Katten, in partnership with Cushman & Wakefield, announced today that it will feature five industry leaders at the 14th Annual Outlook on the Commercial Real Estate Market. The free, invitation-only, virtual event will take place on January 27.

“We look forward to joining Cushman & Wakefield to bring the Charlotte business community together for a frank and insightful discussion about the commercial real estate market in the year ahead,” said Daniel S. Huffenus, event moderator and Katten Real Estate partner. “This year we plan to take a long look at how the pandemic, financial uncertainty and a new federal administration may impact the trends and issues facing our region.” Several Katten attorneys will join Huffenus virtually, including Karen Nelson, newly named managing partner of the firm’s Charlotte office, and Frank Arado, chair of the Southeast Real Estate practice.

Revathi Greenwood, Global Head of Data and Insights, United States, Cushman & Wakefield, will be the keynote speaker for the event and will offer an economic and commercial real estate outlook for 2021. Greenwood will join a panel discussion with several of the region’s real estate thought leaders: Rachel Goldin Jinich, Senior Vice President in

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Annual Whidbey Gardening Workshop grows online this year

An island-wide gardening event that had to be cancelled last year because of the pandemic is coming back with a virtual flair this year.

Organizers and instructors were gearing up for the 32nd Whidbey Gardening Workshop back in March 2020 when the pandemic started to gain momentum, shuttering nonessential businesses and cancelling events.

Nearly a year later, instructors who were supposed to teach classes at the workshop will be able to do so via online video conferencing, the new format that the Whidbey Gardening Workshop is taking on March 6.

Barbara Schmitt, who coordinates marketing for the event, said this year’s workshop will have 27 online classes to choose from. Instructors will be teaching live with the use of Zoom.

In years past, the workshop has been held at Oak Harbor High School, with 450 to 500 participants in attendance. Field trips and a marketplace were also hallmarks of the event, although those parts will be cancelled this year.

This year, participants will be able to watch recordings of all 27 classes after the event is over. From now until Jan. 20, an “early bird” discount is available for tickets priced at $45. The ticket price is $55 after that

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