Author Archives: Deborah Zierten

Avatar for Deborah ZiertenDeborah joined the League's staff in 2013 as the Education & Interpretation Manager. She brings with her extensive experience teaching science, developing curriculum and connecting kids to the natural world.

Plants and Their Families

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When you’re out with your family, have you ever heard, “You look exactly like your father,” or “You have your mother’s nose!”? Just as human family members share physical characteristics in common, plants do as well. Plant family similarities might not …

Photo by Scott Catron

Smallest Kids, Tallest Trees

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A highlight of my job is visiting the many education programs that we support through our redwood education grants. This year we supported 24 parks, schools and non-profits so they could bring over 6,000 students to our beautiful redwood forests. …

Robin eggs.

Colorful Eggs Found in the Wild

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As we go into the Easter weekend, kids are hand painting and dying eggs all colors of the rainbow in preparation for the hunt on Sunday. This tradition is not only a fun art project but can become an educational …

More kids will now be able to explore our national parks, like these enjoying Yosemite. Photo by something.from.nancy, Flickr Creative Commons

Every Kid in a Park

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“It is not half so important to know as to feel when introducing a young child to the natural world.” -Rachel Carson In 2005, Richard Louv released his influential book, Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children from Nature-Deficit Disorder. …

Dr. Seuss characters like the Lorax have taught and tickled kids and adults alike for generations.

Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss

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“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” ~ the Lorax This famous quote by the title character of The Lorax is well-known in the world of conservation, and has likely …

Students collect data on sword ferns as part of our citizen science program Fern Watch.

Citizen Scientists Take Over

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Last week, I participated in the first-ever citizen science conference put on by the Citizen Science Association. This major event attracted over 600 people from 26 different countries! Science buzz was in the air, and the talks covered a range …

Studying Cycles in Nature — And How You Can Help!

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The Bay Area is a pretty amazing place to live, but one complaint I often hear is about the lack of seasons. We never really get cold, snowy winters, or cool, crisp falls with vibrant leaf colors to take our …

Cathedral Grove at Muir Woods National Monument. Photo credit: Tonatiuh Trejo-Cantwell

Establishing Muir Woods National Monument

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“Whatever occupation man may follow, there is planted within him a need of nature, calling gently at him at times to come and enjoy, imperiously commanding at other times to seek recuperation and strength.” — William Kent Have you ever …

Muir was the champion of majestic, wild landscapes like this one in Yosemite Valley.

Is John Muir’s Legacy Still Relevant?

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In a recent blog, I paid tribute to the wonderful work of John Muir. We learned a little bit about what he accomplished in his lifetime and how his legacy is alive throughout the peaks, valleys and forests of California. …

John Muir

John Muir, the Legend

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If you have spent any time in the amazing natural areas of California, you won’t go very far without experiencing the presence of John Muir — a man who did more for the conservation of our beautiful wild places during …

Turkeys in the Redwoods

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As we sit back and relax on the day after Thanksgiving, our bellies still full from our decadent meals the day before, I’m thinking about turkeys, redwoods, and what the Native Americans might have eaten years before us at this …

No matter what your age, spending time among the redwoods can be a rewarding experience. Photo by Paolo Vescia

Enjoying the Redwoods at Every Age

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Through this blog I often write about my experiences with youths in the redwoods. I love seeing the expressions on kids’ faces when they see a banana slug, find a tiny redwood cone, or see a tall redwood tree for …

The Origins of Halloween

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Happy Halloween everyone! Finally, the day has arrived when you get to dress up however you want. Maybe months of planning even went into your costume, your creativity shining through. But did you ever wonder why we celebrate Halloween? Where …

Fall foliage along the Eel River. Photo by mlhradio, Flickr Creative Commons

Fall Has Arrived

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Although our fall-changing trees are not as numerous as in the east, we can still see some evidence of fall here on the West Coast. In our redwood forests, look for big leaf maples and vine maples for their changing color.

You may see a red-breasted nuthatch at Memorial Park this Saturday!

Discover the Secrets of Memorial Park

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Join us this Saturday, September 27 as we walk the trails of Memorial Park discovering everything this amazing redwood forest has to offer. The League is partnering with San Mateo County Parks, the California Academy of Science and Sequoia Audubon for a Memorial Park Bioblitz.

We’re BioBlitzing Again!

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Here at the League, we love getting people out into the redwoods to explore, learn and have fun. And we especially love bringing out everyone’s inner scientist to discover the creatures big and small that call the redwood forest their …

The Wilderness Act Turns 50 Today

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This day marks the 50th anniversary of the Wilderness Act. For 50 years, hundreds of thousands of people have been enjoying the most beautiful and remote areas of our nation while protecting some of the most ecologically important habitats we …

Happy Anniversary to Our State Tree

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Today marks the anniversary of the adoption of the coast redwood as California’s state tree. In my opinion, no tree could better represent the golden state. For a little history on state symbols you have to go back to the …

A coast redwood tree cone —one of the smallest cones, from the tallest tree. You can see how the scales are fused together creating a spiral pattern in the cone. Photo by Finch, Flickr Creative Commons

What’s So Cool About Cones?

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During a recent hike in the Berkeley hills with a friend, the topic of cones came up. There is an activity I like to do with students to teach them about cones: I bring in a small redwood cone and …