Archive for the ‘Butterflys’ Category

We have lost Pat Pizzo

SCCAOR Sept 2014 work-party

Patrick Pizzo, a long time member and guiding light of the Martin-Fontana Parks Association passed away on the 2nd of January 2020 at the age of 75.  If you look around our two parks, you will see many examples of his handy work.  Pat was the brains & brawn behind all the native plant islands located in Jeffrey Fontana Park.  His most extensive creation was the 5 Islands Project near Meridian Ave.

Here is a link to a 2017 article on Pat and his many accomplishments by Our City Forest:

To view a larger image please click on any photo below:


A updated video of the Five Island Project by Patrick Pizzo

These Islands were created by the Martin-Fontana Parks Association (MFPA) to provide alternative landscape features using California Native plants. The five berms, or islands, are situated between Heritage Coast Live Oaks and were finalized in January of 2018.  They are in Jeffrey Fontana Park just across the street from 1278 Oakglen Way in San Jose.

More beautiful additions to Jeffrey Fontana Park

#45 by artist Morgan Bricca


This beautiful painting & the one below were done by Artist Morgan Bricca (  It’s located just East of McAbee Rd. in Jeffrey Fontana Park before crossing the pedestrian bridge in the Butterfly Garden area.  Thanks to Dave Poeschel for the photo.

This beauty is located just east of the intersection of McAbee Rd & Golden Oak Way

Help save the Monarch Butterflies

Planting Milkweed Saves Monarch Butterflies

Contact me at: for free plants!!

February 2017 Newsletter


Just click on the photo to download the Newsletter or click here

Saving the Monarch Butterfly

On Saturday morning, December 5th, a group of volunteers from the Martin-Fontana Parks Association (both officers & residents) and folks associated with the SCV-CNPS, Santa Clara Valley Chapter of the California Native Plant Society, planted a 20 by 4 foot patch IMG_0264of the Monarch caterpillar habitat plant, Asclepias Fascicularis, a California Narrowleaf Milkweed. Most of you are aware that the population of the West-Coast Monarch butterflies has dramatically decreased, due in large part to the near elimination of the host plant.

Young plants were planted and seeds sown. This patch constitutes another step in our goal to establish a corridor of Monarch habitats through our two parks. We already have Dave Poeschel’s Butterfly Garden that was established March 2014 on the west-side of Golf Creek in the middle of Jeffrey Fontana Park. Dave has extended plantings from the Golf Creek bridge both east and west. Soon, patches of milkweed will be established from the Fontana Tot Lot to Almaden Expressway. We now have three patches of narrow-leaf milkweed planted in the west end of T.J. Martin Park, located in the undisturbed meadow between the formal park and Coleman Avenue. Plans are underway to complete the ‘corridor’ concept through both parks and to perhaps extend the corridor beyond, along the PG&E right-of-way.

Thanks to all those that participated to make this happen. Special thanks to Dave Poeschel and Lee Pauser for collecting the seeds this last autumn. Thanks, also to Patrict Pizzo who arranged and directed this planting.

Won’t it be wonderful to see all those orange-black-and white Monarch Butterflies once again, visiting our parks and gardens?  monarch butterfly photo (2)

Help us plant Milkweed for the Monarch habitat

Monarch butterflies on a blazing star by Al Batt.

Monarch butterflies on a blazing star by Al Batt.

Saturday,  Dec 5th at 9:30 am, we will be adding to the monarch habitat by extending the planting at the west end of TJ Martin Park. Please join us near the turn at Fleet St. to spend about one hour planting more habitat for the monarch butterflies. Bring a shovel and gloves, milkweed will be there ready for the planting. With the recent rains the soil is fairly soft and the planting should go quickly. The project will complement and extend a monarch trail from Oak Canyon eastward through our parks to provide a habitat trail for the butterfly population.

Map of location

Help save the Monarch Butterfly

Late, late notice… but there will be a minor planting project in TJ Martin Park, down by Coleman this noon.

If you have a little time, please help us to put in some Milkweed plants. Won’t take long. Bring a shovel and meet-up at the
the following location:

LocationThis is in the large field at the west end of the park.

Martin-Fontana Parks Association to increase the Monarch Butterfly habitat

“Monarch Decline Prompts Concern”

 San Jose Mercury News Jan. 3, 2015 narrowleaf-milkweed-v1-600x398


Endangered species protection may be in store.

Monarch butterflies are disappearing at such an alarming rate that they may become an endangered species. Our TJ Martin and Jeffrey Fontana Parks, as well as Guadalupe Oak Grove Park are poised to become an important part of the effort to bring them back to Almaden Valley.

To attract and support the Monarch Butterfly population in the Spring of 2015, Monika Gardias, a California Native Plant Society member, will be working with MFPA project managers Dave Poeschel and Patrick Pizzo, and a volunteer group, to plant several plugs of Narrowleaf Milkweed. This CA native plant and primary Monarch butterfly habitat nourishes the caterpillars and provides a site for the orange and black butterflies to lay their eggs.

narrowleaf-milkweed-v2-600x398Several areas of our parks have been identified to join the butterfly habitat established last March in Fontana Park near Golf Creek. Volunteers are needed to plant several plugs of Asciepias fascicularis, Narrowleaf Milkweed. They require only wet season water to flourish and become a butterfly habitat, joined by several species of native flowers.

If you are interested in helping on a workday sometime this month, or possible in February, please email Monika Gardias,, or Pat Pizzo, for more information.