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Local nursery donates to San Diego Zoo

FALLBROOK – After operating a business in Fallbrook for over 40 years, Joe and Judy Rico of Santa Margarita Growers (formerly Nickerson Nursery) decided it was time to semi-retire. Joe hopes to continue with his consulting, pruning, troubleshooting etc., while Judy hopes to get back to some community service.

Since they were closing the business, they decided to make a donation of plants to the San Diego Zoo, which was happily accepted.

On Feb. 15, several safari-clad employees of the zoo came up and loaded three trucks with plant material. They have since been back for more.

Bamboo plants for the Pandas and junipers for the Polar bear enclosure were among some of the items the zoo happily took.

Mike Letzering, the zoo’s horticulture manager, said the facility was very grateful for the donations as they are suffering budget cuts.

The Ricos are looking forward to making a trip to the zoo soon and said they enjoy knowing they made a small but positive difference in the beautiful zoo and botanical gardens that Fallbrookians are so fortunate to live near.


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