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'Gardeners on the Rocks' host Thursday garden tour


Trail through trees
This shows one of the tree trails through Sun City
Lincoln Hills. (Photo courtesy Sun City Lincoln Hills)

See private gardens in Sun City Lincoln Hills

Get out and enjoy perfect spring weather during a real rarity – a midweek garden tour.

On Thursday, April 28, the Lincoln Hills Garden Group will host a home garden tour featuring private landscapes in its retirement community.

“Are you ready for some ideas to spruce up your yard, maybe make a few changes, or just enjoy a refreshing look at what others have done with their yards?” say the organizers. “We invite the community to attend this well-received event that the Garden Group sponsors each year through the generosity of homeowners who are willing to share their yards.”

First stop of this tour is Orchard Creek Lodge, 965 Orchard Creek Lane, Lincoln, in Sun City Lincoln Hills.

“Drive through Orchard Creek Lodge entrance portico between 9:30 and 11 a.m. and pick up a packet with driving directions, addresses, and descriptions of each yard,” say the organizers. “There is no need to park and get out as volunteers will be there to hand you a copy.”

The tour packets are $5; please bring exact change if possible, the organizers add.

Nicknamed “Gardeners on the Rocks,” the Lincoln Hills Garden Group welcomes visitors from throughout the greater Sacramento area to this popular tour. Sun City Lincoln Hills is known for its tree-studded community and views of the foothills.

More details and photos of past tours: http://lhgardengroup.org/home-garden-tour/ .


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Dig In: Garden checklist for week of Jan. 29

Bundle up and get work done!

* Prune, prune, prune. Now is the time to cut back most deciduous trees and shrubs. The exceptions are spring-flowering shrubs such as lilacs.

* Now is the time to prune fruit trees, except apricot and cherry trees. Clean up leaves and debris around the trees to prevent the spread of disease.

* Prune roses, even if they’re still trying to bloom or sprouting new growth. Strip off any remaining leaves, so the bush will be able to put out new growth in early spring.

* Prune Christmas camellias (Camellia sasanqua), the early-flowering varieties, after their bloom. They don’t need much, but selective pruning can promote bushiness, upright growth and more bloom next winter. Feed with an acid-type fertilizer. But don’t feed your Japonica camellias until after they finish blooming next month. Feeding while camellias are in bloom may cause them to drop unopened buds.

* Clean up leaves and debris around your newly pruned roses and shrubs. Put down fresh mulch or bark to keep roots cozy.

* Apply horticultural oil to fruit trees to control scale, mites and aphids. Oils need 24 hours of dry weather after application to be effective.

* This is also the time to spray a copper-based oil to peach and nectarine trees to fight leaf curl. Avoid spraying on windy days.

* Divide daylilies, Shasta daisies and other perennials.

* Cut back and divide chrysanthemums.

* Plant bare-root roses, trees and shrubs.

* Transplant pansies, violas, calendulas, English daisies, snapdragons and fairy primroses.

* In the vegetable garden, plant fava beans, head lettuce, mustard, onion sets, radicchio and radishes.

* Plant bare-root asparagus and root divisions of rhubarb.

* In the bulb department, plant callas, anemones, ranunculus and gladiolus for bloom from late spring into summer.

* Plant blooming azaleas, camellias and rhododendrons. If you’re shopping for these beautiful landscape plants, you can now find them in full flower at local nurseries.

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