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Explore landscapes at El Dorado demonstration garden

Sherwood Demonstration Garden adds hours, tours

Japanese garden
The Japanese garden is one of the showpieces
of the Sherwood Demonstration Garden in
Placerville. (Photo courtesy El Dorado County
master gardeners)

Now that it is March, the El Dorado County master gardeners' beautiful demonstration garden in Placerville has shifted into longer public hours and resumed docent-led tours.

The Sherwood Demonstration Garden is located at the El Dorado Center of Folsom Lake College, 6699 Campus Drive. The garden now is open 9 a.m. to noon every Friday and Saturday through November, unless there is a 60 percent or more chance of rain forecast.  (Other closure alerts, more appropriate for summer: A forecast of 95 degrees or more from 9 a.m. to noon, or if air quality level hits 150.)

Master-gardener-led tours are offered on the first Saturday of the month, including this Saturday, March 5. The tours are free, starting promptly at 9 a.m. If no one appears to take the tour, the guide will leave at 9:15 a.m. Group tours can be arranged by emailing or calling (530) 621-5512.

What is there to see at Sherwood? So many plants: 16 garden areas, from rock garden to perennials garden, as well as a native plants garden, shade garden, Japanese garden and a children's garden. This link leads to an artistic map of the garden.

Note: No dogs are allowed in the garden. Daily parking passes on the college property are $2. Directions are here .

(Bonus for visitors this Saturday: The Community Observatory also at the El Dorado Center will be open for solar viewing from 10 a.m. to 11:59 a.m. Find out more information here .)

The El Dorado master gardeners also offer free public education classes. An in-person class on "Firewise Landscaping" will be taught by Alice Cantelow on Wednesday, March 9, from 9 a.m. to noon at the Cameron Park Community Center,  2502 Country Club Drive, Cameron Park. Call or email the contacts listed above to register.

-- Kathy Morrison


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of June 4:

Because of the comfortable weather, it’s not too late to set out tomato and pepper seedlings as well as squash and melon plants. They’ll appreciate this not-too-hot weather. Just remember to water.

* From seed, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, melons, squash and sunflowers.

* Plant basil to go with your tomatoes.

* Transplant summer annuals such as petunias, marigolds and zinnias.

* It’s also a good time to transplant perennial flowers including astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia, salvia and verbena.

* Let the grass grow longer. Set the mower blades high to reduce stress on your lawn during summer heat. To cut down on evaporation, water your lawn deeply during the wee hours of the morning, between 2 and 8 a.m.

* Tie up vines and stake tall plants such as gladiolus and lilies. That gives their heavy flowers some support.

* Dig and divide crowded bulbs after the tops have died down.

* Feed summer flowers with a slow-release fertilizer.

* Mulch, mulch, mulch! This “blanket” keeps moisture in the soil longer and helps your plants cope during hot weather.

* Thin grapes on the vine for bigger, better clusters later this summer.

* Cut back fruit-bearing canes on berries.

* Feed camellias, azaleas and other acid-loving plants.

* Trim off dead flowers from rose bushes to keep them blooming through the summer. Roses also benefit from deep watering and feeding now. A top dressing of aged compost will keep them happy. It feeds as well as keeps roots moist.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushier plants with many more flowers in September.

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