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Show water-wise inspiration in new video contest

'Water Spots' open to student filmmakers in Sacramento area

Water use, especially for lawns and landscaping,
is just one angle for public-service videos. Student
filmmakers are eligible to enter their 30-second
spots in the new Regional Water Authority contest.
(Photo: Kathy Morrison)

“When in drought …,” what do you do?

That’s the question posed to young filmmakers by the Regional Water Authority for its “Water Spots” video contest.

Sacramento-area middle and high school students are eligible to enter this contest, which offers a $250 cash prize. The winning video also is eligible to run in a local movie theater this summer as part of local water providers’ awareness campaigns.

Students are challenged to create a 30-second public-service video that inspires the public to use water efficiently, says the RWA, the umbrella organization for local water providers in Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado and Yolo counties. This year’s theme: “When in Drought …”

And we are still in severe drought. According to (the website of the National Integrated Drought Information System), two-thirds of California is considered under “severe drought” conditions including all of the Central Valley.

Deadline for video submission is 11:59 p.m. March 11. Entrants will be screened by a panel of judges including: Monica Woods, chief meteorologist at ABC10; Kathleen Dodge, executive director of the El Dorado Lake Tahoe Film & Media Office; and Lisa Cuellar, program manager at the California Water Efficiency Partnership. Finalists will be posted online for a public vote.

Find all of the contest details at: .


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of Dec. 3:

Make the most of gaps between raindrops. This is a busy month!

* Windy conditions brought down a lot of leaves. Make sure to rake them away from storm drains.

* Use those leaves as mulch around frost-tender shrubs and new transplants.

* Rake and remove dead leaves and stems from dormant perennials.

* Just because it rained doesn't mean every plant got watered. Give a drink to plants that the rain didn't reach, such as under eves or under evergreen trees. Also, well-watered plants hold up better to frost than thirsty plants.

* Prune non-flowering trees and shrubs while they're dormant.

* Clean and sharpen garden tools before storing for the winter.

* Brighten the holidays with winter bloomers such as poinsettias, amaryllis, calendulas, Iceland poppies, pansies and primroses.

* Keep poinsettias in a sunny, warm location. Water thoroughly. After the holidays, feed your plants monthly so they'll bloom again next December.

* Plant one last round of spring bulbs including daffodils, crocuses, hyacinths, anemones and scillas. Get those tulips out of the refrigerator and into the ground.

* This is also a good time to seed wildflowers such as California poppies.

* Plant such spring bloomers as sweet pea, sweet alyssum and bachelor buttons.

* Late fall is the best time to plant most trees and shrubs. This gives them plenty of time for root development before spring growth. They also benefit from fall and winter rains.

* Lettuce, cabbage and broccoli also can be planted now.

* Plant garlic and onions.

* Bare-root season begins. Plant bare-root berries, kiwifruit, grapes, artichokes, horseradish and rhubarb. Beware of soggy soil. It can rot bare-root plants.

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