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Get smart before you spray for pests!

Learn about pesticides during free webinar

Several bottles of pesticides
Do you know what you're spraying on your garden?
Learn about pesticides during a free webinar
from the UC IPM. (Photo courtesy Fred Hoffman)

What you don’t know can kill you. When it comes to pesticides, that’s particularly true.

By definition, these common chemicals are killers. Their intended target may be pests – bugs, mites and destructive critters of all kinds – but they can be extremely dangerous to people, pets and beneficial wildlife, too.

How do you handle these deadly chemicals? With care – and education.

Learn about pesticides – how to use them, store them, dispose of them and more – during a free webinar presented by the UC Statewide Integrated Pest Management Urban and Community Program.

Set for noon Thursday, Nov. 18, “Understanding Pesticides” also will include how to cut down on chemical use in the garden.
Karey Windbiel-Rojas , associate director for Urban & Community IPM and an area IPM adviser for Yolo and Sacramento counties, will be the presenter.

“Pesticides can be a part of integrated pest management efforts to control pests around the home and landscape,” say the organizers. “However, it is important to understand how to use them safely and effectively to protect human health, non-target species, and the environment. This webinar will cover pesticide basics including types of pesticides, understanding pesticide labels, and how to use them safely.”

Registration is now open for this one-hour webinar and is necessary to receive the Zoom link. To sign up, go to: .


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Garden Checklist for week of July 7

Take care of garden chores early in the morning, concentrating on watering. We’re still in survival mode until this heat wave breaks.

* Keep your vegetable garden watered, mulched and weeded. Water before 8 a.m. to conserve moisture.

* Prevent sunburn; provide temporary shade for tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, melons, squash and other crops with “sensitive” skin.

* Hold off on feeding plants until temperatures cool back down to “normal” range. That means daytime highs in the low to mid 90s.

* Don’t let tomatoes wilt or dry out completely. Give tomatoes a deep watering two to three times a week. Harvest vegetables promptly to encourage plants to produce more.

* Squash especially tends to grow rapidly in hot weather. Keep an eye on zucchini.

* Some weeds thrive in hot weather. Whack them before they go to seed.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushy plants and more flowers in September.

* Harvest tomatoes, squash, peppers and eggplant. Prompt picking will help keep plants producing.

* Remove spent flowers from roses, daylilies and other bloomers as they finish flowering.

* Pinch off blooms from basil so the plant will grow more leaves.

* Cut back lavender after flowering to promote a second bloom.

* One good thing about hot days: Most lawns stop growing when temperatures top 95 degrees. Keep mower blades set on high.

* Once the weather cools down a little, it’s not too late to add a splash of color. Plant petunias, snapdragons, zinnias and marigolds.

* After the heat wave, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, winter squash and sunflowers. Make sure the seeds stay hydrated.

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