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Green Acres goes to the (virtual) dogs

'Dog Days of Summer' returns as online event

Large German shepherd on a lawn
Rambo knows how to stay cool during the Dog Days of
Summer. (Photo: Debbie Arrington)

It’s time to celebrate the dog days of summer in a uniquely Sacramento kind of way.

This week, Green Acres Nursery & Supply salutes hot weather gardening and our best canine friends during its annual “Dog Days of Summer,” Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 7-9.

This year’s celebration will be a virtual garden party with online activities and presentations plus special offers and prizes. (Follow Green Acres at @idiggreenacres to join the fun.)

Among the highlights will be “Cool Combos,” a live streaming event on Facebook and Instagram at 11 a.m. Friday. Participants will learn how to create beautiful, eye-catching container gardeners while also enjoying music and recipes for a cool summer get-together.

Saturday will feature a new addition to Green Acres’ “Garden Talk” series on YouTube. The theme is timely and practical: “What to Do in your Garden in August.”

Of course, dogs will have their turn in the spotlight, too – after all, it’s Dog Days! Green Acres is saluting “Canine Crusaders” with a nod to local pet organizations and ways people can help. See some of these organizations here:
https://idiggreenacres.com/pages/dog-days-of-summer-canine-crusaders .

Coinciding with some of the Northern Hemisphere’s hottest weather of the year, Dog Days are an ancient tradition and get their name from the position of Sirius – the Dog Star – in the sky. Sirius is the brightest star in the constellation Canis Major, the “Greater Dog.” The Romans believed Sirius gave off warmth as well as brightness, causing the summer to heat up. (Actually, it’s the Earth’s tilt towards the sun. During summer, the sun’s rays hit Northern Hemisphere at a more direct angle for more hours, creating longer and hotter days.)

In Roman lore, Dog Days encompass the 20 days before and after Sirius’ alignment with the sun. This year, that’s July 3 to Aug. 11, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac.

What plants can take the heat of Dog Days in Sacramento? Find out this week with the help of Green Acres’ experts.

For more details and links: https://idiggreenacres.com/pages/dog-days-of-summer .



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Garden Checklist for week of April 14

It's still not warm enough to transplant tomatoes directly in the ground, but we’re getting there.

* April is the last chance to plant citrus trees such as dwarf orange, lemon and kumquat. These trees also look good in landscaping and provide fresh fruit in winter.

* Smell orange blossoms? Feed citrus trees with a low dose of balanced fertilizer (such as 10-10-10) during bloom to help set fruit. Keep an eye out for ants.

* Apply slow-release fertilizer to the lawn.

* Thoroughly clean debris from the bottom of outdoor ponds or fountains.

* Spring brings a flush of rapid growth, and that means your garden needs nutrients. Fertilize shrubs and trees with a slow-release fertilizer. Or mulch with a 1-inch layer of compost.

* Azaleas and camellias looking a little yellow? If leaves are turning yellow between the veins, give them a boost with chelated iron.

* Trim dead flowers but not leaves from spring-flowering bulbs such as daffodils and tulips. Those leaves gather energy to create next year's flowers. Also, give the bulbs a fertilizer boost after bloom.

* Pinch chrysanthemums back to 12 inches for fall flowers. Cut old stems to the ground.

* Mulch around plants to conserve moisture and control weeds.

* From seed, plant beans, beets, cantaloupes, carrots, corn, cucumbers, melons, radishes and squash.

* Plant onion sets.

* In the flower garden, plant seeds for asters, cosmos, celosia, marigolds, salvia, sunflowers and zinnias.

* Transplant petunias, zinnias, geraniums and other summer bloomers.

* Plant perennials and dahlia tubers for summer bloom.

* Mid to late April is about the last chance to plant summer bulbs, such as gladiolus and tuberous begonias.

* Transplant lettuce seedlings. Choose varieties that mature quickly such as loose leaf.

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