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Heritage Rose Garden in Jackson welcomes visitors

Amador master gardeners host Open Garden Day

Pink roses on a large bush
Heritage roses tend to be intensely fragrant. (Photos: Debbie Arrington)

Time for a rosy road trip!

Saturday is Open Garden Day at the Heritage Rose Garden in Jackson. During the event hosted by the UC Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners of Amador County, the garden will be open free to the public from 10 a.m. to noon July 17.

Dedicated to preserving antique and rare roses, the Heritage Rose Garden is part of the 200-acre Chichizola/Cuneo Ranch, a historic site preserved by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and the Mother Lode Land Trust. It’s located at 1334 Jackson Gate Road in the foothill town of Jackson, about an hour from Sacramento.

“Master Gardeners will be on site to give tours and discuss heritage roses and the other native and heirloom plants in the garden,” say the organizers.

Large yellow rose
Master gardeners are working to preserve heritage roses.

Heritage roses are generally defined as varieties introduced more than 100 years ago. Volunteers hope to preserve these rose rarities, found at foothill homesteads and cemeteries. Such roses are particularly valued for their fragrance as well as their beauty and hardiness.

What makes them special? According to the master gardeners, “Many have been collected, identified, and lovingly preserved for future generations to enjoy. But they are a piece of history in danger of becoming extinct.”

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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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