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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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Garden Checklist for week of May 19

Temperatures will be a bit higher than normal in the afternoons this week. Take care of chores early in the day – then enjoy the afternoon. It’s time to smell the roses.

* Plant, plant, plant! It’s prime planting season in the Sacramento area. If you haven’t already, it’s time to set out those tomato transplants along with peppers and eggplants. Pinch off any flowers on new transplants to make them concentrate on establishing roots instead of setting premature fruit.

* Direct-seed melons, cucumbers, summer squash, corn, radishes, pumpkins and annual herbs such as basil.

* Harvest cabbage, lettuce, peas and green onions.

* In the flower garden, direct-seed sunflowers, cosmos, salvia, zinnias, marigolds, celosia and asters.

* Plant dahlia tubers. Other perennials to set out include verbena, coreopsis, coneflower and astilbe.

* Transplant petunias, marigolds and perennial flowers such as astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia and verbena.

* Keep an eye out for slugs, snails, earwigs and aphids that want to dine on tender new growth.

* Feed summer bloomers with a balanced fertilizer.

* For continued bloom, cut off spent flowers on roses as well as other flowering plants.

* Don’t forget to water. Seedlings need moisture. Deep watering will help build strong roots and healthy plants.

* Add mulch to the garden to help keep that precious water from evaporating. Mulch also cuts down on weeds. But don’t let it mound around the stems or trunks of trees or shrubs. Leave about a 6-inch to 1-foot circle to avoid crown rot or other problems.

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