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Arboretum plant sales are back!

UC Davis announces schedule for contact-free events

Metal card with many pots of plants
The carts will be virtual but the plants will be the same high-quality, zone-friendly
ones they always are this spring at the UC Davis Arboretum Teaching Nursery sales. (Photos: Kathy Morrison)

Due to popular demand, the UC Davis Arboretum will host more contact-free plant sales this spring, starting with two members-only events in February and March. Those will be followed by three public sales in April and May.

Instead of a few hours (with long lines), each sale spans four days followed by reservations-only contact-free pick-up.

Without crowding shoppers into the 1-acre Arboretum Teaching Nursery, these online sales keep both patrons and Arboretum volunteers safe and socially distanced. In addition, shoppers have a lot longer to select their picks from among hundreds of available water-wise varieties, including the Arboretum All-Stars.

For Friends of the Arboretum, the first sale opens at 1 p.m. Feb. 26 and closes at 1 p.m. March 1. Shoppers can make their orders online at any time between that start time and deadline.

Pinkish flowers and green leaves
Biokovo cranesbill, an excellent groundcover for filtered
shade, is on the list for the first sale, which starts
Feb. 26 online. (It's on Page 18 of the 39-page list --
$7.50 for a 4-inch pot.)

And they’ll need some time to make their selections. The plant availability list for the kick-off sale covers 39 pages. (See the inventory for that first sale here: .)

Then, shoppers schedule a specific pick-up time between March 4 and 9 (excluding Sunday, March 7).

New members can join the Friends and enjoy the sale (and other benefits) immediately. A link is provided on the Arboretum’s plant sales webpage.

Other plant sales are scheduled for:

* March 8-12 (members only) with pick-up March 25-30 (excluding Sunday).

* April 8-12 (public) with pick-up April 15-20 (excluding Sunday).

* April 29-May 3 (public) with pick-up May 6-11 (excluding Sunday).

* May 20-24 (public clearance) with pick-up May 27-June 2 (excluding Sunday and Monday).

Details and links:


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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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