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Get some TLC for fruit trees

SacTree program open to South Sacramento residents

Apple on tree
Fruit trees can get some help to be healthy and productive via the Sacramento
Tree Foundation. (Photo: Kathy Morrison)

Could your fruit trees use some TLC? Have your citrus been less than fruitful? Or are you interested in growing your own supply of backyard fruit?

If you live in South Sacramento, you’re in luck. The Sacramento Tree Foundation has a special program, just for your neighborhood.

Thanks to additional state funding for SacTree’s mini-grant program, SacTree is offering free fruit tree care services to residents in South Sacramento.

“These services will help to ensure your trees develop well, and are on their way to a long and fruitful future,” SacTree posted online. “We’ve teamed up with regenerative agriculture expert Dominic Allamano to support previous fruit tree recipients and other South Sacramento residents in caring for their fruit trees.”

Available until Jan. 31, services include pruning, soil care and education. Trees will get thoughtful pruning to improve structure and future growth. Soil will get a boost with compost, worm castings and mulch. And residents will get expert advice on how to help those fruit trees thrive.

These services are part of the Sacramento Food Forestry Project, bringing more healthy food to those in need.

Boundaries for the project area are generally Fruitridge Road on the north, Mack Road on the south, Freeport Boulevard on the west and Power Inn Road on the east. (The service area does not include Sacramento Executive Airport; for a map, see web page.)

For more information or 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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