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Get 'Smart Choices for Gardening Success'

Placer County master gardeners' 2021 gardening guide and calendar now available


Gardening calendar with flowers on cover
The 2021 gardening guide and calendar from
the Placer County master gardeners is just $10.


Can’t wait for 2020 to be gone? Get a jump on next year with a new 2021 calendar!

Now available is a wonderful calendar packed with information for Sacramento-area gardeners, particularly those that live in foothill communities: The 2021 Gardening Guide and Calendar presented by the UC Master Gardeners of Placer County.

With the theme “Smart Choices for Gardening Success,” this is the 29th edition of the Placer master gardeners’ award-winning calendar and garden guide.

“There has been a surge this year in people interested in growing their own food and this calendar taps into that enthusiasm and can help Northern Californians, from beginners to experts, create, grow and harvest a healthy sustainable garden,” said Paula Agostini, calendar committee co-chairman for the Placer County master gardeners.

Featuring planting, growing and harvesting tips, the 13-month calendar and guide features in-depth articles for every season. Among the topics: Soil testing, planting bare-root berries and trees, how to choose the right tools for the job, seed saving, planting for small spaces and how to help bees.

Find out what to plant when (and where) as well as what’s in season at local farmers markets.

“Additional charts, tables and resources, accompanied by beautiful local photos, provide a wealth of information that any level of gardener will appreciate,” Agostini said.

Priced at $10, the calendar also makes a great gift for gardening friends and family.

— Debbie Arrington

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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of March 3:

* Celebrate the city flower! Catch the 100th Sacramento Camellia Show 3 to 6 p.m. Saturday, March 2, and 10 a.m to 5 p.m. Sunday, March 3, at the Scottish Rite Center, 6151 H St., Sacramento. Admission is free.

* Between showers, pick up fallen camellia blooms; that helps cut down on the spread of blossom blight that prematurely browns petals.

* Feed camellias after they bloom with fertilizer formulated for acid-loving plants.

* Camellias need little pruning. Remove dead wood and shape, if necessary.

* Tread lightly or not at all on wet ground; it compacts soil.

* Avoid digging in wet soil, too; wait until it clumps in your hand but doesn’t feel squishy.

* Note spots in your garden that stay wet after storms; improve drainage with the addition of organic matter such as compost.

* Keep an eye out for leaning trunks or ground disturbances around a tree’s base, a sign of shifting roots in the wet soil.

* Fertilize roses, annual flowers and berries as spring growth begins to appear.

* If aphids are attracted to new growth, knock them off with a strong spray of water or insecticidal soap. To make your own “bug soap,” use two tablespoons liquid soap – not detergent – to one quart water in a spray bottle. Shake it up before use. Among the liquid soaps that seem most effective are Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Soaps; try the peppermint scent.

* Pull weeds now! Don’t let them get started. Take a hoe and whack them as soon as they sprout.

* Prune and fertilize spring-flowering shrubs after bloom.

* Cut back and fertilize perennial herbs to encourage new growth.

* Make plans for your summer garden. Once the soil is ready, start adding amendments such as compost.

* Indoors, start seeds for summer favorites such as tomatoes, peppers and squash as well as summer flowers.

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