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Pruning events and workshops jam January

Stephen Scanniello prunes a mature Sutter's Gold rose during his 2019 workshops at the Sacramento Historic Rose Garden. He'll return in January; tickets to attend are now available. (Photo: Kathy Morrison)

Help prune public gardens or just learn pruning techniques

Your spanking-new 2020 calendar is about to get a workout. January is packed with winter garden events, as gardeners turn their attention to the coming growing season.

First up, of course, are pruning demonstrations and prune-athons. We listed some Sacramento County and Roseville events
earlier in the blog ; the ones below are in addition to those.

-- 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Jan. 4, McKinley Rose Garden, 601 Alhambra Blvd., Sacramento. The Friends of East Sacramento members and other volunteers will be busy pruning this 1,200-bush rose garden. Open to all. Bring gloves and bypass pruners. Information:

-- 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 4, Natomas Rose Garden, 2921 Truxel Road, Sacramento. Located next to the South Natomas Public Library, this garden holds more than 500 rose bushes. Bring gloves and wear thorn-resistant clothes. Rain cancels. Reserve a spot via the garden's Facebook page here . Additional pruning dates, at the same time, are Jan. 11 and Jan. 25 .

-- 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 11, Maidu Center, 1550 Maidu Drive, Roseville. The Sierra Foothills Rose Society holds its annual (mostly indoor) winter rose care workshop and chili cookoff. You usually can find master rosarian Baldo Villegas showing off his super-fast rose pruning techniques. Public welcome. Questions:

-- 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 11, Sacramento Historic City Cemetery's heritage rose garden, 1000 Broadway, Sacramento. Stephen Scanniello, president of the Heritage Rose Society, returns to Sacramento for two rose pruning workshops. Scanniello is not only a rose expert but also endlessly entertaining, with stories of roses and rose gardens connected to celebrities. In the morning workshop, he will show how to prune climbing roses. The afternoon workshop will show techniques for pruning and maintaining mature bushes. Tickets are $10 per workshop, available here . Proceeds benefit the Heritage Rose Foundation and Sacramento Historic Rose Garden. More information: .

-- 10:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Jan. 11, fruit tree pruning workshop, Polestar Farm, 25491 County Road 21A, Esparto. Presented by the Yolo County master gardeners and the Friends of the Esparto Public Library, this hands-on workshop covers fruit tree pruning, common fruit tree pests and techniques for keeping fruit trees healthy. Rain moves the event to the library. Free. Information:

-- 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 18 , rose pruning workshop, Woodland Community College, 2300 East Gibson Road, Woodland. Yolo master gardeners Maryellen Mackenzie and Janet Branaman will teach dormant rose pruning techniques and rose care. Free. Information:

-- 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., Saturday, Jan. 18, rose and ornamental shrub pruning workshop, Davis Central Park gardens, Third and B streets, Davis. Rain moves the event to the Bicycling Museum. Techniques for rose and ornamental pruning, taught by UCCE master gardeners of Yolo County. Free.

That's a good start! We will have plenty more events to tell you about soon.

-- Kathy Morrison


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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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