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Learn how to battle bad bugs naturally


Be on the lookout for these pests. They're leaf-footed bugs and they love summer vegetables. Learn natural controls during a free class in Woodland. (Photo: Debbie Arrington)


Yolo County agency offers free class in integrated pest management

What’s bugging you? Get a jump on summer pests and learn how to better protect your garden during a free class in integrated pest management, offered by Yolo County’s Health and Human Services Agency.

Set for 5:15 p.m. next Wednesday, June 26, the course will be held at the Hanna and Herber Bauer Memorial Garden in Woodland. The garden is located at 137 N. Cottonwood St., behind the agency’s Bauer Building. The 90-minute course is scheduled to be held outdoors, weather permitting. (If it’s too hot, the class will retreat indoors.) Participants are encouraged to dress for warm weather (including a hat) and bring water.

Yolo County master gardener Barbara Ohlendorf will lead this short course in IPM, a low-cost and natural approach to reducing unwanted pests in your garden. According to the agency, participants will learn how to identify beneficial insects versus unwanted pests, determine if those pests are becoming a problem and learn about natural methods of pest control. There will be time to ask questions and discuss common pest problems in our region.

Pre-registration is required; deadline is Tuesday, June 25. To register, contact Yolo County’s garden guru David Linebarger at (530) 666-8429 ordavid.linebarger@yolocounty.org.

Free gardening classes are offered throughout the year at this community garden. To learn more about garden activities and classes, visit
https://bit.ly/2WTkctT or www.yolocounty.org .

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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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