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Herbs, tomatoes and more are big attraction May 4

Anise hyssop is the 2019 Herb of the Year. At its May 4 Open House, Morningsun Herb Farm plans to give all moms a free hyssop plant as an early Mother's Day gift. (Photo: Courtesy Morningsun Herb Farm)
Morningsun Herb Farm hosts 24th annual Open House

Herbs rank among the most popular plants for beginning gardeners – and experienced gardeners, too. Their appeal is easy to understand. Herbs often need little room (and not much water) while adding flavor and fragrance to our world. And many herbs are very easy to grow.

See hundreds of examples at Morningsun Herb Farm, a destination nursery in Vacaville. Saturday, May 4, Morningsun hosts its
24th annual Open House from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.

Besides Morningun’s beautiful demonstration gardens and amazing assortment of herb plants for sale, the Open House features demonstrations, specialty vendors and food. More than 20 vendors and garden groups will take part.

In addition to all those herbs, Morningsun offers a huge selection of perennials, succulents, summer vegetables and tomato transplants.

Radio host Farmer Fred Hoffman will be talking tomatoes during his 11:30 a.m. presentation, “Tomato Troubleshooting.” He’s one of seven guest speakers, starting at 10 a.m.

In honor of Mother’s Day, every mom gets a gift: An anise hyssop. That agastache is the 2019 herb of the year.

Morningsun is located at 6137 Pleasants Valley Road, Vacaville. Details including directions: .


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of Dec. 3:

Make the most of gaps between raindrops. This is a busy month!

* Windy conditions brought down a lot of leaves. Make sure to rake them away from storm drains.

* Use those leaves as mulch around frost-tender shrubs and new transplants.

* Rake and remove dead leaves and stems from dormant perennials.

* Just because it rained doesn't mean every plant got watered. Give a drink to plants that the rain didn't reach, such as under eves or under evergreen trees. Also, well-watered plants hold up better to frost than thirsty plants.

* Prune non-flowering trees and shrubs while they're dormant.

* Clean and sharpen garden tools before storing for the winter.

* Brighten the holidays with winter bloomers such as poinsettias, amaryllis, calendulas, Iceland poppies, pansies and primroses.

* Keep poinsettias in a sunny, warm location. Water thoroughly. After the holidays, feed your plants monthly so they'll bloom again next December.

* Plant one last round of spring bulbs including daffodils, crocuses, hyacinths, anemones and scillas. Get those tulips out of the refrigerator and into the ground.

* This is also a good time to seed wildflowers such as California poppies.

* Plant such spring bloomers as sweet pea, sweet alyssum and bachelor buttons.

* Late fall is the best time to plant most trees and shrubs. This gives them plenty of time for root development before spring growth. They also benefit from fall and winter rains.

* Lettuce, cabbage and broccoli also can be planted now.

* Plant garlic and onions.

* Bare-root season begins. Plant bare-root berries, kiwifruit, grapes, artichokes, horseradish and rhubarb. Beware of soggy soil. It can rot bare-root plants.

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