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It's bonsai time in Sacramento

Beautiful bonsai will be on exhibit at the Bonsai Sekiyu Kai show on April 6-7, one of four bonsai shows this spring. (Photo courtesy Ron Anderson.)

Four spring shows in 'City of Little Trees'

Do you love bonsai? You’re in the right place. Each spring, Sacramento hosts four bonsai shows, one for each local club. That makes Sacramento the City of Little Trees.

This bonsai extravaganza starts April 6 and 7 with the 42nd annual Bonsai Sekiyu Kai show, to be held at the Buddhist Church of Sacramento, 2401 Riverside Blvd., Sacramento. Open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, this show features beautiful bonsai on display, refreshments, door prizes, a raffle and silent auction.

Vendors and club members will offer plants and bonsai-related items, such as pots, tools and growing supplies.

Special guest will be Yuzo Maruyama, who will conduct demonstrations at 2 p.m. each day. Admission is free. For more information, email .

Next up will be the 60th annual spring show of the American Bonsai Association, Sacramento. On April 13 and 14, a forest of little trees will fill the Shepard Garden and Arts Center, 3330 McKinley Blvd., Sacramento. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day with demonstrations by Dennis Makishima at 1:30 p.m. both days. His demonstration trees will be the prize in afternoon drawings. Admission and parking are free.

Just starting bonsai? As part of this event, ABAS members will conduct a beginner workshop from 10 a.m. to noon April 14. For more information or to sign up, contact Renee Seely at (916) 929-2106, email .

Details: .

After a short break, two more shows are set for May.

On May 4 and 5, the Sacramento Bonsai Club – the nation’s oldest bonsai club – will host its 73rd annual spring show, also at the Buddhist Church of Sacramento. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day with featured 1:30 p.m. demonstrations by Sam Adina each day.

Details: .

Wrapping up Sacramento’s spring bonsai season are the blooming azaleas of Satsuki Aikokai Association of Sacramento at its 41st annual show, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 18 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 19 at Shepard Center. Show admission and parking are free.

Sign up for the popular “Create Your Own Azalea Bonsai” workshop, set for 11 a.m. each day; class fee is $20. Email for more details.


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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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