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Wanted: Local garden clubs for big show

Spectacular garden designs will be part of the San Francisco Flower and Garden Show, to be held at Cal Expo.
(Photos: Courtesy San Francisco Flower and Garden Show)
At Cal Expo, San Francisco Flower and Garden Show offers free space to non-profits

Garden clubs are always looking for new members. New gardeners can always use some expert help. Here’s a chance for both to find each other while enjoying one of the best flower and garden shows in California.

Cal Expo in Sacramento for the first time , the San Francisco Flower and Garden Show is offering free space for any local non-profit garden club that wants it. Here’s the catch: The club has to staff its information table all four days of the show: March 21 through 24.

That’s next week, which means there’s not much time to organize volunteers – or to delay if a club wants to take this great opportunity.

“We are providing any non-profit (garden organization) that can participate all four days of the show free space as a community outreach,” show owner Sherry Larsen said.

Thousands of show patrons are expected to flow past the garden club area at this event, so it’s a wonderful chance for exposure. Benefitting show goers, these local experts can provide advice to gardeners. For example, the Sacramento County master gardeners are scheduled to staff a table.

Show hours will be: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday, March 21; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, March 22 and 23; and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, March 24. Interested clubs should contact as soon as possible.

Floral arrangements are a popular part of this show.
Tickets are on sale now for this 34th annual event, which moved from the Cow Palace to Cal Expo after a scheduling issue. Besides hundreds of vendors, the show features spectacular garden designs, amazing floral arrangements, dozens of speakers and a gigantic orchid market.

Details: .

- Debbie Arrington


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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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