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Got Sacramento garden questions? Find answers here


Check out the Water-Efficient Landscape at the Horticulture Center. (Photo: Kathy Morrison)






Master Gardeners offer expert advice during Open Garden at the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center



This has been a puzzling and perplexing summer for many Sacramento gardeners, who undoubtedly have bushels of questions about what went wrong (or right) and why.

But where to find answers? Open Garden, of course. Saturday morning, Sept. 8, from 9 a.m. to noon, join the UC Cooperative Extension Sacramento County Master Gardeners at the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center in Fair Oaks Park, 11549 Fair Oaks Blvd., Fair Oaks.

This popular free event offers a wealth of good gardening advice in an atmosphere filled with examples of what works in Sacramento gardens.

During the Open Garden, visitors can explore the site's many demonstration gardens including its Water-Efficient Landscape (great ideas for drought-tolerant plants) and easy-reach orchard (which makes harvesting simple).

Master Gardeners, who are constantly trying out new methods and varieties at the Hort Center, will staff the demonstration areas and answer questions.

Got a mystery plant or pest? Bag it up (preferably in a sealed plastic bag) and these experts will identify it and offer appropriate advice.

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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of Feb. 18:

It's wet to start the week. When you do get outside, between or after storms, concentrate on damage control:

* Keep storm drains and gutters clear of debris.

* Clean up tree debris knocked down by wind and rain.

* Where did the water flow in your garden? Make notes where revisions are necessary.

* Are any trees leaning? See disturbances in the ground or lawn around their base? Time to call an arborist before the tree topples.

* Dump excess water out of pots.

* Indoors, start peppers, tomatoes and eggplant from seed.

* Lettuce and other greens also can be started indoors from seed.

* Got bare-root plants? Put their roots in a bucket of water until outdoor soil dries out. Or pot them up in 1- or 5-gallon containers. In April, transplant the plant, rootball and all, into the garden.

* Browse garden websites and catalogs. It’s not too late to order for spring and summer.

* Show your indoor plants some love. Dust leaves and mist to refresh.

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