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‘Fall Into Gardening’ with El Dorado County master gardeners

Sherwood Demonstration Garden in Placerville hosts community event for all ages

The Sherwood Demonstration Garden is the site of 16 individual garden areas. Free classes are offered there this Saturday.

The Sherwood Demonstration Garden is the site of 16 individual garden areas. Free classes are offered there this Saturday.

Courtesy UCCE Master Gardeners of El Dorado County

October ranks among the best times to garden in the Sierra foothills (and other parts of the Sacramento region). And more people now are interested in learning about gardening than ever before.

Put those two facts together and you get “Fall into Gardening,” a free community event at Sherwood Demonstration Garden in Placerville.

Set for 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Oct 1, “Fall into Gardening” is hosted by the UC Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners of El Dorado County. The morning’s events include activities and advice in all 16 demonstration gardens tended at Sherwood. Expect gardening fun for the whole family with classes every 30 minutes, garden tours and crafts booths for all ages as well as all experience levels.

Parking and admission are free. Master gardeners will be on hand to discuss your garden and landscape questions.

Because of warm soil and (usually) mild days, October is the best time for major landscape renovations. Shrubs, trees and perennials benefit from fall transplanting so they can get established before the stress of summer heat next year.

Featured at this public event will be advice on growing cool-season vegetables as well as drought-tolerant gardening. Plan and plant now to save water for years to come.

Sherwood Garden is located at 6699 Campus Drive, Placerville, on the campus of Folsom Lake College’s El Dorado Center.

Details and directions:

– Debbie Arrington


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of March 26:

Sacramento can expect another inch of rain from this latest storm. Leave the sprinklers off at least another week. Temps will dip down into the low 30s early in the week, so avoid planting tender seedlings (such as tomatoes). Concentrate on these tasks before or after this week’s rain:

* Fertilize roses, annual flowers and berries as spring growth begins to appear.

* Knock off aphids with a strong blast of water or some bug soap as soon as they appear.

* Pull weeds now! Don’t let them get started. Take a hoe and whack them as soon as they sprout.

* Prepare summer vegetable beds. Spade in compost and other amendments.

* Prune and fertilize spring-flowering shrubs after bloom.

* Feed camellias at the end of their bloom cycle. Pick up browned and fallen flowers to help corral blossom blight.

* Feed citrus trees, which are now in bloom and setting fruit.

To prevent sunburn and borer problems on young trees, paint the exposed portion of the trunk with diluted white latex (water-based) interior paint. Dilute the paint with an equal amount of cold water before application.

* Cut back and fertilize perennial herbs to encourage new growth.

* Seed and renovate the lawn (if you still have one). Feed cool-season grasses such as bent, blue, rye and fescue with a slow-release fertilizer. Check the irrigation system and perform maintenance. Make sure sprinkler heads are turned toward the lawn, not the sidewalk.

* In the vegetable garden, transplant lettuce and kale.

* Seed chard and beets directly into the ground.

* Plant summer bulbs, including gladiolus, tuberous begonias and callas. Also plant dahlia tubers.

* Shop for perennials. Many varieties are available in local nurseries and at plant events. They can be transplanted now while the weather remains relatively cool.

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