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River Park Garden Club hosts spring tour

Enjoy unique private Sacramento gardens plus plant and garden art sales

One of seven gardens on Saturday's tour, this backyard went from huge swimming pool to koi pond, Japanese maples and edibles.

One of seven gardens on Saturday's tour, this backyard went from huge swimming pool to koi pond, Japanese maples and edibles.

Photos courtesy River Park Garden Club

Enjoy a beautiful spring Saturday while wandering in someone else’s backyard during an enchanting local garden tour.

On Saturday, April 22, the River Park Garden Club hosts its third “Seven Special Garden Spaces” tour. Tickets are just $5 for this neighborhood tour featuring private gardens in the River Park neighborhood near Sacramento State. Gardens will be open from 10 a.m to 2 p.m.

On tour day, get your tickets at the corner of Carlson Drive and Camellia Avenue. (Both Carlson and Camellia intersect H Street; go north on either one.) Tickets may also be reserved by calling 916-451-4658.

All seven gardens are unique, says club President Patricia Beach Smith. “There is a friendly dragon in the young-at-heart fantasy garden on the tour, and an immaculately kept garden, with a sense of history and humor. Marvel at the garden that replaced a huge swimming pool with a koi pond, edibles and magnificent Japanese maples.

“Shhhh. One of the gardens is a quiet nesting place for 12 soon-to-be ducklings and their parents,” Smith adds. “Another is a large family garden – with a swimming pool, entertaining areas plus raised vegetable beds and fruit trees.”

At one stop, the Sacramento Perennial Plant Club will offer plants for sale. In another garden, artists will exhibit and sell their garden-centric paintings, jewelry, clothing and garden ornaments.

Club members will be hosts in each garden to answer questions and offer advice.

The club is also seeking candidates for next year’s tour. Prospective gardens will be toured this month. “We need to see them in the spring,” Smith says.

For more details:


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of June 4:

Because of the comfortable weather, it’s not too late to set out tomato and pepper seedlings as well as squash and melon plants. They’ll appreciate this not-too-hot weather. Just remember to water.

* From seed, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, melons, squash and sunflowers.

* Plant basil to go with your tomatoes.

* Transplant summer annuals such as petunias, marigolds and zinnias.

* It’s also a good time to transplant perennial flowers including astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia, salvia and verbena.

* Let the grass grow longer. Set the mower blades high to reduce stress on your lawn during summer heat. To cut down on evaporation, water your lawn deeply during the wee hours of the morning, between 2 and 8 a.m.

* Tie up vines and stake tall plants such as gladiolus and lilies. That gives their heavy flowers some support.

* Dig and divide crowded bulbs after the tops have died down.

* Feed summer flowers with a slow-release fertilizer.

* Mulch, mulch, mulch! This “blanket” keeps moisture in the soil longer and helps your plants cope during hot weather.

* Thin grapes on the vine for bigger, better clusters later this summer.

* Cut back fruit-bearing canes on berries.

* Feed camellias, azaleas and other acid-loving plants.

* Trim off dead flowers from rose bushes to keep them blooming through the summer. Roses also benefit from deep watering and feeding now. A top dressing of aged compost will keep them happy. It feeds as well as keeps roots moist.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushier plants with many more flowers in September.

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