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Thank you to our readers; Sacramento Digs Gardening celebrates 5 years

That's 1,825 posts and counting -- all related to local gardening

Blog co-founders Debbie Arrington and Kathy Morrison gained some early notoriety via a 2019 Sacramento Magazine article.

Blog co-founders Debbie Arrington and Kathy Morrison gained some early notoriety via a 2019 Sacramento Magazine article. Photo by Gabriel Teague/Courtesy of Sacramento Magazine

By Debbie Arrington and Kathy Morrison

Happy birthday to us! Sacramento Digs Gardening turns 5 years old today, June 1.

For us, this milestone represents more than 1,825 posts – at least one every day for five years. That’s commitment as well as a lot of gardening news. That total also illustrates the abundance of garden activities and interest in our area. Sacramento really does dig gardening. As Sacramento journalists, we knew it, and as Sacramento gardeners, we live it.

Gardening and cooking go hand in hand; we eat a lot of what we grow. So early in our evolution, we added seasonal recipes every Sunday, using what we harvested from our own gardens or found at farmers markets. Our garden-fresh recipes have become one of the most popular parts of our gardening blog. We recently compiled our Spring recipes into our first digital cookbook, “Taste Spring!”, with more seasonal e-cookbooks to come.

Why did we start Sacramento Digs Gardening? There was a need – in spring 2018 the Sacramento region suddenly lacked a one-stop source for local gardening information and events – so we filled it. (Remember: Nature abhors a vacuum.) 

Like you, we’re active local gardeners, members of community gardens and local garden clubs or organizations. We write about what’s happening in our local gardening community – what our readers need to know right here, right now. That could be flower tours or plant sales, pest outbreaks or disease alerts, weather forecasts or water restrictions; it’s all local garden news.

Because – as "Farmer Fred" Hoffman says – all gardening is local.

That’s helped us grow in these five short years into a top source of garden information for Sacramento-area gardeners. More than 2,300 readers follow our blog on Facebook. Many receive our daily e-newsletter direct to their inboxes.

To each and every reader, thank you! We sincerely appreciate your interest and support.

Specifically, we want to thank local garden clubs – there are dozens! – and the UC Cooperative Extension master gardeners of Sacramento, Placer, El Dorado and Yolo counties. These educational organizations are vital for our local gardening communities; they help make us all better gardeners.

Thank you to local nurseries and garden businesses. We appreciate all that you do and want to help you thrive. (After all, we’re customers.)

Thank you to the UC Davis Arboretum and Public Gardens, one of our region’s greatest resources of gardening inspiration (plus fantastic water-wise plants). Thank you to the Sacramento Tree Foundation; what would the City of Trees be without you?

A special shoutout here to Farmer Fred himself for his support and encouragement. When he was still on the radio locally, he brought us on as guests several times to talk gardening. Now he's a busy podcaster -- with a far-reaching audience -- and still includes us in his 'casts. (He also offers free advice on extending our reach. Thanks, Fred!)

We also must note and thank our most dedicated Facebook follower: the Elk Grove Community Garden, which since the beginning has shared links to so many of our blog posts.

Thank you also to the Regional Water Authority and its BeWaterSmart.info program. We’re honored to have you as our first sponsor. (And yes, we could use more sponsors so we can keep SDG growing.)

And a big, big thank you to CaliforniaLocal.com, our web host and media partner since last September.  Mike, Chris, Eric and Sharan, you’ve helped us immensely in keeping SDG online and reaching more readers. Your patience with us has been remarkable, and we are especially grateful.

California Local also was instrumental in the creation of our e-cookbooks. More user-friendly features such as garden maps and growing guides are in the works.

If no one read Sacramento Digs Gardening, it would have withered away long ago. Reader enthusiasm feeds our blog and has kept us producing, right through the pandemic years and now after. If nobody cared, we wouldn’t do it.

But so many people obviously do care about gardening and garden activities in the Sacramento region; that’s how we stay motivated and focused. We care, too.

We’re looking forward to more milestones to come. Grow with us!

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Taste Summer! E-cookbook

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Find our summer recipes here!

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Taste Spring! E-cookbook

Strawberries

Find our spring recipes here!

Thanks to our sponsor!

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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.

Taste Fall! E-cookbook

Muffins and pumpkin

Find our fall recipes here!

Taste Winter! E-cookbook

Lemon coconut pancakes

Find our winter recipes here!