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Need garden advice? Check out these farmers markets

Placer County master gardeners offer expertise at several locations during the month

This image of showy milkweed and a bee is the cover photo for the Placer County master gardeners' 2024 Gardening Guide and Calendar, now on sale.

This image of showy milkweed and a bee is the cover photo for the Placer County master gardeners' 2024 Gardening Guide and Calendar, now on sale.

Screenshot from video by UCCE master gardeners of Placer County

This time of year, gardeners have plenty of questions: What happened to my tomatoes? How can I keep my peppers producing? Is this bug a good guy or a bad guy?

The best people to field those questions? Master gardeners. They’re prepared with the latest university research as well as countless hours of experience. When it comes to local backyard mysteries, they (usually) have the answers.

This late summer and fall, Placer County master gardeners are bringing their services to the public via local farmers markets. They’ll staff information tables at 10 farmers markets in September plus one more in August: Tuesday, Aug. 29, at The Fountains of Roseville, from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Best of all, the service is free. Bring examples (in a sealed plastic bag or container) or photos to help with plant diagnosis or insect identification.

You also can catch the master gardeners at these locations:

-- Auburn Farmers Market, 150 Auburn Folsom Road, Auburn; 8 a.m. to noon Sept. 2 and 16.

-- Fowler Ranch Farmers Market, Fowler Nursery, 3111 Lincoln Newcastle Highway, Lincoln; 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sept. 3 and 17.

-- The Fountains Farmers Market, 1198 Roseville Parkway, Roseville; 8:30 to 1 p.m. Sept. 5, 12, 19 and 26.

-- Sun City Lincoln Farmers Market, 965 Orchard Creek Lane, Lincoln; 8 a.m. to noon Sept. 13 and 27.

In addition, they will have a booth at the Auburn Fall Home Show, Sept. 22-24, at the Gold Country Fairgrounds in Auburn.

More dates are scheduled for October. Check the master gardeners’ website for details:

Besides getting expert advice, these outreach events are a wonderful opportunity to pick up a copy of the master gardeners’ award-winning 2024 Gardening Guide and Calendar. The theme: “Try Something New … Ever-Changing Gardens.” The master gardeners will sell this invaluable guide at many of their upcoming appearances. Watch the short video they filmed about the Gardening Guide and Calendar here.


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For week of Nov. 26:

Concentrate on helping your garden stay comfortable during these frosty nights – and clean up all those leaves!

* Irrigate frost-tender plants such as citrus in the late afternoon. That extra soil moisture increases temperatures around the plant a few degrees, just enough to prevent frost damage. The exception are succulents; too much water before frost can cause them to freeze.

* Cover sensitive plants before the sun goes down. Use cloth sheets or frost cloths, not plastic sheeting, to hold in warmth. Make sure to remove covers in the morning.

* Use fall leaves as mulch around shrubs and vegetables. Mulch acts as a blanket and keeps roots warmer.

* Stop dead-heading; let rose hips form on bushes to prompt dormancy.

* Prune non-flowering trees and shrubs.

* Clean and sharpen garden tools before storing for the winter.

* Brighten the holidays with winter bloomers such as poinsettias, amaryllis, calendulas, Iceland poppies, pansies and primroses.

* Keep poinsettias in a sunny, warm location – and definitely indoors overnight. Water thoroughly. After the holidays, feed your plants monthly so they’ll bloom again next December.

* Rake and remove dead leaves and stems from dormant perennials.

* Plant spring bulbs. Don’t forget the tulips chilling in the refrigerator. Daffodils can be planted without pre-chilling.

* This is also a good time to seed wildflowers and plant such spring bloomers as sweet peas, sweet alyssum and bachelor buttons.

* Plant trees and shrubs. They’ll benefit from fall and winter rains while establishing their roots.

* Set out cool-weather annuals such as pansies and snapdragons.

* Lettuce, cabbage and broccoli also can be planted now.

* Plant garlic and onions.

* Bare-root season begins now. Plant bare-root berries, kiwifruit, grapes, artichokes, horseradish and rhubarb.

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