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See (and smell) the best roses from four states

ARS conference in Sacramento features huge rose show; plus hear Debbie talk roses and horses

Rose fans take time to smell the flowers at a previous show. The district-wide rose show this weekend will feature the best rose exhibitors from four states.

Rose fans take time to smell the flowers at a previous show. The district-wide rose show this weekend will feature the best rose exhibitors from four states.

Courtesy Peninsula Rose Society

It’s time to smell some champion roses – and learn more about America’s favorite flower.

On Saturday, Oct. 7, Sacramento hosts the Northern California Nevada Hawaii district conference for the American Rose Society. Representatives from dozens of rose societies from four states (southern Oregon is also part of NCNH) will gather at Wyndham Hotel on Date at Madison avenues, just off Interstate 80.

Highlighting the conference: A district-wide rose show featuring the best rose exhibitors from four states. The rose show is open free to the public from 1 to 4:30 p.m.

Besides the seriousness of the competition, what makes this show so unusual: Lots of challenge classes. Those are special classes where exhibitors must meet certain goals, such as multiple matching perfect blooms.

A large rose photo contest and arrangements competition also are part of the district rose show. Come see autumn roses in all their beauty.

In addition to the show, the conference features several speakers, but those talks are only open to those with conference registration ($80 for speakers only). Registration is open until 10 a.m. Saturday at the host hotel.

Saturday’s speakers include Debbie Arrington of Sacramento Digs Gardening. A master rosarian and longtime turf writer, Debbie will present “Thoroughbred Roses: The Queen of Flowers and the Sport of Kings” – a look at roses and racing connections. Her talk will start at 11 a.m.

First speaker of the day is Gwen Quail, past president of the Butte Rose Society, who will discuss “Fragrance: From Your Rose to Your Nose” at 10 a.m. She’ll discuss how chemistry and botany influence our perception of flower fragrance.

At 2 p.m., award-winning author and NPR show host Jennifer Jewell will present “Cultivating Place: Cultivating a Garden Culture of Care and Roses.” Her talk will focus how individual gardeners can be agents for change, one backyard at a time. The popular garden writer also will sign copies of her latest book, “What We Sow.”

At 3 p.m., Jacqui Nye will teach how to take better photos with your cellphone in “From Snapshots to Wow Shots.”

Wyndham Hotel is located at 5321 Date Ave., Sacramento.

Details and forms:


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

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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