April in Sonoma
Euphorbia makes it's appearance in March and April--ahead of most blooming perennials in Sonoma County. And, with over 2,000 species, there is a shape, size and color for every garden. Euphorbia are long-lived, drought-tolerant once established, require little care and deer-resistant. But is its colorful display really a "flower?" Learn more about Euphorbia from Master Gardener Barb Triol.
Master Gardener Glenda Klaucke gives us the low down on growing mild (bell and sweet) peppers. The last average frost date, your local microclimate and the current weather predictions are important considerations when planning your summer garden and especially so for heat-loving peppers. If peppers are put out too soon, their growth is stunted. For some areas in the county, the last average frost date arrives around mid-April; for others, it's early May. Learn more to plan for a successful crop of mild peppers.
Master Gardener Class of 2016
Forty individuals began a course of study in January in preparation to become Sonoma County Master Gardeners. The interns attended classes and labs related to horticulture, grapes and berries, fruit trees and citrus, pruning, plant classification and identification, soil and water management, integrated pest and weed management, entomology, plant disorders and, most recently, food gardening. In April, they will complete their course of study with classes in landscaping, vertebrate pests and sustainable gardening design in addition to a plant identification lab. A regular intern event is a project fair where they are exposed to a myriad of Master Gardener projects in which they may choose to volunteer. There will be many opportunities to volunteer for our biannual garden tour, craft fair and plant sale (BBY—Bloomin’ Backyards) to be held September 18. We are looking forward to working side-by-side with our newest Master Gardeners.
GardenSense - On-site WaterWise Garden Consultations
GARDEN SENSE PROGRAM RECEIVES 1ST PLACE AWARD IN INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION'S SEARCH FOR EXCELLENCE
Sonoma County residents wishing to schedule a garden consultation can click here.
Sonoma County Master Gardeners have partnered with the Sonoma County Water Agency on a new project called GardenSense. The project is intended to help local gardeners further improve their water conservation practices. A free on-site consultation by a pair of GardenSense Consultants will demonstrate to residents how to easily conserve water (and save money) by creating a climate-appropriate garden that is healthy, environmentally sound, and most of all – beautiful!
Topics covered in consultations include advice on lawn removal, low water use plants appropriate to your site, conversion of sprinklers to drip irrigation, an irrigation assessment including overall suggestions for improving water efficiency, and sustainable garden practices.
Growing a Thriving Vegetable Garden with Less Water
The Food Gardening Specialists (FGS) of the UCCE Sonoma Master Gardeners are excited to present water-wise food gardening strategies. Given our hot, dry summers along with the prediction of extended drought, we can’t afford to waste a drop. This video demonstrates how home and community gardeners can grow a thriving vegetable garden with less water. In addition, this video is complemented by a planting scheme and a drip system instruction and shopping list that reflect the 4x8-foot demonstration vegetable bed in the video. Click here for these documents along with additional helpful documents for food gardening with less water.
Ask a Master Gardener
Questions and Answers from the Helpline
Master Gardener-staffed Help Desks are located
at Sonoma County Farmers' Markets and Fairs
Master Gardeners are volunteers trained by the UC Davis Cooperative Extension.
Sonoma County Master Gardeners will provide environmentally sustainable, science-based horticultural information to all of Sonoma County’s population. We strive for diversity and inclusion in all aspects of our organization.
UCCE Farm Advisor: Paul Vossen
SCMG Coordinator: Mimi Enright
|Native Plants for Sonoma County Gardens-Petaluma||4/30/2016|
|Composting: The Single Best Thing You Can Do for Your Garden-Petaluma||5/7/2016|
|Plant 4 Bees – Forage for Honey Bees in All 4 Seasons-Grnvl||5/14/2016|
|Native Plants for Sonoma County Gardens-Healdsburg||5/14/2016|
Seed Bank Speaker Series
The UC Master Gardener Program of Sonoma County is excited to announce a new speaker program in cooperation with the Petaluma Seed Bank. Sustainable landscape practices is the focus of the program and will consist of 6 presentations. Read More about this speaker series>
Sundays with Sue
By SCMG Sue Lovelace
SUNDAYS WITH SUE
Speaking of Earth Day, I feel it is very fitting to congratulate all of you organic gardeners who, by your actions, practice "Earth Day" on a daily basis. Your efforts to grow food sustainably, without the use of chemicals, demonstrates a real commitment to our earth, it's natural resources and to those that eat from the garden. Many, many kudos to you!
You long time beet growers know what I am just finding out: Beets Rock! I had put off growing beets thinking they were much too slow growing for the space they occupied. What I did not realize was that the greens could be consistently consumed while the root is forming. I just make sure to leave some green on each plant. Great addition to salads along with lettuce, chard, spinach, kale, mustard, peas, green onions and radishes that are still flowing out of the garden, thanks to the timely rains we have had.
Speaking of rain, keep it coming! Isn't it great? Right now, plants are waiting in the greenhouse as I slowly transplant them to the garden. My first tomato will go in soon as the little onion patch it will replace is just about eaten. As a precaution against the cool nights, it will have a row cover wrapped around the cage to keep in warmth. The corn is about 4" tall. When it reaches 6", beans will be planted to later climb the stalks. As I mentioned before, a squash has seeded itself nearby and I have it restrained at the moment to keep it from covering the corn. Wish me luck!! Have a good week!
“You cannot get through a single day without having an impact on the world around you. What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” —Jane Goodall
Master Gardeners in Print
Homegrown: Boost soil with wood ashes
Farmers have long recycled wood ashes in fields and growing beds, putting to work the nutrients that remain after wood burns. Read More>
Form and Foliage
Delight your senses: visit Sonoma County Master Gardener Sara Malone's Form and Foliage blog. Janice LeCocq, photographer of Sara's Petaluma garden, gives us her unique perspective. https://formandfoliage.wordpress.com/
The Garden Doctors
Dana Lozano & Gwen Kilchherr
Webmaster: Kim Roche
Food Gardening Editor: Stephanie Wrightson
Laura Salo Long