- Author: Anne Schellman
Giving Tuesday is November 29, 2022! Please join us in this opportunity to give to your local UCCE Stanislaus County Master Gardener Program. Your dollars are used locally to make our county a better place.
Thanks to generous donations from individuals like you, as well as in-kind donations and funding from sponsors, our Sensory Garden has been installed! In fact, the last landscaping step, adding mulch, will be done by volunteers on Giving Tuesday!
These photos show our Master Gardeners installing drip irrigation donated by Hunter Industries, and plants donated by Frantz Nursery.
Where can I see the Sensory Garden?
This garden is located on the east side of the Stanislaus Building, at the main entryway. The garden will be used
The Pollinator Garden
Thanks to a generous donation from the West Stanislaus Resource Conservation District, we are starting our Pollinator Garden. The Great Valley Seed Company donated milkweed seeds which will be planted in the garden, too. Next week, volunteers will be installing irrigation and planting.
How You Can Help
Any amount you can donate helps us grow our gardens and our program! The purpose of the gardens is to showcase low-water use plants the public can see anytime. In addition, the areas will be used as outdoor classrooms to teach topics such as drip irrigation, pollinator gardening, plant identification, low water use gardening, and more!
We are looking to raise $5,000 to help with irrigation installation, tools, seeds, and other needed materials. We are a 501 c (3), so your donation is tax-deductible. https://ucanr.edu/sites/givingtuesday/ This site allows you to give by credit card. (A fee is taken for the use of a credit card.) If you would prefer to give by check, make your check out to “UC Regents” and mail it to:
UCCE Master Gardener Program
3800 Cornucopia Way, Ste A
Modesto, CA 95358
Thanks for your support!
- Author: Denise Godbout-Avant
Whenever a drought happens in California, most of us look for ways to conserve water in our gardens and home. However, with droughts becoming the norm, rather than the exception, practicing water sustainability needs to become a way of life.
How can we conserve water in our daily lives? Our gardens are a good place to start, since about half of urban water is used for outdoor irrigation. The following are some suggestions which can have an impact on the amount of water you use in your gardens.
Practice water-wise garden irrigation by changing sprayers to drip system whenever possible, since sprayers decreases the amount of water going to your plants due to evaporation. Water according to the season, reducing or eliminating watering during the cooler, wet winter months – investing in a water timer with a rain sensor can help with this. Water early in the morning or late in the day when temperatures are cooler. Check your irrigation system regularly to check for leaks, repairing or replacing as needed.
Plant water-wise plants that need little water once established. The above link will provide you with many suggestions. Another wonderful source of plant information is the UC Davis Arboretum All-Stars: https://arboretum.ucdavis.edu/arboretum-all-stars
There are ways to reduce our water use in our homes also, including having a water-efficient washing machine, dishwasher, shower and toilet, and not letting the faucet run while shaving, brushing our teeth, or washing our hands.
These are a few of the many ways we can make being water-wise a way of life in our gardens and homes. Every drop of water counts!
To learn more about our water and ways to use it wisely, join the UCCE Stanislaus County Master Gardeners on Tuesday, June 29th at 6:00pm on Zoom for our talk “Water-wise Tips for Your Garden and Home.” You can sign up at: http://ucanr.edu/water-wise/2021
- Author: Anne E Schellman
The UCCE Stanislaus County Master Gardener Demonstration Garden and Outdoor Classroom!
What would this look like? We envision an accessible garden everyone can visit and explore.
Each week, volunteers will be available for a few hours so you can stop and ask your gardening questions. Once a month, they will be around on the weekend.
Our demonstration garden will also be a place to hold fun events like tomato tastings, kids' gardening activities, health fairs, and Stanislaus County sponsored events.
Imagine meandering paths through colorful and inviting gardens that showcase plants and gardening methods, including a water-wise garden, California native pollinator garden, herb and vegetable garden, fruit orchard, and children's sensory garden.
Outdoor Classroom Amphitheater
Sign up for a class and sit outside and listen to a Master Gardener led class on how to install drip irrigation, prune fruit trees, or compost. Then, “get your hands dirty,” by practicing installing drip irrigation, pruning a fruit tree, or layering a compost pile.
How Can You Help?
Some generous local sponsors have offered to help with in-kind donations of irrigation materials. We need your help in raising funds to help with lawn removal, plants, path material, mulch, and other items. If you know an Eagle Scout or Girl Scout Troupe that needs a project, we are happy to speak to them about benches and gardening art as well!
Please make your gift for #BigDigDay, on June 5, 2020 now to help us get our garden started!
Using the drop-down menu, select “Stanislaus County.” Your donation will go directly to help us fund the garden. Stay tuned for future posts telling you when we break ground and start work!
If you know of an organization willing to donate materials, that's great too! Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photos in this post to help us imagine our new garden are from our sister program, the UCCE San Joaquin Master Gardener Program, located in Stockton.
- Author: Ed Perry
Splitting of navel oranges is a disorder that shows up every few years in the Northern San Joaquin Valley. It's difficult to predict the problem, and once you see oranges beginning to split, it's too late to do anything about it. However, it may be useful to talk about why splitting may occur, and what you can do to help lessen the problem.
While you may not notice it until the fruit begins to ripen, splitting in navel oranges begins in green fruit. The split usually starts at the stylar or navel end of the fruit, the weakest point in the rind. The split may be short and shallow, or it may be deep and wide, exposing the segments. Splitting is most serious in navel oranges, but it may occur in Valencia oranges too.
It is not well understood just what causes splitting, but it's thought to be caused mainly by a combination of environmental conditions. Some studies show that changes in climate such as temperature and relative humidity may have more effect on splitting than anything else. A couple of my citrus reference books indicate that splitting is caused by hot, dry weather, alternating with humid, cloudy weather. Allowing the soil to dry out too much between irrigations is believed to result in increased splitting. However, other research and observations in orange groves have shown that irrigation, fertilizers and other cultural practices make no difference in the amount of splitting that occurs in any given year.
It is obvious that you cannot control all of the factors that cause splitting, since weather conditions are involved. However, you may be able to minimize the problem by making sure that your orange tree is well watered. Remember that orange trees (as well as other citrus) are not drought tolerant and need a constant supply of moisture in the root zone. If your soil is sandy you may need to water a fully-grown orange tree every ten to fourteen days during the summertime. In clay soils, the watering schedule may be every fourteen to twenty-one days. You should continue to water your trees periodically in fall, at least until rain begins.
Ed Perry is the emeritus Environmental Horticultural Advisor for University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) in Stanislaus County where he worked for over 30 years.
- Author: Anne E Schellman
Want to save water* in your home landscape but aren't sure how to get started? The Stanislaus UCCE Master Gardeners have a free class that can help! We will cover:
- Small irrigation changes you can make now to start saving water
- How to design a low water use landscape
- Irrigation tips
- Plants that thrive in low water landscapes
We will also answer these questions:
- Should I "break up with" (tear out) my lawn?
- What kind of water rebates are available if I do?
- How can I save water and keep my lawn?
- Are cacti and succulents the only plants I can grow to save water?
Thursday, June 27, 2019 6:00-7:30 p.m.
Stanislaus County Agricultural Center, Harvest Hall Rooms D&E
Sign up at http://ucanr.edu/lowwater2019 or call Anne Schellman at (209) 525-6862 to reserve your space.
*Over half the water used in urban homes goes towards outdoor landscapes.
Source: Public Policy Institute of California https://www.ppic.org/publication/water-use-in-california