Friday, October 31, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Garden doctor: Veggie gardening available year-round

By
From page A5 | April 16, 2014 |

Question: I moved from the Midwest last year, where we planted a vegetable garden in the spring and “put it to bed” in the fall. California is different! How can I grow onions here? Do people ever use sets? Mine bolted last summer. Also, when can I plant peppers? Tomatoes?
Answer: In the Sacramento area, including Davis, a vegetable garden can be maintained and productive throughout the year. Many people do grow onions here. Seeds are the cheapest way to go but require the longest growing period and will tie up your garden space for a long time.

People grow onions from sets, mainly for a quick crop of green onions. For mature, dry onion bulbs, sets are not recommended because onion varieties used to produce sets are often not well adapted to California and tend to bolt as yours did.

Most people with home vegetable gardens here grow onions from transplants. They are most readily available from nurseries in the fall for November planting and early summer harvest. They may be sold as six-packs, or more practically as “bare root” bundles that are easy to stick in the ground.

Both peppers and tomatoes do best when the soil temperature reaches at least 70 degrees, peppers requiring a bit more heat. If you are starting from seed, you have to begin this project long before plants are big enough to go into the ground, say roughly January-February. If you buy transplants, start looking in April. Even if the days are warm right now, it takes soil longer to warm up than air, and nights are still relatively cool. (There is a very wise saying that “if your garden soil is warm enough that you could sit comfortably without pants then it’s warm enough to plant tomatoes.”)

There is a very accurate guide for seasonal planting times for this area devised by Robert Norris of UC Davis plant sciences. You can request these and other useful handouts by contacting Yolo Master Gardeners; see the contact information below.
Question: I am concerned about water rates increasing and the drought we are in. What are plants that will do well in our climate and use little water, beyond the usual succulents?
Answer: Like succulents, many plants are adapted to get by with less water, or to store water for later growth. Silvery or fuzzy foliage are often clues that a plant has lower water requirements, as are thickened leaves and stalks. They may have brightly colored blossoms that contrast with the foliage and are attractive to butterflies and other pollinators.
Overwatering is probably the most common threat to these plants surviving. They need to be watered to become established, but even if you plant during the hottest weeks, once a week should be more than enough to get them established. Let them dry between waterings and then water conservatively.
Other plants that do well with drought conditions are yarrow, silver artemisias, bearded iris, purple coneflower, snow-in-the-summer, creeping phlox, sunflowers, rosemary, lavender, common thyme and salvias. As always, you will want to group together plants that have similar water and light requirements.

Even with our current drought, you will need to water these drought-tolerant plants to establish them. Once established, they will provide years of pleasure and interest in your garden with little water and little maintenance.
Question: My crop of apples last year looked beautiful, but every one had a worm. What is the culprit? How can I prevent it?
Answer: The culprit is most likely coddling moth. Insecticides might control the target pest but will harm bees and other potential beneficial insects that inhabit the orchard. The pest can be controlled with an ongoing sanitation process to keep all unwanted fruit off the ground, along with use of pheromone traps to confuse the males.

Apples can be bagged when the fruit measures between one-half and one inch in diameter. This is also a practical time to thin the crop. Some apple varieties (usually those with thin skins and later-ripening) are more vulnerable to damage.

You can learn more about this pest and others at the UCD IPM web site, http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7412.html.
————

Master Gardeners are available to help! On April 26 and May 17, a good place to find them is at UCD Arboretum plant sales, http://arboretum.ucdavis.edu/plant_sales_and_nursery.aspx, and in the gardens on the annual Pence Gallery Garden Tour on May 4 from 2:30 to 5 p.m. For more information on the tour, see http://www.pencegallery.org/events.html#gardentour.

Master Gardeners will teach a free class in “Plant Propagation from Soft Wood Cuttings” on May 10 from 9 to 10 a.m. at Grace Garden, behind the Davis United Methodist Church, 1620 Anderson Road.

— Send questions, addressed to the “Garden Doctor,” by email to mgyolo@ucdavis.edu, voice mail to 530-666-8737, or regular mail to UCCE Master Gardeners, 70 Cottonwood St., Woodland, CA 95695. Be sure to include your contact information because any questions not answered in the Garden Doctor column will be answered with a phone call or email to you.

You can request the emailed Yolo Gardener newsletter and learn more about the Master Gardener program in Yolo County at http://ucanr.edu/sites/YCMG.

Comments

comments

Special to The Enterprise

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Gardner guilty of murder, with special circumstances

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    State superintendent makes campaign stop in Davis

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Meet Poppenga at Saturday reception

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2

    Bob Dunning: Lawn display causes a theological crisis

    By Bob Dunning | From Page: A2 | Gallery

     
    Couple killed in Yolo County crash

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A2

    Same-party races challenge incumbents

    By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

     
    State races test one-party rule

    By New York Times News Service | From Page: A2

     
    Indians celebrate Diwali with gala on Sunday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    Rairdan dinged for late report

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A3

     
    Veterans will tailgate at ‘Salute to Heroes’ game

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Wolk hailed for environmental votes

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Yamada honored for leadership on aging issues

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Embroidery group meets at mall

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Bet Haverim will hear Israel update

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Local artisans featured at holiday craft fair

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Got bikes? Donate ‘em!

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Kids walk for friends at Birch Lane

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Explorit: Creep out with some spooky science

    By Lisa Justice | From Page: A4

    Shambhala offers Tai Chi class

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    Bones for Life classes offered

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Enjoy wine, music and art at Sunday fundraiser for DHS choir

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A9

     
    .

    Forum

    New-school cheating on the smartphone

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    My choices on Tuesday

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    Garamendi, Dodd get my votes

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Tom Meyer cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

     
    High hopes for Sunder

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Public service is in her heart

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    A calm, thoughtful voice

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Sunder is a perfect fit

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    Best predictor is past behavior

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

    Vote for students, with Tuck

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

     
    .

    Sports

    DHS plays undefeated Pacers Friday night

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

     
    Blue Devil girls net an easy win at Grant

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Aggie offense A-OK; now what about defense?

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    In Davis, rugby is as American as apple pie

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

     
     
    Niemi’s 43 saves aren’t enough in loss to Wild

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    Calling all artists for upcoming show

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

     
    ‘Birdman': A dark comedy that soars

    By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11

     
    DHS Madrigals host singing workshop

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12

     
    Marcia Ball to play at The Palms

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    Big, capable luxury defines Yukon

    By Ann M. Job | From Page: A5 | Gallery

     
    .

    Obituaries

    Joseph Francis Gray

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Friday, October 31, 2014

    By Creator | From Page: B6

     
    .

    Real Estate Review

    Featured Listing

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER1

    Professional Services Directory

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER2

    Lyon Real Estate

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER3

    RE/Max Gold

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER4

    Kim Eichorn

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER5

    Susan von Geldern

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER6

    Team Traverso

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER6

    Yolo FCU

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER6

    Juan Ramirez

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER6

    Tracy Harris

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER7

    Susan von Geldern

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER7

    Wells Fargo Home Mortgage

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER8

    Julie Leonard

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER8

    Joe Kaplan

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER9

    Melrina A Maggiora

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER9

    Coldwell Banker

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER10

    Leslie Blevins

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER12

    Julie Partain

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER12

    Robin Garland

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER13

    Jamie Madison

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER13

    Diane Lardelli

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER13

    Karen Waggoner

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER14

    Jamie Madison & Associates

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER14

    Lisa Haass

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER14

    Ciana Wallace

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER15

    Travis Credit Union

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER16

    Malek Baroody

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER17

    Marcelo Campos

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER18

    F1rst Street Real Estate

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: RER20