Things to do in Sacramento and Beyond

The Bee's guide to events, activities, arts and entertainment


June 21, 2013
Natomas Rose Garden gets new fountain in time for party

natomasrose2.jpg Natomas Rose Garden's party will go on - with a new fountain as its centerpiece.

Pottery World in Rocklin donated a new 6-foot ceramic fountain to replace the one destroyed by vandals June 10 at the garden, adjacent to the South Natomas Community Center.

According to volunteer coordinator Marni Leger, the new fountain was dropped off by Ray Sicotte and Don Noyes of Pottery World, shown here with the large fixture. The fountain will be hooked up and in place by June 30, the original date of a planned fountain dedication and garden dance party.

That party appeared in doubt when volunteers discovered the original fountain toppled and an estimated $5,000 in damage to the garden.

But now the party will go on as planned, Leger said. The public is invited to the fountain dedication at 6 p.m. Sunday, June 30, followed by a tango dance with music and instruction led by Michelle Gorre. The event is free, but donations will be welcome.

A popular site for weddings and other celebrations, the all-volunteer Natomas Rose Garden is located at 2921 Truxel Road, Sacramento, next to the South Natomas Library. For more details, click on www.natomasrosegarden.org or call (916) 808-1571.

June 5, 2013
Sacramento's River-Friendly Inspiration Garden makes debut

coreopsis.jpg Sacramento's newest water-wise garden makes its debut Thursday morning.

At 10 a.m., local officials will celebrate the grand opening of Sacramento County's "River Friendly Inspiration Garden," adjacent to the water treatment facility on Waterman Road.

A federal Environmental Protection Agency Climate Showcase Community Grant helped make the garden grow.

"Sacramento County was one of only 50 communities selected out of over 750 applicants to receive funding as a Climate Showcase Community," said Karen Irwin of the EPA's Region 9. "They were recognized for their innovative project that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, provide additional economic, environmental, and quality of life benefits, and inspire other communities to action."

Partners in the project included Sacramento County's Departments of Water Resources, Transportation and Regional Parks, University of California's Cooperative Extension and Sacramento County master gardeners, the Regional Water Authority, Ecolandscape California and the River-Friendly Landscaping Coalition.

The garden is a living example of how smart use of low-water use plants and landscaping techniques can benefit both the environment - and your wallet.

"When you come to the River Friendly Inspiration Garden and take some of our ideas home to use in your own gardens, you are teaching your children about the beautiful results we can achieve when we take a few simple steps to protect our environment," said county supervisor Jimmy Yee.

The garden is located on Waterman Road at Westray Drive, just north of Calvine Road. For Thursday's event, additional parking is available at Cochran Park.

May 21, 2013
Want to grow your own veggies? Join a community garden

goliathtomato.JPG Want to plant a vegetable garden but have no space (or sun)? Join Sacramento's community gardens.

"There's still plenty of time to get a plot and plant!" said Bill Maynard, Sacramento's community garden coordinator. "It makes a great summer activity for families."

The annual cost ranges from $25 to $75, depending on garden location. Maynard offers free seeds for new members, too.

If you'd like more details, contact Maynard at wmaynard@cityofsacramento.org or call (916) 808-4943.

Currently, there are plots open for Sacramento residents at:

- Bill Bean Jr. Park Community Garden (7400 17th Ave., Sacramento);

- Camellia Park Community Garden (6650 Cougar Drive, Southeast Sacramento);

- Martin Luther King Jr. Community Garden (3668 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. at 12th Avenue, Oak Park);

- Sparrow Community Garden (3219 Sparrow Dr., Northwest Natomas);

- Strauch Park Community Garden (3075 Northstead Drive, South Natomas)

- Valley Hi Park Community Garden (8185 Center Parkway, South Sacramento); and

- Lutheran Church of the Redeemer (4641 Marconi Ave., Sacramento).

May 16, 2013
Tickets to Saturday's SacMod home tour selling fast

sacmod.jpg In Sacramento, mid-century modern is a hot seller. Tickets are going fast for Saturday's second Sacramento Mid-Century Modern Tour, featuring seven homes and dozens of points of interest.

"We'll have some limited tickets available the day of the tour on a first come, first served basis," said Gretchen Steinberg, one of the tour organizers.

Tickets on the day of the tour will be priced at $40 for the general public, $30 for SacMod members, Steinberg said.

The tour is limited to 1,000 tickets, Steinberg noted. SacMod's inaugural tour in 2011 sold out.

Registration starts at 9:30 a.m. at the tour's hub, Sacramento Executive Airport, 6151 Freeport Blvd., Sacramento. People can sign up through 2:30 p.m. - but tickets likely will not last that long.

Also at the airport, a car show featuring vintage 1950s and 1960s vehicles starts at 9 a.m. Saturday. At that same site, several displays highlighting Sacramento's mid-century modern architecture and history will be open during the tour. Admission to the car show and exhibits are free.

The tour runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. For more details, click on .

May 8, 2013
America's most organized woman shares her secrets

HPIM0285 (1).JPG Author and organizational expert Deniece Schofield, known as "America's most organized woman," visits the Sacramento area this week to teach her secrets to organizational success.

During her workshops, Schofield will focus on "finding more space without throwing everything away," she said. Designed for homemakers and families, her no-nonense methods concentrate on time- and space-saving shortcuts to bring order out of everyday chaos.

Admission is $25; no reservations necessary. The sessions will be held at 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Thursday at Orchid Suites, 130 N. Sunrise Ave., Roseville; and 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Friday at the Holiday Inn, 11269 Point East Drive, Rancho Cordova. For more details, click on www.denieceschofield.com or call (800) 835-8463.

March 20, 2013
SF Flower Show opens with world's largest succulent globe

Worlds Largest Succulent Globe.jpg Spring arrives today with a new spin on gardening at the San Francisco Flower and Garden Show at the San Mateo Event Center.

Centerpiece for the mammoth show - the third largest flower show in the nation - is the world's largest succulent globe.

This green planet fits this year's theme, "Gardening Makes the World Go Round." Created by the show's staff and Succulent Gardens nursery in Castroville, this living planet spins at a 23-degree angle - just like Earth - but completes a rotation in 30 seconds, not 24 hours.

This is no garden-variety container planting. The 14-foot-tall globe weighs 2,800 pounds and measures more than 32 feet in circumference. It took more than 30,000 succulent cuttings to create its surface. They've been growing in place for more than seven months.

In addition, the event showcases 18 internationally themed gardens and offers 90 seminars and workshops. More than 300 vendors are part of the marketplace. There also is a large activity area for children. Celebrity chefs will demonstrate garden to table recipes.

The San Mateo Event Center is located at 1346 Saratoga Drive, San Mateo. Show hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday.

Admission: $20; seniors, age 65 and up, $18; children 16 and under admitted free; parking, $12.

Questions? Click on www.sfgardenshow.com or call (888) 695-0888.

March 1, 2013
Sacramento Home and Garden Show opens today at Cal Expo

fredhoffman.jpg Get inspired for a busy spring at the 32nd annual Sacramento Home and Garden Show, which opens at noon today at Cal Expo for a weekend run.

Attracting thousands of patrons, this show emphasizes renovation and renewal with hundreds of exhibitors and vendors. Among the guest speakers are radio host Farmer Fred Hoffman (pictured), who will answer garden questions from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Sunday, and "Lighting Geek" Tommy Herren.

Billed as Sacramento's "original home show," this event packs three buildings at Cal Expo, located at 1600 Exposition Blvd., Sacramento.

Show hours are noon to 6 p.m. today, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Admission is $7; children age 12 and under admitted free. Bring a can of food and save $1 off adult ticket price with the donation to the Sacramento Food Bank.

For complete details and exhibitor list, click on www.sachomeandgardenshow.net.

February 28, 2013
Gardening and crafts for a busy Saturday in Sacramento area

Green Acres Dig Into Spring Event, features vendors and free seminars with topics that include canning, soil, fruit and citrus trees. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday. Green Acres, 205 Serpa Way, Folsom. Free. (916) 673-9290.

Button Bazzar 2013, The Sacramento Button Club hosts a collectible clothing button show and sale from dealers from around the country. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, Carmichael Community Club House, 5750 Grant Ave., Carmichael. Free. (916) 489-1785.

Hundreds of blooming cymbidium orchids will be for sale at the Sacramento Valley Cymbidium Society's annual show and sale. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Shepard Garden and Arts Center, 3330 McKinley Blvd., Sacramento. Free. (916) 421-9615.

Spring Fling Craft Show is a boutique-style show featuring handmade gifts and holiday decorations. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Penryn Masonic Lodge, 7201 Colony Way, Penryn. Free. (916) 726-1672.

February 22, 2013
Kids can learn quilting in Folsom

Register by March 1 for Quilt Day for Kids, sponsored by the Folsom Quilt and Fiber Guild.

The event is a chance for elementary-age children to participate in a variety of hands-on quilt projects, including designing and making a quilt block.

9 a.m.-noon, March 2. Journey Church, 450 Blue Ravine Road, Folsom. Free. (916) 600-4150; www.folsomquilt.org/education.html

January 11, 2013
Sac Antique Faire's move delayed

By Debbie Arrington
darrington@sacbee.com

The giant Sacramento Antique Faire, the monthly marketplace for all things collectible, is staying put - at least for two more months.

Sunday's faire will be held as usual from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. under the freeway at X and 21st streets in midtown Sacramento.

A planned January move to Front Street has been delayed, said marketplace director Marylon Rose. Heavy equipment sitting on that site has yet to be moved.

January 4, 2013
Free admission today at Cal State Home and Garden Show

katkowsky.jpgStart the new year with fresh ideas and a bargain: Free admission today at the California State Home and Garden Show.

The three-day show opens at noon today at the Sacramento Convention Center, 1400 J St., Sacramento. Show hours are noon to 7 p.m. today, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

On the weekend, admission is $7; youth age 16 and under admitted free. (Find a $2 discount coupon in the Sacramento Bee or online at the show's official website.)

Featured at this year's show is author and remodeling expert Steven Katkowsky, who will share his budget-minded and space-saving secrets. He gives three presentations each day including "Going in Style: Turning the bathroom that everyone has into the bathroom everyone wants." That's at 3 p.m. today and again at noon Saturday and 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

For more details, click on www.calstatehomeshow.com.

November 30, 2012
Rain or shine, Sacred Heart Holiday Home Tour starts today

Regardless of weather, the home tour must go on.

"Rain or shine, we're open," said Kris Quigley, among the organizers of the 39th annual Sacred Heart Holiday Home Tour, which started its three-day run today. "There's been so much work put in by our designers and home owners, there's no way we could postpone. Hopefully, the rain will let up a bit and people will still come out."

Featuring five elegantly decorated homes in East Sacramento's Fabulous Forties neighborhood, the tour usually attracts more than 5,000 patrons. This weekend, its organizers had to add rain gear to its preparations.

"Bring your umbrella - we're ready," Quigley said. "We've got booties you can slip on over your shoes and take with you to the other homes."

A major fund-raiser for Sacred Heart Parish School, the tour continues until 8 p.m. tonight. The homes also will be open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Tickets are $30 and available at the tour's booth on 38th Street between J and M streets or online at www.sacredhearthometour.com. Or call (916) 556-5050.

October 18, 2012
Capital Nursery hosts Elk Grove food truck fest tonight

Food trucks, music and garden talk? Capital Nursery celebrates fall with that unusual combination from 5 to 8 p.m. tonight at its Elk Grove nursery, 8423 Elk Grove Blvd.

Called Capital Nursery's Food Truck Mania, the event will feature such popular food trucks as Drewski's Hot Rod Kitchen, Coast to Coast Sandwiches, Smoothie Patrol, Knucklehead Hot Dog Diner and Crave American Tacos.

Admission is free. For more details or directions, click on www.capitalnursery.com or call (916) 684-2100.

August 22, 2012
Want free backyard makeover? 'Yardcore' casting on Saturday

Would you like a complete backyard makeover - for free? The makers of the popular DIY Network show, "Yardcore," will be cruising the aisles Saturday morning of Sacramento's Green Acres, looking for homeowners in need of a brand new backyard.

The landscaping brother team of Jake and Joel Moss will do the makeover later this year. But here's the catch: They work on intuition.

According to coordinating producer Wendi Fontes, the Moss brothers never meet the homeowners until they are ready to reveal the makeover. Instead, they spend five minutes alone inside the chosen home, gathering clues about its owners' lifestyle and design preferences.

"Jake and Joel come up with the design during an unsupervised visit with only cameras in tow as they inspect the home and exterior for clues about what the homeowners would really dig in the way of a new backyard," Fontes explained. "The homeowners get sent away to a hotel and Jake and Joel return with crew and materials to create a brand-new outdoor space in two days. Homeowners and the brothers finally meet when it's time to reveal the finished yard."

The "Yardcore" casting call will take place from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at Green Acres Nursery, 8501 Jackson Road, Sacramento.

For more details or directions, click on www.idiggreenacres.com or call (916) 381-1625.

July 27, 2012
See bug-eating plants at Sacramento show

Some plants can turn the table on bugs - they "eat" them.

Find plants with a real difference this weekend at the 42nd annual Sacramento Bromeliad and Carnivorous Plant Society Show and Sale at McKinley Park's Shepard Garden and Arts Center. Admission and parking are free.

See hundreds of colorful bromeliads, unusual tropical plants that range from pineapple to "air plants" that grow in trees.

But it's the bug-eating carnivorous plants that attract an audience, especially among children fascinated by these well-adapted and healthy examples.

"Many plant varieties (at the show) are not seen in any other place in Northern California," said the society's Eric Trygg. "There will be educational displays on carnivorous plants, and members of the society will be on hand to answer questions and provide tips on growing both families of plants."

Take some plants home, too. The event includes a wide selection of both bromeliads and bug-eaters for sale.

"Most of the sale plants cannot be found in nurseries and will provide a colorful and easy-to-grow addition to your garden or plant collection," Trygg said.

Show hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Shepard Garden and Arts Center is located at 3330 McKinley Blvd., Sacramento.

July 5, 2012
Help Land Park look good with volunteer corps

Get some exercise and help William Land Park look good.

Saturday morning, the Land Park Volunteer Corps will pull weeds, trim bushes, clean ponds and spread mulch in its efforts to revitalize Sacramento's huge city park.

Maintenance of the 167-acre park, located off Sutterville Road and Freeport Boulevard, has been challenged by budget and staff cuts. Once a month, the volunteer corps steps in to help make up for shortfalls in care of the park's plants and 25 picnic areas.

"Weeds are popping up along curbs throughout the park," said Craig Powell, the corps' lead coordinator. "We have seven projects lined up this month, including two tree sucker-weeding crews who will be aggressively tackling curbside weeds.

"We'll also be doing a 'Monster Bush Trim' along 13th Avenue between Land Park Drive and Freeport, bed maintenance in several spots, cleaning all three ponds, mulching and more."

The volunteers will meet at 8 a.m. in the picnic grounds directly behind Fairytale Town. They'll regroup for lunch at 11 a.m.

"The weather should be ideal Saturday morning," Powell added, noting that the forecast predicts highs in the mid-90s.

New volunteers are welcome. Bring work gloves.

For more details, contact Powell at (916) 718-3030 or by e-mail at ckpinsacto@aol.com.

June 27, 2012
Do you have 'Most Embarrassing Living Room in America'?

Does your living room make you cringe? Are you ashamed of its tackiness, outdated furnishings and clutter? Do you avoid house guests so they won't see just how awful one room can be?

If so, you may have a winner. HGTV and HGTV magazine are looking for "The Most Embarrassing Living Room in America." The winner gets more than national cringing rights - they'll get a living room makeover worth $25,000.

Meg Caswell, host of "Meg's Great Rooms," will personally handle the transformation of the offending room. But applicants need to hustle with their entries. Deadline is 2 p.m. PDT July 12.

To enter, e-mail your contact information including city of residence, a description of your living room, photos and a video of yourself and your space to: livingroomcasting@gmail.com

The video may clinch the title.

"We especially want to see video of you and the room, so grab your camera or smart phone and prove you have the most awful, outdated, embarrassing living room ever!" said associate producer Dave Scheller, who is helping coordinate the search.

June 22, 2012
Daylily Days celebrates summer blooms in Amador County

Get your summer off to a flower-filled start during the 16th annual Daylily Days in Plymouth.

Held this weekend at Amador Flower Farm, Daylily Days celebrates the 14-acre farm's plentiful crop of daylilies. Located in the heart of Amador County's wine country, the farm grows more than 1,000 varieties of the colorful perennial.

Free tram tours make it easy to tour the farm's long rows of daylilies and see millions of blooms. In addition during this special free event, visitors can take part in hourly gardening demonstrations and get expert advice from Amador County master gardeners.

There also will be a summer fruit tasting Saturday, hosted by Dave Wilson Nursery, and tastings of olive oil and gourmet jams, salsa and sauces both days.

Food booths will be available or bring a picnic lunch to enjoy under the farm's massive oaks. Daylily Days will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Amador Flower Farm is located at 22001 Shenandoah School Road, Plymouth. For more details or directions, click on www.amadorflowerfarm.com or call (209) 245-6660.

June 14, 2012
Veggies won't grow? Ask master gardeners for help

Why won't your veggies grow? What's that bug (and is it good or bad)? How do I get bigger tomatoes?

On Saturday morning, UC masters gardeners will be out in force and ready to answer all sorts of garden-related questions during Open Garden Day at the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center in Fair Oaks Park, 11549 Fair Oaks Blvd., Fair Oaks. Admission is free.

From 8:30 to 11:30 a.m., the master gardeners will be demonstrating some of the finer points of summer fruit and vegetable gardening. That includes summer fruit tree pruning, T-bud grafting, using herbs as a lawn alternative and how to care for grapevines.

But their expertise makes this event a big opportunity to solve plant puzzles. Got a mystery plant or pest? Bring a sample (in a sealed plastic bag) for identification and suggested remedies if needed.

For more details, click on http://cesacramento.ucdavis.edu or call (916) 875-6913.

June 1, 2012
Sunset Celebration becomes destination for devoted readers

Thousands of Sunset magazine readers will converge this weekend on the headquarters of their favorite magazine for the annual Sunset Celebration Weekend.

Billed as "the pages of Sunset come to life," the home and garden festival features scores of demonstrations and seminars emphasizing the best of western living. Among the presenters are celebrity chef Guy Fieri, cookbook author Tom Douglas, Sacramento landscape designer Ahmed Hassan and Sunset's editors and staff.

Shop "Secondhand Sunset" for great buys on items used in magazine photo sessions. Don't miss the "Ultimate Outdoor Living Room."

Sunset magazine headquarters are located at 80 Willow Road, Menlo Park. Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Admission is $16; seniors age 60 and up, $14; children age 12 and under admitted free. For parking, directions, seminar schedule and more, click on www.sunset.com and follow the links to "Celebration Weekend." Or call (800) 786-7375.

May 31, 2012
Volunteers to tackle Land Park clean-up on Saturday

Help your public park and get some exercise, too.

On Saturday morning, the Land Park Volunteer Corps will tackle several jobs at Sacramento's largest city park.

"We have a number of important projects lined up, including our always impressive 'Monster Bush Trim,' a major planter bed clean-up, pond skimming, sucker patrol, litter patrol, island mulching and more," said lead coordinator Craig Powell. "It should be a lovely Saturday morning to work in the park."

Volunteers will check in at 8 a.m. Saturday in the picnic area behind the park's Fairytale Town, 3901 Land Park Drive, Sacramento. Coffee and refreshments will be available. After pulling weeds and spreading mulch, the group will break for lunch at the same spot at 11 a.m.

New volunteers are welcome. Bring gloves. Some tools will be available. For more details, contact Powell at ckpinsacto@aol.com or (916) 718-3030.

May 24, 2012
Natomas Rose Garden hosts mixer, seeks business

Business will be blooming this evening at Sacramento's newest public rose garden.

From 5:30 to 7 p.m., the Natomas Rose Garden will host members of the Natomas Chamber of Commerce at a business mixer. Besides an opportunity for networking, the setting will try to sell itself with hundreds of roses in full bloom.

Located at 2921 Truxel Road, the garden is adjacent to the South Natomas Library and Community Center and was designed to host outdoor events, such as weddings, parties and community get-togethers.

Staffed by all volunteers, the Natomas Rose Garden debuted in May 2008 with sections dedicated to veterans and historical roses. The garden features more than 500 bushes.

For rental information, call (916) 808-1571 or click on www.natomasrosegarden.org.

May 23, 2012
See Sacramento modern masterpiece during SacMod home tour

See a mid-century modern gem during a special home tour, hosted by Sacramento Modern.

On June 2, the Roush residence - one of Sacramento's most original and unusual homes - will be open to the public. Built in 1954 in Arden Oaks, the house was designed by Terry Waters, who studied and worked with Frank Lloyd Wright, John Launter and Walter S. White.

Robert Roush, the home's original owner, founded Roush Bakery Products, best known for its Hillbilly bread.

Tickets for the home tour are $45 and must be ordered in advance. Deadline is May 31. To keep the tour from overwhelming the home, tickets will be assigned in time blocks from 1 to 5 p.m. To order, click on http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/244435

Half the proceeds will go towards an upcoming California Museum exhibit showcasing the work of Sacramento native Ray Eames, among the most influential modernists.

Led by local architects and designers, the SacMod home tour includes appetizers and beverages, music, a commemorative booklet, vintage displays and photographs of the home. A restored 1956 Nash Ambassador Custom will be parked in the carport.

For more on SacMod and the home tour, visit http://sacmcmhometour.blogspot.com/.

May 22, 2012
Roberts to speak at Quarryhill's 'silver' spring garden party

Celebrate spring in Sonoma and a quarter century of garden building June 2 at Quarryhill Botanical Garden.

Located in Glen Ellen, the famous Asian-themed garden marks its silver anniversary with a "Spring Celebration" luncheon.

Warren Roberts, superintendent emeritus of the UC Davis' arboretum, will serve as keynote speaker, sharing his favorite adventures as a plantsman.

Overlooking vineyards and built on the site of old rock quarries in the Mayacamas foothills, Quarryhill is home to one of the largest American collections of wild-sourced Asian plants, including hundreds of oaks, maples, magnolias, dogwoods, lilies and roses.

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., the celebration includes bento box lunch, silent auction and plant sale. Visitors also will get a chance to take docent-led tours of the 20-acre garden in full bloom.

Tickets for the celebration are $45 for Quarryhill members, $55 for non-members. Reservations are required.

Also in honor of its 25 years, Quarryhill offers free admission on the 25th of each month, including free self-guided tours. May's free admission day is Friday.

Quarryhill Botanical Garden is located at 12841 Sonoma Highway, Glen Ellen. For tickets and other details, call (707) 996-3166 or visit www.quarryhillbg.org.

May 18, 2012
Spend 'A Day on the Farm' with Soil Born on Sunday

Take the family to the farm in the city Sunday during Soil Born Farms' annual "A Day on the Farm."

With something for every member of the family, this kid-friendly event features cooking classes, workshops, nature walks, local arts and crafts, children's activities, music, food, native plant sale, farm stand and more.

Among the workshop topics are raising chickens and beekeeping.

Soil Born Farms' American River Ranch is located at 2140 Chase Drive, Rancho Cordova. The fun starts at 10 a.m. and runs through 4 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $5.

For more details, click on www.soilborn.org or call (916) 363-9685.

May 18, 2012
Ask a Green Gardener Day offers water-saving advice

Interested in having a more sustainable backyard, but don't know where to start? Here's your chance to get free expert advice.

Saturday is Ask a Green Gardener Day, a local event that invites area residents to learn how to have a water-efficient, pesticide-free yard - and a beautiful flower-filled garden, too. Experts also will have advice for organic vegetable gardening for both beginners and longtime gardeners.

Seven local nurseries will take part:

- Big Oak Nursery, 10071 Grant Line Road, Elk Grove. Hours: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

- Bushnell Gardens Nursery, 5420 Douglas Blvd., Granite Bay. Hours: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

- Fair Oaks Boulevard Nursery, 4681 Fair Oaks Blvd., Sacramento. Hours: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

- Front Yard Nursery, 5801 Mother Lode Drive, Placerville. Hours: 10 a.m.-noon.

- The Flower Farm, 4150 Auburn Folsom Road, Loomis. Hours: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

- Green Acres Nursery & Supply, 901 Galleria Blvd., Roseville; 8501 Jackson Road, Sacramento; and 205 Serpa Way, Folsom. Hours: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

- UC Davis Arboretum teaching nursery, 920 Garrod Drive, Davis. Hours: 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

In addition, the UC Davis Arboretum will be hosting its season-end clearance sale at the nursery with sizzling deals on summer bloomers during those same hours.

For more information on Ask a Green Gardener Day or other water-saving tips, click on www.BeWaterSmart.info.

May 11, 2012
McKinley Park, East Sac host flower-filled festivities

McKinley Park and the surrounding neighborhood will be bustling with garden lovers Saturday as the hub of three events.

Starting at 10 a.m., volunteers and officials will gather at the historic Frederick N. Evans Memorial Rose Garden for its reopening ceremony. Hosted by Friends of East Sacramento, the re-dedication begins at 10:30 a.m. and will feature the release of white doves, music and light refreshments. The public is welcome to attend the free event.

With more than 1,150 roses, the 83-year-old rose garden has been closed since last fall for major renovations including the installation of a new irrigation system, new walkways and other improvements to make the garden more accessible to visitors. The rose garden is located on H Street between Alhambra Boulevard and 33rd Street.

Meanwhile, the Sacramento Geranium Society is hosting its annual show and sale from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the park's Shepard Garden and Arts Center, located at 3330 McKinley Blvd., Sacramento. This free show features hundreds of geraniums and their close cousins, pelargoniums. Many unusual varieties will be offered for sale.

Also on Saturday, seven outstanding residential gardens will be open to the public during the 14th annual East Sacramento Garden Tour. A fund-raiser for the David Lubin Elementary School, the tour starts at the school, 3535 M St., and winds through the Fabulous Forties neighborhood. A boutique also will be held at the school's multipurpose room from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Tickets for the tour are $25. Too busy on Saturday? The tour also will be held on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. as a Mother's Day treat. Learn more at www.eastsacgardentour.com.

May 8, 2012
Get free admission Friday on National Public Gardens Day

They're green, growing and ready resources of both information and relaxation. Now is a great time to check out these living libraries for ideas, too.

Friday is National Public Gardens Day, when scores of great gardens will welcome visitors with special events.

"They're a rich source of ideas," said Paul James, HGTV's "Gardener Guy" and national spokesman for public gardens. "A lot of what you see has obvious impact in your own garden. You can see what grows under the shade of an oak tree, how to edge a garden bed, create a pathway or an effective mix of plants. And 99 percent of the time, the plants are clearly labeled."

April 27, 2012
Spring fever? Find cure at Asparagus Fest, home tours

Get out and enjoy warm spring weather this weekend. There's no shortage of special events that will make the most of it.

Celebrating a home-grown green bonanza, the Stockton Asparagus Festival opens today in downtown Stockton. Many of the festivities at this famous food fest will be held at the Stockton Marina district. Park at Stockton Arena, 248 W. Fremont St., Stockton.

Featuring many ways to eat asparagus as well as music, carnival rides and entertainment, the family-oriented festival runs from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. today through Sunday.

April 26, 2012
New Fine Living Expo opens Friday in downtown Sacramento

Find inspiration for your summer home and garden projects this week at the new Cal State Fine Living Expo, which opens Friday at the Sacramento Convention Center.

The new three-day show features an eclectic mix of lifestyle attractions as well as traditional home and garden experts. You'll find cooking demonstrations, wine tasting, live music and a display of vintage travel trailers.

Gardeners will enjoy the expo's display gardens and vendors with plants and supplies. You'll also see the latest in outdoor kitchens, patio furniture and spas.

April 20, 2012
Tropical splendor on display at Sacramento orchid show

Find a taste of paradise without leaving Sacramento. This weekend, the Sacramento Orchid Society hosts its 65th annual show and sale at the Scottish Rite Center, 6151 H St., Sacramento.

One of the largest floral events in the area, this Sacramento show features thousands of orchids in glorious bloom plus everything you need to keep them looking great. Demonstrations and free seminars cover care and how to make plants re-bloom.

The show will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Admission is $6; children under age 16 admitted free with adult. For more details, click on http://sacramentoorchids.org or call (916) 489-3263.

April 19, 2012
Get your tomato plants today at American River sale

While enjoying this warm weather, get a jump on your summer garden with the help of students at American River College.

From noon to 6 p.m. today, the ARC Horticulture Department is hosting a spring plant sale, featuring hundreds of heirloom tomato, pepper and other vegetable transplants. Also featured are annual flowers and - for folks you just can't wait for blooms - flower arrangements.

All plants were grown by ARC students and all proceeds benefit the college's horticulture department. Admission is free; parking is $1.

American River College is located at 4700 College Oak Drive, Sacramento. The sale will be held in the horticulture area on the northeast side of campus, south of Myrtle Avenue behind the auto body shop.

Questions? Call (916) 484-8539 or click on http://web.arc.losrios.edu/~hort.

April 17, 2012
Sacramento master gardeners host Open Garden Wednesday

Take a mid-week garden break and get ready for spring.

The Sacramento County master gardeners will host an Open Garden Day from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday at the Fair Oaks Horticulture Center in Fair Oaks Park, 11549 Fair Oaks Blvd., Fair Oaks.

While tending their garden, the master gardeners will be available to answer questions about growing vegetables, fruit, grapes and berries, flowers and more.

Find out about backyard pests and tips for growing great tomatoes. The best part: It's free.

For more details or directions, call (916) 875-6913 or click on http://cesacramento.ucdavis.edu.

March 30, 2012
Go native in Sacramento, Yolo with Gardens Gone Wild tour

Native plants - many in spectacular bloom - will be the focus of an early spring garden tour Saturday, hosted by the Sacramento Valley Chapter of the California Native Plant Society.

Called "Gardens Gone Wild," the free self-guided driving tour will visit several gardens in Sacramento and Yolo counties as well as such landmarks as Sacramento's Historic City Cemetery's perennial-packed Hamilton Square.

Besides at least 50 percent native plants, the tour stops feature xeriscaping and edible landscaping as well as water gardens and flowers that attract birds and bees. Experts from CNPS will be on hand to point out special attractions and answer questions.

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., patrons can take the tour at their own pace and in their own order, but they must register first to get the map and directions. To sign up, send an email to gardensgonenative@gmail.com.

For more details, click on www.SacValleyCNPS.org.

March 29, 2012
Plant sale will put Sacramento gardeners in spring mood

Spring is here - and so is spring fever. Gardeners want to get outside and get to work.

With rain forecast for Saturday, that gardening urge can find refuge at the 11th annual Vendor Sale, hosted by the Sacramento Perennial Plant Club. To be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, this huge sale features several vendors with unusual plants including succulents, bamboo, natives and new introductions from Blooms of Bressingham. Shoppers also will find great gardening gear and supplies.

Gary Doerr, president of Blooms of Bressingham, will speak at noon about his company's worldwide search for new plants and the people who create them. Many of Bressingham's finds have come from amateur hybridizers or hobbyists.

The sale will be held at the Shepard Garden and Arts Center, 3330 McKinley Blvd., Sacramento. Admission is free.

For more details, click on www. sacramentoperennialplantclub.com.

March 22, 2012
See 'green' ideas at SF Flower and Garden Show

Get into the spring spirit with the biggest flower and garden show in Northern California.

Through Sunday, the San Francisco Flower and Garden Show is in full bloom at the San Mateo County Events Center, 1346 Saratoga Drive, San Mateo.

With the theme "Gardens for a Green Earth," 20 display gardens - created by award-winning designers - will showcase how to be sustainable with style.

March 21, 2012
Updated: McKinley Park rose garden to reopen soon

McKinley Park's beloved rose garden is growing closer to its reopening - just in time for wedding season.

The week of April 15 is when the city plans to take down the fence surrounding the garden since September. The garden's first two weddings of 2012 are scheduled for April 21.

The official reopening is now planned for May 12, the day before Mother's Day, according to Cecily Hastings of Friends of East Sacramento. Her group recently signed an agreement with the City of Sacramento to take over the garden's care and event scheduling.

Originally planted in 1928, the Frederick Evans Memorial Rose Garden - located on H Street near Alhambra Boulevard - has been closed for major renovations for seven months. With a pricetag of about $240,000, the improvements include: an accessible walkway, new automatic irrigation system, planter curbs, a drinking fountain, a rose garden map, accessible parking spaces and refurbished benches.

City parks officials had hoped to reopen the garden in February. But the project was delayed by problems with the new irrigation system, according to Ellie Longanecker, co-founder of Friends of the McKinley Park Rose Garden. Also, new sod paths needed more time to take root.

The 1.5-acre garden features more than 1,000 rose bushes. Volunteers planted hundreds of new bushes during the renovation.

Friends of East Sacramento plans additional work to the garden, Hastings said.

The rose garden is a favorite Sacramento site for weddings and outdoor seasonal events. A new website - www.mckinleyparkcenter.org - will be launched April 7 to handle event bookings, she said.

March 16, 2012
Due to storms, soggy Daffodil Hill delays opening day

Rainy weather put a damper on Daffodil Hill. This week's storms have delayed the opening of the Amador County landmark until sometime next week.

Originally, the famous McLaughlin Ranch in Volcano planned to open its gates today for its 72nd daffodil season. But too much rain made its paths slippery, muddy and dangerous.

"Due to the storms we are currently experiencing, we had to postpone our opening," said the ranch's recorded message on its daffodil hotline. "We hope to open when the weather dries out next week."

Flower fans are encouraged to call the hotline for updates after Monday: (209) 296-7048.

Weather permitting, Daffodil Hill's season extends into early April. Once open, hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily seven days a week. But always call before driving the two hours from Sacramento. For safety reasons, the garden is closed during rainy weather.

Considered the No. 1 tourist destination in Amador County, Daffodil Hill features about a half million blooms in more than 300 varieties squeezed into six acres. The Ryan family, descendents of the original owners dating back to the 1800s, add thousands of bulbs each fall.

Admission and parking are free, but donations are welcome. No pets are allowed.

Located about 50 miles from Sacramento, Daffodil Hill is at 18310 Rams Horn Grade, Volcano. For directions and more, click on www.amadorcountychamber.com and follow the links to Daffodil Hill under "Historic Attractions."



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