Recycling and waste pickup in Sacramento will soon be as simple as "A" or "B."
Starting Monday, the city of Sacramento officially switches over to its new collection schedule. Residents will be assigned a pickup day for recyclables, which will be collected every other week. The program starts the first week of July with "A" households. The second week will be "B" households.
That "A" or "B" designation should have been part of your June utility bill. That information is also available online at www.sacrecycle.org or by calling the city hotline at 311.
In addition, the familiar "claw" will disappear from city streets except for winter leaf collection, November through January, and special pickups by appointment. Instead, residents will be required to deposit their yard and green waste into separate bins for weekly collection. (Regular trash will be picked up weekly, too.)
Residents may schedule one free pickup of large junk items or yard waste annually between February and October. Those appointments also can be made online at SacRecycle.org or by calling 311.
Think you'll forget your recycle day? Get a text alert or email reminder from the city. Sign up online at that same website.
Keep your vegetable garden watered, mulched and weeded. Water before 8 a.m. to reduce chances of fungal infection and to conserve moisture.
It's not too late to get a few more veggies in the ground. Plant seeds for corn, lima beans, green beans, okra, parsnips, pumpkin, summer and winter squash and watermelon.
Harvest vegetables promptly to encourage plants to produce more. Squash especially tends to grow rapidly in hot weather; keep an eye on the zucchini!
In the flower garden, plant seeds for alyssum, celosia, marigolds, periwinkles, sunflowers and zinnias.
Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushy plants and more flowers in September.
Cut back Shasta daisies after flowering to promote a second bloom in fall.
Feed camellias, azaleas and other acid-loving plants. Make sure to water well before fertilizing.