Does your home suffer from too much heat during scorching Sacramento summers? Consider planting a shade tree.
October and November are ideal for tree planting in Sacramento. Cooler weather and early rain help young trees put down roots and get off to a strong start. (That’s called getting established.)
The Sacramento Tree Foundation and the Sacramento Municipal Utility District offer free trees through their Sacramento Shade program. Mature trees can cut home cooling costs during hot summer months by as much as 40 percent. This program offers fast-growing (and usually drought-tolerant) tree varieties with the best chance for success in our area. For details, call (916) 924-8733 or visit www.smud.org.
▪ Elsewhere in the garden, think about spring. Plant daffodils and other bulbs now. To extend the blooms in March and April, plant bulbs every two weeks through December.
▪ Mulch spring bulb beds as well as summer bulbs and tubers left in the ground. Chopped-up dried leaves work well as mulch.
▪ Snails and slugs are hungry. Hand-pick them at night before they feast on your garden.
▪ Harvest pumpkins, melons, hard squash, peppers and tomatoes.
▪ Plant garlic and onions. Transplant cool-weather vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage and kale.
▪ Transplant cool-weather bedding plants including calendula, pansy, snapdragon, primrose and viola.