A New Year for Gardening — Master Gardeners of Yolo January events

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By Denise Cottrell
Master Gardener of Yolo County

For some gardeners, the winter of the new year brings new resolve. It is a time to look back at the successes and failures, ask questions, and plan again. What plants are thriving in your garden? What is struggling? And what do you do next? Gardening is a science experiment. You observe your plants, question why one plant grows, and another doesn’t, or find yourself asking what pest is eating this. You form a hypothesis, develop an explanation for observing, and then test your hypothesis. And results, as every gardener knows, may vary.

Gardeners do not need to keep guessing. Contact the UCCE Master Gardeners of Yolo County for research-based information for all your gardening questions and needs. From fruit trees to house plants, the Master Gardeners of Yolo County aid home gardeners through free publications, classes, plant sales, and more. Events are open to the public at no cost. Listed below are the educational events scheduled for January 2023. If one requires additional information about a Master Gardeners — Yolo event, visit the website mgyolo@ucanr.edu or call 530-666-8737.

If you wish to talk to a Master Gardener in person and ask questions, head to West Sacramento, on Saturday, Jan. 6, and Jan. 20. Stop in at the West Sacramento Lowes (2250 Lake Washington) where Master Gardeners of Yolo will be available at the Question & Answer Desk from 10 a.m. to noon.

This month’s “Kitchen Garden Chat” will be held on Saturday, Jan. 7, from 10 to 11 a.m. via Zoom (https://ucanr.zoom.us/j/98028723763). Led by Master Gardener Treva Valentine, this talk provides information for the year-round edible garden. This month’s talk will provide timely information regarding care and planting in January.

In addition, Valentine will answer questions about citrus and provide the “how-tos” for growing microgreens. And if by chance your holiday included the gift of a greenhouse, or you always wondered if your garden space is suitable for a greenhouse, this talk will provide information on the best location for a garden greenhouse.

There will be two presentations about growing grapes in this area by Master Gardener Doug Mackenzie, one on Zoom and one in person at Woodland Community College.

“Grape Vines in the Home Vineyard” will be held via Zoom on Thursday, Jan. 12, from 3 to 4 p.m. This workshop, a presentation of Master Gardeners — Yolo and the Yolo County Public Library, will be led by Master Gardener Doug Mackenzie. The presentation will cover all aspects of growing grapes, from planning to grape harvest. Both eating and wine-producing varieties will be discussed.

Topics include vine structure, physiology, vine development from planting to desired structure, annual pruning, nutrition, pest management and canopy management.  The Zoom link is https://yolocounty.zoom.us/j/81922300600 or contact Jennifer Baumbach at jmbaumbach@ucanr.edu or Joan Tuss at Joan.Tuss@yolocounty.org to have the Zoom link emailed to you.

The second workshop “Grape Pruning” will be held in person on Saturday, Jan. 28, from 10 a.m. to noon, in the demonstration garden at Woodland Community College, (2300 E. Gibson Rd., Woodland). The discussion will include strategies for growing grapes from newly purchased plants to mature vines, as well as tips for vine structure, annual pruning, crop control and pest management.  Attendees are encouraged to bring pruners for some hands-on instruction on pruning grape vines.

“Gardening for Year-Round Meals” will hold in-person workshops on two Saturdays in January from 10 a.m. to noon.This series of workshops, led by Master Gardener Loni Green will continue the series with a discussion on Jan. 14 with “Starting Seeds Indoors for Cold Season Crops.”

The second workshop, on Jan. 26, will focus on “Spinach, Peas, and Strawberries.” Learn how to include spinach and peas in your garden in addition to selecting and planting bare-root strawberries.  The presentation is at Grace Garden, located behind the United Methodist Church, at 1620 Anderson Rd. in Davis, near the back of the parking lot.  The discussion will take place indoors.

On Saturday, Jan. 21, Master Gardeners Maryellen Mackenzie and Janet Branaman will be in the Rose Garden at Woodland Community College to present a free workshop entitled “Rose Pruning and Care Workshop 2023” from 10 a.m. to noon.  The Rose Garden is located at 2300 East Gibson Rd. in Woodland, near Building 400. This talk will provide information on dormant season pruning and the care of roses. Come and learn basic rose pruning techniques that encourage robust spring blooming and healthy growth.

Interested in making your own compost? Attend “Composting” on Thursday, Jan. 26, from 3 to 4 p.m. This workshop is the second of a monthly series presented by Master Gardeners — Yolo and the Yolo County Public Library.  Jennifer Gilbert, the City of Davis Conservation Coordinator, will provide all the information you need to make your own “gardener’s gold.” This presentation will cover backyard composting, homemade food digesters and in-ground composting. The online presentation is held via Zoom ( https://yolocounty.zoom.us/j/84344564906). Contact Jennifer Baumbach at jmbaumbach@ucanr.edu or Joan Tuss at Joan.Tuss@yolocounty.org to have the Zoom link emailed to you.

No matter what question you have, you can obtain information about a specific garden issue by contacting the Master Gardeners via phone or email. Leave a message at the Master Gardener hotline at 530-666-8736 or send an email to mgyolo@ucdavis.edu, and someone will get back to you.

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