Regional Gardening Reports :: National Gardening Association

Southern California Coastal & Inland Valleys

May, 2004
Regional Report

Shows & Events

Flower, Garden, Art Festival
"Make Gardening Your Mission" is the title of a festival on June 12 and 13, 2004, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., at Mission San Juan Capistrano historic site. The festival will include plant vendors, demonstrations, lectures, artists, statuary, ceramic pots, garden furniture, food, and entertainment. Mission rooms and museum will be open. $6 adults, $5 seniors, $4 children. For more information, phone (949) 234-1300 x321, e-mail, or visit:

Favorite or New Plant

Loving Lawn
While large expanses of lawn are indeed wasteful of water, their rich green color and soft feel is certainly pleasurable. A bit of lawn around perennial and vegetable beds -- just enough to stretch out on and wiggle your toes in -- is a nice compromise. Mow lawns once or twice a week. Set mower blade height to between 2 and 3 inches. Don't cut off more than 25 percent of new growth at a time or the lawn won't have enough leaf area to grow well.

Fertilize the lawn with a slow-release fertilizer just enough to keep it growing well but not so much it stimulates lots of lush, water-demanding growth that will keep you mowing!

Begin to change lawn-watering patterns from every several days to only once a week or once every ten days. Let the grass tell you when it needs to be watered -- it will wilt slightly and turn from bright green to dull green. Continue to water deeply to thoroughly moisten the soil down to the bottom root tips (6 to 12 inches deep). This will allow the surface of the soil to dry between waterings and encourage deep rooting so the lawn will be healthier and can go longer without water. Diseases develop when grass blades and the soil surface are constantly wet, especially when the weather is warm.


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