June 2008 To Do List

By Rebecca Jepsen
for the Mercury News

Deadhead roses, salvias and dahlias to encourage continued bloom. Remove spent buds from camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas.

Control earwigs that which feed on soft plants and can cause significant damage. They feed at night and hide in moist, tight spaces during the day. Trap them by setting out moistened, tightly rolled newspapers at night; discard in the trash in the morning. Check out other control methods at University of California Pest Note on earwigs.

Look out for fire blight, which typically shows up in the spring. It causes blackened branches and twigs that look as if they have been scorched. Fire blight is common on fruit trees such as apple, pear, loquat and quince, as well as ornamentals such as toyon, hawthorn and crabapple. It is spread by insects, rain and pruning; if left unattended, it can kill the tree. Prune infected branches about eight to 12 inches below the visible damage. For more information go to UC Pest Note on fire blight.

Too much fruit? If you have an abundance of fruit and have already over-shared with your neighbors, contact Village Harvest. The non-profit organization offers volunteers that will pick your fruit and then donate it to the less fortunate in our community. Visit www.villageharvest.org for details.

For our complete list of June gardening tips, click on www.mastergardeners.org/tips/june.html.

What to plant now:

Transplants - arugula, basil, beans, beets, corn, cucumber, eggplant,melons, mint, peppers, summer squash, winter squash, tomatoes. Local nurseries should have a good supply of most of these.

Seeds - arugula, Brussels spouts, beets, corn, cucumber, summer squash.

To find a list of warm season vegetables that do well in Santa Clara County, go to www.mastergardeners.org/picks/warm.html or call the hotline at (408) 282-3105.

- Rebecca Jepsen, Santa Clara County Master Gardener