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Bask in Spring's Glory

April 11, 2002

California seldom gets April showers, but there is no shortage of spring flowers. Take time to savor the garden in its full spring glory.

If you want to work, there's still time to plant just about anything, from summer's petunias to a new lawn.

With ample water, new plants will be established before the heat of summer arrives.

Roses bloom early in the month. As these blossoms fade, prune flowering branches so only two "eyes," or buds, remain on the branch that has flowered, to make sure that the next round of bloom comes on sturdy stems.

Fertilize after each round of bloom, and water well.

Some rose experts put Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate, available at drugstores) around the bases of roses after this first flush of flowers to encourage new canes.

Sprinkle one cup around each bush and water in.

Now through May is the best time to plant citrus.

Make sure to water several times each week for the first month so they don't dry out.

From the Los Angeles Times California Garden Calender

Garden Calendar

Poppy Day with talks, demonstrations and plant and seed sale, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Theodore Payne Foundation, 10459 Tuxford St., Sun Valley. Registration required. For information, call (818) 768-1802 or visit www.theodorepay ne.org.

Cactus & Succulent Show & Sale, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, at South Coast Botanical Gardens 26300 Crenshaw Blvd., Palos Verdes Peninsula. Garden admission is $5. For information, call (310) 544-1948.

Southern California Spring Garden Show, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday; and 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Sunday, at South Coast Plaza, 3333 Bear St., Costa Mesa. Parking and admission free. For information, call (714) 435-2160 or visit www.southcoastplaza .com.

South Bay Orchid Society's 41st annual spring show and sale. Sale begins at 10:30; show, noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at Torrance Cultural Arts Center 3341 Torrance Blvd., Torrance. $4 admission. For information, visit www.SouthBayOrchidSociety Show.com.

Herb Festival and Spring Plant Sale, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Quail Botanical Garden, 230 Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas. $3. For information, call (760) 436-3036 or visit www.qbgardens .org.

"Rose Exhibition Fever: Getting Ready for Show Season" talk by Alice Hart, 3 p.m. Sunday, sponsored by Tinseltown Rose Society. La Cienega Park community facility at 8400 Grey Way, Beverly Hills. Free.

Robert Smaus, recently retired garden editor of The Times, will speak about his favorite plants, 7:30 p.m. on April 18, Descanso Gardens, 1418 Descanso Drive, La Canada Flintridge. Fee: $13 includes admission to the Gardens. Registration required by Saturday. Call (818) 949-7980.

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Send garden announcements to Garden Events, Los Angeles Times, 202 W. 1st St., Los Angeles, CA 90012, or e-mail to garden @la times.com at least three weeks before

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