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February 4, 2015     Feather River Bulletin
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February 4, 2015
 

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14B Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015 Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Report~;r grams Paul Mrowczynski Special to Feather Publishing A well-planned garden is easier to take care of, saves time and is more productive than an unplanned garden. If you did not till the soil in the fall, do it as soon as the ground is warm and dry enough to work. Add soil amendments and fertilizer now if you skipped that step as well in the fall. Location determines the success of your garden. Though your choices may be limited, consider the following: --Good soil is loose, level, fertile and well-drained. --Avoid clays and very sandy soil unless you can add adequate organic matter. --Raised beds help improve drainage and tend to warm uP sooner in the spring. Sunlight produces healthy, high-quality vegetables. Nearby trees and shrubs can compete with garden crops for sunlight, nutrients and moisture. Avoid planting near walnut trees, as their roots produce a toxin that prevents vegetable growth. Provide a water supply close to the garden. can sprtng ~1~ ..~ ion Not every garden gets eight hours of full sun. However, it's possible to incorporate an individual vegetable's shade tolerance so that they all get a place in the sun. Art courtesy University of Illinois, Urbana Master Gardener GARDENING WITH ALTITUDE Follow early-harvest crops, such as leaf lettuce, spinach, radishes, green onions and peas, with beans, beets, carrots, cabbage, sweet corn, late spinach and late leaf lettuce. Spacing between rows is important for growth. Check seed packs for proper spacing. Sketch a plan Put your garden plan on paper. Your sketch should contain locations for each vegetable, row length and spacing, distance between plants, planting dates and what to plant next after each harvest. Microsoft Excel or other spreadsheets can be used to lay out the plan. There are also many Web-based plans; beans, bush lima beans, leafy greens, tomatoes, bell peppers and bush squash. Vegetables that take a lot of space include squash, pumpkins, corn ahd melons. Picking a garden plan How will your garden grow? Consider the following Separate early annual points when planning your plantings, such as tomatoes, garden, from those that grow more Garden size: How much quickly, like lettuce. land is available, how much Move perennials -- time do you have and how asparagus, rhubarb and much produce can you use? berries -- to the side of the Varieties: Choose garden. vegetables your family enjoys. To avoid shading plants, It is no good planting rutabagas taller crops should be to the if no one will eat them. north or east of shorter crops. Hybrid varieties usually Plant vegetables where they combine one line with disease are not shaded by trees, resistance with a line that shrubs, walls or fences. Don't improves quality, grow crops such as cabbages Sunlight: Vegetables need or potatoes in the same place at least eight hours of more than once every three sunlight each day for best years to Control diseases that growth. If shade is a problem, overwinter in the soil. consider this rule of thumb: Succession planting The sunniest spot goes to provides a continuous supply vegetables grown for their of vegetables. Sow two or fruits or seeds such as corn, three small patches of leaf tomato, squash, cucumber, lettuce and radishes a week eggplant, peppers, beans and apart in early spring, with peas. additional ones in the fall. Plants grown for their If space is available, there leaves or roots, like beets, can be at least two plantings cabbage, lettuce, mustard of beans, beets, broccoli, chard, spinach and turnips, cabbage and carrots -- once tolerate partial shade, early in the spring for For small gardens, plant summer use and a second vegetables with a high yield crop in the summer for fall per plant, such as bush snap harvest and storage. see the sidebar accompanying this column. For more information, visit University of Illinois Extension "Taste of Gardening": urbanext. illinois.edu/tog/planning.cfm The University of California Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Program provides the public with UC research-based information about home horticulture, sustainable landscape and pest management practices. Administered by local UCCE county offices, the program is the principal outreach and public service arm of the university's division of agriculture and natural resources. For plant advice call the master gardeners at283-6572. ice iss final policy for on fo grasslands The U.S. Forest Service recently released the final policy for managing snowmobile and other- over-snow vehicle use on national forests and grasslands. As directed by court order, the policy requires that roads, trails and areas where over-snow vehicle use can occur be specifically designated by local Forest Service managers. Previously, managers had the discretion to decide whether to designate specific areas for over-snow vehicle use. "The Forest Service always seeks to provide a wide range of motorized and nonmotorized recreational opportunities," said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. "This policy maintains community input and local decision making so that those with knowledge of local areas can decide how to best balance natural resource issues with legitimate recreational uses of national forest land." Many forests and grasslands currently have over-snow designations -- more than 40 percent of national forests where snow depths can accommodate over- snow vehicles have guidance consistent with the final policy -- and the agency has directed all remaining forest supervisors where the policy applies to make providing local guidance a priority. The policy maintains the requirement that all designations must be made with public input as well as ensure protection of natural resources, such as water, soils and wildlife, while continuing appropriate recreational opportunities for over-snow and other recreational uses. The court's order ensures that the final policy also provides consistency across all forests and grasslands by requiring designation of areas where over-snow use is allowed. The policy, which was published Wednesday, Jan. 28, in the Federal Register, is formalized in 30 days. :The Forest Service reviewed more than 20,000 comments on the proposed guidelines, which were published in June 2014. The best-known use of over-snow vehicles is recreation. However, over-snow vehicles are also used for other purposes, such as gathering firewood and subsistence hunting. Nationally, the U.S. Forest Service manages more than 200,000 miles of roads and 47,000 miles of trails that are open to motor-vehicle use. These roads and trails vary from single-track trails used by motorcycles to roads designed for high-clearance vehicles such as logging trucks. The final policy will preserve existing decisions governing over-snow vehicle use that were m~de under previous authorities with public involvement; allow decisions for over-snow vehicle use to be made independently or in conjunction with decisions ' for other types of motor vehicle use; and allow local units to create over-snow vehicle use maps separate from use maps.for other kinds' of motor vehicles. The mission of the Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the nation's forests and grasslands to meet the needs ' of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and privaW landowners and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. Those same lands provide 20 percent of the nation's clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year. The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the U.S., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live. 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