Master Gardener Monthly Newsletter

August 2023

Featured Article

Firewise Landscaping

UC Master Gardeners

“Fire Season” will soon be here. It seems paradoxical, but this year’s drought-ending rains actually increase the threat of wildfire. This is because the lush vegetation made possible by the series of “atmospheric rivers” will soon dry out and, if not managed properly, will become fuel. Although wildfires were once confined to woodland areas, homes in suburban areas are increasingly vulnerable to devastation. The good news is that there are things you can do to improve the odds of your home surviving a wildfire. The time to act is now. Read more.

Upcoming Events

Garden June/July/August Checklists

UC Master Gardeners

Find information for the current season, or view other seasonal checklists using the left panel of our main website.

Serramonte Farmers' Market Education Table

Serramonte Mall

133 Serramonte Center

Daly City, CA 94015

Every other Thursday, 9:00am-1:00pm

Come visit the UC Master Gardener education table at the Serramonte Farmers’ Market. Master Gardener volunteers will be available every other Thursday starting July 6th to answer questions regarding plants, planting techniques and more. The Farmers' Market is located behind Macy's. Read more.

San Mateo County Disaster Preparedness Day

San Mateo County Event Center

1346 Saratoga Drive

San Mateo, CA 94403

August 5, 2023, 10:00am-2:00pm

The County of San Mateo is holding its annual disaster preparedness day, which includes interactive demonstrations, classes and safety resources. UC Master Gardeners will be on hand to answer your questions regarding “firewise planting." In addition, there will be a 30-minute presentation on protecting the home through defensible space and choosing the right plants. Read more.

Plant Clinic at the San Mateo Arboretum

UC Master Gardeners

San Mateo Arboretum in Central Park

101 9th Avenue

San Mateo, CA 94401

August 6, 2023, 12:00pm-3:00pm

Master Gardeners will be available to answer your questions from general information to advice about specific problems. Bring samples of your problem plants in clear plastics bags for better diagnosis. If you suspect insect damage, try to include some of the insects so they can be correctly identified. Registration is not required.

You Too Can Compost

UC Master Gardeners

Lyngso Garden Materials

Zoom presentation

August 9, 2023, 12:00pm-3:00pm

In this introduction to composting, you will learn what tools you need, where to locate your pile, how compost is made, how to use it, and how to troubleshoot. Making compost is fun and very rewarding. California recently passed a law requiring all food scraps, yard waste, and soiled paper products be diverted from the landfill. That means putting them into a green bin or into your compost pile. Registration is required.

Container Gardening with Succulents

UC Master Gardeners

Flowercraft Garden Center

550 Bayshore Blvd

San Francisco, CA 94124

August 12, 2023, 10:00am-11:00am

Learn everything you need to grow the most colorful and healthy succulent planters. This talk provides the basic information you will need to design, plant and care for succulents in containers. Sun, shade and indoor appropriate plant lists will be discussed. Registration is not required.

Easy Fall and Winter Vegetable Gardening

UC Master Gardeners

San Mateo County Event Center

UC Master Gardener Gardening Education Center

2495 South Delaware Street

San Mateo, CA 94403

August 12, 2023, 10:30am-12:00pm

Explore the pleasures of cool season gardening. learn how to successfully grow the stars of the winter garden (spinach, lettuce, peas, carrots and more), how to prepare your garden beds for fall and spring planting, the importance of light hours and temperatures, cover cropping techniques, plant protection and how different types of vegetables (including Asian varieties) grow in our mild Mediterranean climate. After class, tour the garden and learn more about gardening through the seasons. Registration is required.

Fostering Living Soil for Healthy Roses

UC Master Gardeners

Peninsula Rose Society

1455 Madison Avenue

Redwood City, CA 94061

August 15, 2023, 7:00pm-8:00pm

Is your soil alive? Come hear how plant roots and soil microbes interact to create an ideal environment for growing healthy roses. In this class you will learn how to maintain soil health by doing less than you think! Registration is not required.

Divisadero Farmers Market

1377 Fell Street

San Francisco, CA 94117

Sundays Year-Round, 9:00am-1:00pm

The Divisadero Farmers Market sees close to 1,000 visitors annually on the 3rd Sunday of each month. Find citrus, winter greens, root veggies, Brussels sprouts, and more. Watch for spring onions, peas, fava beans, and other spring arrivals. Visit the Master Gardener information table for answers to your plant questions and about the Master Gardener program. Street parking available; for public transportation visit the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency website. Visit the Divisadero Farmers Market website for more information. Read more.

UC Master Gardeners Website

Our webside features articles such as summer-wise watering, to prune or not to prune, keeping aphids under control, plant for pollinators; plus there are YouTube videos, Coastside magazine articles, a way to request a speaker, and more. Come visit our website!

Our Mission Statement

To extend research-based knowledge and information on home horticulture, pest management, and sustainable landscape practices to the residents of California and be guided by our core values and strategic initiatives." Follow us on our WebsiteFacebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, or YouTube channels.

Gardening Resources


Choose the affected plant from photos displayed, click on the photo, remove any selections that do not apply, click on the plant names, and continue to filter selections to view the results for a possible diagnoses. Learn more.


Select links to access gardening resources, California Backyard Orchard, Integrated Pest Management (IPM), publications, and finding a local Master Gardener program.  Learn more.


Do you need help picking plants for your sustainable home garden? Selecting from the “Arboretum All-Stars” list is an easy way to start making “green” choices for your great looking garden. Arboretum All-Stars are top plants recommended by the horticultural staff of the UC Davis Arboretum. They thrive in California’s Mediterranean climate and have qualities that make them great choices for sustainable home gardens. Use searchable plant database to pick the perfect All-Star for your garden conditions. For more information, view their website.


Looking for plants native to California that are not only pretty but are pollinators and drought resistant? A few resources are: Xerces SocietyCalifornia Native Plant Society, and Calflora, Or try a native plant database for plants within your zip code. This website will help you find the best native plants specifically for your area that attract butterflies and moths and the birds that feed on their caterpillars, based on the scientific research of Dr. Douglas Tallamy and Research Assistant Kimberley Shropshire.


Browse the website to see all plants on the California Invasive Plant Council inventory, including both invasive plants and “watch” species. Clicking on the scientific name will take you to the Plant Profile where you will find links to more information on the plant.

Ask a Master Gardener

 UC Master Gardener volunteers are ready help you and your garden. Have a question about gardening? Have a pest problem? Curious about what will grow well in your region? Submit your inquiry online.

Or visit the Master Gardener Helpline by phone, email, on the web, or in person. For more information visit our website.

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