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Walnut Creek Magazine

Get Your Garden On

Apr 01, 2021 08:20AM ● By Pam Kessler

If you’re eager to dig in the dirt and plant an edible landscape, mark your calendar for April 6 and place an order for tomatoes, herbs, cucumbers, eggplant, and peppers from Shadeland's Master Garden. This year instead of standing in line to select your crops, the Great Tomato Plant Sale is online, making it easy to shop, place an order, and pick it up when notified. 

With a dazzling spectrum of over 78 one of a kind heirloom and hybrid varieties, in colors ranging from black, purple, pink, green, orange, every shade of red imaginable, tomatoes are clearly the “queens” of the plant sale, but plenty of other herbs and veggies are available for order too.

“There are a lot of choices when it comes to tomatoes. Sometimes it’s fun to order based on a name like Bloody Butcher. Or if you prefer something slightly smaller try Buffalo Steak or something based on color like Brandywine Red or Black Krim. You can’t really go wrong. I’m ordering some Big Beefs, Diva Cucumbers, and Shishito Peppers,” says Walnut Creek's former mayor Bob Simmons.

Since the mid-1980s, trained volunteers like Simmons, share their time and talent cultivating crops and teaching community members about the ins and outs of edible gardening in Contra Costa County. From soil and sun to water and bugs, you can find tips, techniques, and how-to videos on the UC Master Gardener Program website. 

Details: Plants are $4, payable by check or cash when you pick them up at 111 N. Wiget Lane in Shadelands Business Park. To download a shopping list and view the collection of plants on sale, go to




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