Ask a Master Gardener

Garden Tour and Urban Gardener Classes

Garden Tour and Urban Gardener Classes

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

As many of you know, horticultural education is one of the prime directives, for not only the Tulsa County OSU Extension but also for the Tulsa Master Gardeners. Because of this, we teach about horticulture wherever we can and in whatever ways we can. As part of that educational outreach, we have two opportunities for you on the horizon.
Here’s a question we get asked many times: what type of plant would you recommend for my location/situation? We have lists of plants that are appropriate...

Growing Sunflowers

Growing Sunflowers

Saturday, May 21, 2022

I have always loved sunflowers but have never grown them. Anything I should know first? AR
Sunflowers are a great addition to any garden. Birds will love them, and they can serve as a food source for both animals and people.
The flower head on sunflowers is actually a concentration of hundreds of tiny flowers we call florets. Sunflower seeds are individual fruits that forms on the head of the sunflower and the large yellow petals that surround the flower head are interestingly colorful...

Growing Beans

Growing Beans

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

I love beans of just about all types and would like to grow some in my garden. What should I know to get started? OS
One of the great things about growing beans is that they are pretty easy to grow and there are a lot of varieties to make it interesting. Let’s take a look at what you need to know to grow beans successfully.
The first thing you will need to decide is what kind of beans do you want to grow. There are bush beans which are compact plants that work well in gardens or pots....

Growing Peonies

Growing Peonies

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

I planted some peonies a couple of years ago. They are blooming for the first time this year, but the flower buds have ants all over them. What should I do? LT
Peonies are a long-time garden favorite and a perennial in every sense of the word. Cold in the winter actually helps peonies because they need a good winter chill to break dormancy and grow. To accomplish this, temperatures must be below 40 degrees, but peonies are hardy to minus 50 degrees making them a lot tougher than the plants...

Growing Seedless Watermelons

Growing Seedless Watermelons

Saturday, May 7, 2022

I’ve always loved seedless watermelons, but if they don’t produce seeds, how in the world do you grow them? SJ
That’s a very good question, especially since gardeners spend so much time cultivating and planting seeds for their home gardens. The story about seedless watermelons is pretty interesting, so here we go.
Seedless watermelons have been around a while, but they are still a relative newcomer being introduced about 50 years ago. Early versions of the seedless watermelons we know...

Using Mulch in the GArden

Using Mulch in the GArden

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

I was able to plant all my flowers and vegetables last weekend and they are looking great. I remember you talking about mulch quite a bit, but I have never used it. Is it really worth the effort? GJ
Like you, I was able to get all my new plants in the ground or in pots over the weekend. It’s a lot of work but it’s also very rewarding to look around and take it all in when you get finished. So, congratulations!
Yes, we do talk about mulch quite a bit here because mulch is one of the best...

Container Gardening

Container Gardening

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

I enjoy reading your articles, but most of the information is for people who have a yard. I live in an apartment, but I would still like to grow a few vegetables or herbs. Any suggestions? BM
Good for you. Not having a yard doesn’t mean your green thumb can’t get some exercise. In some ways, you have an advantage over those of us with yards because you can devote more time to your plants than homeowners since a big portion of our discretionary time is consumed by mowing. So, let’s talk about...

Tent Caterpillars

Tent Caterpillars

Saturday, April 23, 2022

The tree in my yard has webbing in some of the branches and I think I see caterpillars. What should I do? KW
The webs you are describing are probably the webs of tent caterpillars. Tent caterpillars are kind of the spring variation of fall webworms. It is easy to tell them apart by their webs.
The tent caterpillars build their webs in the v’s between branches while fall webworms construct their webs out toward the end of the branch. That, and tent caterpillars are active in the spring...

Growing Squash

Growing Squash

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

I love squash and would love to grow some in my garden but so many of my gardener friends have given up on growing squash. Any suggestions to help keep my squash plants healthy? KS
As gardeners, many of us have a love-hate relationship with squash. Yes, fresh squash is delicious, but there are a couple of insects that seem to do their best to “squash” our squash dreams every year. Before we talk about them, let’s talk about best practices for growing squash.
Many gardeners start their...

Growing Tomatoes

Growing Tomatoes

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

I am new to gardening, and I want to start growing some vegetables. I was thinking of starting with tomatoes in containers. Any suggestions? SC
It’s not surprising that you want to start with tomatoes since tomatoes have to be the #1 crop for home gardeners. However, there are so many different types, it can get confusing. Let’s de-clutter the thought process on growing tomatoes a little bit.
When selecting which variety of tomato, you want to grow, the first decision you will likely...