Showing posts from September, 2017

Oct 1 - 7 Monarch Watch at Hackberry Flat Center

Join the Wildlife Department Oct. 1-7 to tag monarchs and watch them roost.  More information at Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page. Sept. 22, 2017
Monarch butterflies will be tagged at Hackberry Flat WMA during their fall migration. (Jena Donnell/ODWC) Annual Monarch Watch at Hackberry Flat CenterThe Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation will host a Monarch Butterfly Watch the first week in October at the Hackberry Flat Center near Frederick.

Save Seeds Now for Next Year

Gardeners who save seed from their favorite flowers, herbs and vegetables from year to year are ensuring that their garden will please them. The seeds we choose to save are our favorite variety from the best plants, which means that they will be an improvement on the ones purchased.

Of course, money is saved by collecting your own seeds particularly if you usually purchase specialty seeds by mail order and add in the shipping costs.
Over years of saving only the best, the seeds available for the next season’s garden will produce top quality heirloom plants that are acclimated to your weather, water availability and climate, plus GMO-free.
 Save the seeds of plants with the qualities you prefer: Color, disease resistance, when they bear flowers or fruit, insect protection, size, length of storage in vase or basement, texture and yield.
Annuals are the easiest to save. Snip and save the seed heads of zinnias, cosmos, marigolds, petunias, columbine, dill, parsley, lettuce, kale, chard,…

Wingstem or Ironweed is Verbesina

Wingstem or Ironweed is classified as a weed by the Virginia Tech Weed Identification Guide but we planted it intentionally as a butterfly nectar food for our yard since its flowers are abundant in the fall when there is little else for our flying friends.

One if its other common names is Ironweed and there are several other plants with that common name, including Veronia novemboracensis which has blue-purple flowers in the fall.

Pine Ridge Gardens in NW Arkansas was the source for our original plant. It has taken several years for it to become 12 feet tall and begin to sucker out into the dry bed where it lives.

Since the blossoms are small we find a lot of skippers nectaring on the flowers. Oklahoma's Bina Flower Moth and Aluring Schinia Mothuse these plants to raise their caterpillars.

Wingstem, a member of the Aster family, is definitely an American native plant and can be found flourishing in open fields.

Other plant relatives include Yellow Crownbeard (Verbesina helianthoides)…

Garlic - Buy Your Seeds NOW

Worldwide, 2.5 million acres of garlic are grown to meet the needs of our kitchens and natural health pharmacies. Most of that garlic is grown in Asia, specifically China. CA has the largest growing area in the U.S. It is one of the easiest fall-planted crops you can grow in a kitchen garden.
Garlic can be planted from the seeds of the flower but only under special conditions so most of us just use cloves of garlic as seed. When you buy a head of garlic at the produce stand or farmer’s market, you break it apart into cloves. Each of those cloves has the potential to produce a head of garlic. Garlic planted now will be harvested next June. You must get going on ordering seed. Most companies run out of stock on varieties. You can tuck seed (cloves) into any sunny flower or vegetable bed or in a deep container where it will mature over the winter and next spring. We usually plant ours between now and Christmas. Select seed from recommended garlic varieties to ensure the best crop next summer…