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Oklahoma Gardening

Transcript for September 9, 2017

Oklahoma Gardening

(lively music)

>>> [Announcer] Welcome to Oklahoma Gardening.

On today's show,

we are visiting the Tulsa County OSU Extension Office

and a few of their horticultural activities.

Horticulture Extension Educator Brian Jervis

takes us on a tour of the Tulsa County OSU Extension Center.

At the Philbrook Museum of Art,

we examine a new pest in crepe myrtles.

We find out how Master Gardeners are partnering with local businesses

to beautify the Brookside area of Tulsa.

And we visit the home garden of a Tulsa County Master Gardener in Jenks America.

(lively music)


>>> Today, we're going to go visit one of our 77 counties

and look at how OSU Extension is impacting the community

and influencing horticulture.

(lively music)

>>> Greetings!  I'm Brian Jervis.

I'm one of the Horticulture educators here in Tulsa County.

You're at the Tulsa County Extension Office

and we're glad to have everybody here today.

Wanted to talk a little bit about our program,

our Master Gardener program specifically.

We're pretty excited about our program.

We have about 416 volunteers that are active.

Last year, in 2016,

they volunteered 40,000 hours

for Oklahoma Cooperative Extension.

We're excited to be a part of the gardening community

and share the love of gardening.

Tulsa Master Gardeners go out into the public school systems

and last year, or this last school year,

we taught about 22,000 kids

about gardening,

about worms,

about soils, about trees.

We really enjoy that.

It's good to have the kids learn about gardening.

Each year we have a training in the Fall.

We're lucky to have about 120 people apply to be a Master Gardener

and we accept 40 into our class.

It's a 15-week class.

We have it on Wednesdays from nine until three.

Covering the whole broad spectrum of whatever there is related to gardening

and gardening problems.

You're out at our demonstration garden today.

Around our building here at the Tulsa County Fairgrounds,

our volunteers have put in the plants

and care for it, put irrigation in.

It's a great demonstration garden for when people come in with problems

or they want a good example of a shade plant that they can plant.

We can take them out to our shady area

or our sunny area

and show them examples of plants,

show them what they look like.

If they come in in the winter time,

we can show them what they look like at the winter time maybe without the flowers,

maybe the bark.

It's a great way and great for the community to see our garden.

Most all of them are labeled,

so they can get an example.

Take them back to the nursery.

Find out the plants,

get them and buy them from there.

When you're out working in your yards

and you see problems with your plants,

you can bring them to any Extension Office

or feel free to bring them to the Tulsa County Extension Office.

We have volunteers on the phones Monday through Friday,

8:00 to 4:30.

If you feel free to email them

or you can give us a phone call.

(phone ringing)

Now you're inside at our diagnostic center.

Today, we have Tom Ingram here answering the phones.

Tom answers the phones probably once a week here.

Tom, tell us a little bit about the phone room.

>>> Well, the phone center is kind of the nerve center here for our diagnostic center.

People call, they email, they walk in.

They either want to know what's wrong with something that they have

or they want a suggestion on how I could do something better,

or what's a good plant to plant here or shrub.

We get a lot of people walking in with sick plants

or insects, wanting to know what this is,

and how do I get rid of it.

What's this lack fungus all over my tomato plants?

There's been a lot of that lately, this summer.

>>> Great! So we get about 4,000 phone calls,

4,000 inquiries here in the diagnostic center a year.

>>> About 4,000 a year.

Sometimes it's just really busy.

Today's really busy.

It's prime season for bugs and insects

and disease out there so we're doing our best to help.

It's good to see it and there's usually three of us here.

You won't have to wait,

but it's not unusual for all three of us to be busy at the same time.

>>> Do you have to know everything to be a Master Gardener?

>>> [Tom] Well, you don't have to know everything,

but this is a good place to learn,

here in the phone center, with what walks through the door.

We've got people with lots of different experience levels,

brand new people and Master Gardeners here that have been here 20 years.

They're a huge resource for us as well as just the Extension Agents,

such as yourself, for backup.

>>> [Brian] Great, Tom.

I'm glad you're here today.

Thank you.

>>> [Tom] Alright, thanks.

(lively music)


>>> We're looking at a crepe myrtle,

here at the Philbrook Museum

and crepe myrtles are a beautiful flowering shrub.

They flower all summer and on into fall.

They've got a lot of different colors on crepe myrtles.

They have great bark

and we really love crepe myrtles.

Probably our favorite.

But what we found,

we found some scale that has been attacking crepe myrtles lately.

It's called a crepe myrtles bark scale

and we have seen it a lot in Tulsa.

What I wanted to show in this segment is the scale

and a little bit of examples of the scale.

Here with us is the Director of Horticulture at Philbrook, Sheila Kanotz,

and we're excited to have her and be at her location

and talk a little bit about her crepe myrtles.

Sheila, thanks for having us.

>>> Sure, thanks for coming.

>>> The scales, you said you started noticing them this year

and it is kind of a scary thing 'cause we do have a lot of crepe myrtles around.

Anything that attacks a lot of plants,

we're going to have issues.

Tell us when you found them and what you saw.

>>> Sure, yeah it was just about five or six weeks ago now that first saw it.

We've just seen it on these crepe myrtles that are up here in the south formal garden.

We just started noticing the kind white, fuzzy insects there,

where we had cuts made.

>>> The crepe myrtle bark scale kind of has three life cycles here.

It kind of runs three life cycles throughout the year.

What we're seeing, it is new.

It's a pest that came from China.

They noticed it in Texas,

in Dallas area, in 2004.

A landscape company found them

and so they started doing a little study,

then a little research.

Then they've just kind of grown from there so they're throughout the midwest.

How do you care for these?

Do you cut these back?

How exactly you take care of these here?

>>> Yeah, we do cut these back every year,

just from the location they're in and the size we're trying to maintain right here.

We do have other crepe myrtles on the property that we don't cut back

and we have not found the scale on those yet.

We're just looking at trying to maintain them

and we have the beehives on property,

so what we're going to be doing to take care of this without negatively impacting our bees.

>>> Correct, yeah, and it's one of those that, we are seeing it.

The scale has a piercing, sucking mouth part

so it likes the tender growth, the new fresh growth.

When you go and cut those back every year,

that growth is pretty tender so they can get in,

verses the wood material that maybe a year old.

They just can't penetrate that as well.

Okay, so control on crepe myrtles bark scale is kind of a new territory.

We've controlled different scales in the past but this one's called a felt-type scale.

What they do,

they extrude and kind of grow a felty material on their backs

as they connect to that plant.

One of the options is,

is a dormant oil,

is a winter dormant oil that we've done with other scales before.

We will coat that whole crepe myrtle limb with a heavy dormant oil

or a heavy horticulture oil.

The other options would be is chemicals.

We have a couple chemicals maybe,

some contact chemicals that can work.

Not so effective because of that waxy substance.

Some of the chemicals that we can use,

we do want to be careful when the bees are active.

Some of the systemics will get inside the plant and it can transfer that chemical through the pollen

and then harm the bees.

We were talking early about actually getting in there and mechanically removing.

Getting in there and scrubbing.

What do you think ya'll's option,

what do you think your best options are going to be?

>>> I think we're going to try the mechanical,

then we're looking at maybe getting a few beneficial insects in

and so just some general predators,

since they don't really seem to have anything specifically for the crepe myrtle bark scale yet.

>>> Okay, so maybe some lady beetles and maybe some lacewings

>>> Right, yeah.

>>> And things like that.

That should help, but it's hard.

We're in new ground, new territory,

so we're scouting, watching, keeping that tree healthy.

Another thing that I haven't mentioned is the sooty mold.

Sooty mold's been around and it comes off of aphids

and any honeydew secreting insects.

So they're going to suck and feed on the juices.

Those juices are going to go through their body

and come out the other side as a honey substance

or a sugary substance.

That's one way to tell if you have crepe myrtle bark scale.

If you have that black kind of powdery, sooty mold looking material underneath,

especially in the Fall.

Another way to tell is you got a lot of ants.

The ants will go in and harvest the honeydew.

Then that's sugary,

so they're going to take that

and there's going to be a lot of ant movement around that trunk.

Another good thing for a homeowner to do is watch for the ants,

watch for the sooty molds and then of course,

watch for that crepe myrtle bark scale that you can see.

(lively music)


>>> Alright, so we're out on Brook side,

down at around 41st and Peoria here in Tulsa County.

What we're doing,

we're going to show you a little bit about what we're doing with community beautification,

community business beautification.

We're pretty excited about this project.

Today we have Gerald Hatfield.

Gerald's a Master Gardener with our program

and he's Chairman of our community beautification, Tulsa Blooms!

So Gerald, you may tell us a little bit.

How long have you been in the program and a little bit about the pots.

>>> [Gerald] Well, I started with Master Gardener the classes of 2012,

as you know, Brian.

>>> [Brian] Okay.

>>> [Gerald] I've been Chairman of this particular Tulsa Blooms!

for the past two years.

>>> [Brian] Okay.

>>> One of the things that I'd like for everybody to understand is that this is all volunteer

>>> Yes.

>>> We've got 18 volunteers that help us do the maintenance.

They do the watering, the fertilizing, they trim back a little bit when it's required.

Then, twice a year, like this Spring,

we planted these petunias and in October,

we'll pull the petunias out and we'll plant either violas or pansies.

At that point, that's when the Master Gardeners really turn out

and helps us and we'll get like 50 people down here,

between here and Blue Dome, downtown.

>>> Yep.

>>> Between Brook side and Blue Dome,

we've got 120 pots that we maintain, that we plant.

>>> [Brian] That's awesome.

>>> [Gerald] And once again, it's all volunteers.

I would say that we've got approximately 30 to 35 merchants that support us

>>> [Brian] Okay.

>>> [Gerald] What they do is originally,

they paid to have the pots set about 10 years ago.

That's how old this program is.

>>> [Brian] Okay, okay.

>>> Since the, they pay us so much a year if we do the watering

and then so much a year if they do the watering.

>>> Correct.

>>> And then all we do is just plant.

There's a mix of that.

I've got 18 people,

as I said before, that's on the watering team.

We water Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

As a matter of fact,

I'm one of those people

and I just finished, with he help of my grandson,

watering the west side here on Brook side.

>>> [Brian] Okay.

>>> [Gerald] That's kind of where we are.

>>> Great, great.

Yeah, it has been a challenge.

We've learned a lot.

>>> Oh we have.

>>> We first started 10 years ago, like you said.

We started with our local TV station, Channel 2,

and I think we put in six to eight pots at that point.

The idea was to show the businesses that we could plant flowers.

A little bit of care and a little bit of work throughout the year,

but you can have a beautiful pot to help beautify your front,

there to welcome in their customers.

>>> [Gerald] And we get so many compliments.

Not only do I hear it when I'm watering,

but the watering team shares with me.

We get together every couple of months

and have a little meeting.

They share with how as they're watering down here in the morning,

the runners are down or the people walking their dogs

and they say, "we just can't believe the work "

you guys do and these look so beautiful "

and we appreciate it so much.

" Of course, that's all the payment our volunteers need.

>>> That's right.

It is work and on these pots, some of them have irrigation.

I think we were talking and about a half of them.

>>> [Gerald] Right.

>>> [Brian] They have a drip irrigation

>>> [Gerald] Right.

>>> [Brian] Which we enjoy, 'cause learning from experience,

if they don't have a constant water, especially during these heat,

summer days, it gets hot.

Very important.

>>> Well and also too, over the years,

we've experimented with different plants.

As you know, for a long time, we had some boxwood in here,

but they were just sucking all the moisture out

and our petunias faltered about this time of year.

>>> [Brian] Yeah, yeah.

>>> [Gerald] So a couple years ago,

we pulled all them out and now we're going to with this fountain grass.

We've been fairly successful,

but I think, as you and I have discussed,

next year we'll probably move to a different type of grass.

We keep experimenting to find the best mix of what is good maintenance and is beautiful.

>>> Right, and we have Bubblegum Vista Petunias around, that's the pink flowers.

Like Gerald said,

we have the Fountain Grass,

Fireworks is the variety on that.

We like the peak but we would like to go to another color

and we tried that about a year

>>> Right, and failed.

>>> Or two ago, and failed.

Now we kind of got a trademark of this pink.

Everybody recognizes these flowers down here and that's something we were trying to do on that.

It works fairly well for us.

And like you said, we expanded.

We, about five years ago, we decided to try another area.

We found Blue Dome district.

>>> [Gerald] Exactly.

>>> [Brian] Downtown.

>>> Well down in the Brook side, we've got East-West streets and we just didn't get enough sun,

so we've experimented with lantanas and we've got some good looking lantanas down there right now.

We've put in some petunias and just various different plants.

We're watching them real close to make sure that what we've got is going to work.

Each year,

we just try to go with something,

that we know lantanas will work

and now we're trying to find another species that will work in with the lantanas,

make a beautiful full pot.

Every year we learn a little bit.

>>> [Brian] Great.

>>> Through our program down at Blue Dome,

people saw that and now the city of Tulsa,

Downtown Unlimited as you'll know is doing some things based on the luck we've had with our pots down there.

>>> [Brian] Correct, correct.

We're excited about that as well.

(guitar music)


>>> So we're at another location here with our Tulsa Blooms,

and I want to tell you a little bit about the history of this.

We started about ten years ago.

Dr. Allen Stevens from Kansas State,

he does a lot of annual trials up at Kansas State,

came and spoke to our Master Gardener group

and he was showing these on a couple slides

and kind of caught our eye,

and he said, you know,

after visiting with him,

he said, you know, this is a project that can be done anywhere.

They have a lot of little small town communities in Kansas

that will put pots up

and down their business areas,

and so getting thinking and getting the brain going,

he said, you know, you can do it here in Tulsa,

and I said, well we don't have a lot of small communities,

we're one big community,

so he said, but no, you really have different business associations that can play the role.

So again, we tried it, and it seems to be great and successful,

so we're really proud of it.

Okay so we're at one of our local businesses,

and we wanted to get Janine Billings,

one of the State Farm agents here in town that is involved with our program on Tulsa Blooms

and get her perspective on what our program's doing for the community.

>>> Absolutely, the Tulsa Master Gardeners program came to us about ten years ago

to the Brookside Business Association

to kind of kick off this new idea they had to take a part of town

and develop it and adding flowers

and color and warmth and happiness

and that's exactly what you guys have done for Brookside

and we are so grateful to have over 100 pots right here on Brookside.

>>> Great, yeah, and we're glad to be a part of it.

And as you can tell, you know,

it really helps the businesses and it shows that color, adds that color.

Little bit of work, but we're proud of the product.

We're definitely glad to be a part of it.

>>> Well I would like to encourage you to keep the bubblegum petunias,

because Brookside looks pretty in pink.

>>> Yeah the pink, pink's definitely a trademark.

You look down the street and see the pink,

and it's a great time of year right now because that's what you see,

that sea of pink.

>>> Exactly, a lot of notification to everybody

and brings a lot of people to the area.

Everybody likes color.

>>> Yeah, perfect.

Well thank you for being a part of the program.

>>> Thank you so much.

>>> And we really appreciate it.

>>> I appreciate it too.

>>> Thank you.

>>> Thank you.

(upbeat music)


>>> So another part of this Tulsa Blooms community beautification project is a fun one.

It's a door hanger.

And what we do,

we've printed off these door hangers

and basically the door hanger says thank you for your beautiful landscape,

and we'll put them in Master Gardeners cars and hands,

and as they drive by a beautiful landscape,

they'll go and hang it on their door,

thanking them for their beautiful landscape that they have.

So when our volunteers are on the phone,

they'll get these phone calls saying,

hey I got a door hanger,

and thank you for putting the door hanger on our house,

we really appreciate it.

And then we get to hear stories about them and their landscape and maybe the rose bush.

We really enjoy that part of the door hanging community beautification project.

It's a good way to market our program

and market what we're doing with our community beautification project Tulsa Blooms.

(upbeat music)


Alright, we are at Debby Bezan's house.

Debby's a Master Gardener in Tulsa County

and she's been a Master Gardener since 2011.

>>> That's right.

>>> Beautiful house,

we're looking forward to touring the beds and looking at all the pretty plants.

So kind of tell us a little bit about the house

and kind of the beds that you've got going.

>>> Well we moved in here about three years ago.

And a lot of these beds were just basically bermuda grass.

And we decided we wanted to expand that a little bit.

I like to do both vegetable gardening and also ornamental,

so we put some new beds and been going at it ever since.

>>> Well they do look beautiful.

There's a mix between tomatoes

and pretty flowering plants,

and butterfly gardens and things like that here.

So you know you got a beautiful bed,

kind of a border bed that does have a mix.

So we were talking earlier

and you said you had some rose rosette problems

and had to adjust a little bit.

>>> Right.

>>> But these roses look pretty good.

>>> Now these two are doing pretty well.

We had one in the middle here that got rosette

and so we had to take it out

and we put a vitex in just this last year,

so it's kind of a baby, but it's doing pretty well.

>>> Yeah those vitex come right up and they're tough as nails for sure.

>>> Yeah they're really pretty.

>>> They look great.

Marigolds, kind of intermixed to give us some color.

It's beautiful, beautiful.

Butterfly bush, how's the butterfly bush?

>>> That one's probably about two or three years old.

We had to prune it back this year,

so it's a little smaller than it was last year,

but it's perking up.

>>> Great, I see the way station.

Talk a little bit about the way station and what that's all about.

>>> Well Tulsa's trying to get a lot of monarch way stations going

to attract the monarchs

and keep them going on their migration,

and this way station, to qualify,

you have to have three

Three different types of Milkweeds,

and then you have to have a lot of different nectar plants too.

And so that's what we've done here.

>>> Okay, great, great.

So we're down a little farther in kind of your intermixed vegetables,

and Marigolds,

and beans,

and tomatoes look wonderful.

>>> We planted; I've had tomatoes here on this side just this year,

and I put 'em on the other side last year.

So I try to switch them out a little bit to try to keep the diseases down

>>> Mm-hmm.

>>> a bit.

All different varieties here.

We've got Cherry tomatoes,

we've got Celebrity, Early Girl, Better Boy,

Big Boy, got a Roma  on the end there.

So I try different varieties;

kinda keep 'em going throughout the season.

>>> I see how you've pruned up the bottom leaves

>>> Yeah.

>>> which is a great idea this time of year with the temperature the way it is,

and the humidity the way it is.

We definitely get a lot of water splashing which is a good problem to have,

but not so good for the tomatoes.

>>> Right.

>>> To help keep the disease down.

And so was that your goal on these?

>>> Yeah, we had a lot of trouble with fungus on the lower leaves

and they were starting to look yellow and curling up.

So I've trimmed them down

and sprayed a little fungicide on them to try to keep that under control.

>>> Yeah, fungicide definitely has been our friend this high humidity season

>>> Yeah, definitely.

>>> for sure.

>>> Have to pick 'em quick.

>>> Yeah, you bet.

Yeah they're starting to ripen up.

So, I see you have sweet potatoes,

and green beans,

and asparagus in the back.

>>> Right, back over there, and we got some Malabar Spinach,

which is a vining spinach that grows well in the summertime,

and then some cucumbers too.

>>> Right.

And have you grown sweet potatoes before?

>>> Yes, uh-huh.

>>> Usually get a good crop?

>>> We do, and it's a lot of fun to dig them up in the fall.

>>> It is.

It is.

Great, great.

Yeah this is definitely a great mix of plants and vegetables

and the Marigolds there,

maybe hopefully stop an insect or two and beautiful, beautiful bed.

>>> Thank you.

>>> So we've got some pretty examples,

and pretty standard examples of some backyard around a pool,

and wonderful pocket gardens around the pool.

Kinda talk about the pocket gardens you have here,

and your little friend.

>>> Oh, (laughs) this is Buddy.

He likes the pool area too.

>>> Yeah that's right.

>>> He likes to drink out of it.

But we have these little, tiny pocket gardens here

and we have these black Elephant Ears,

and then we've got some Vinca down here,

and Mexican Heather.

The Vinca and the Mexican Heather are annuals,

and these black Elephant Ears have turned out to be perennials.

I'm kinda surprised,

but they've come back the last two or three years.

>>> Yeah, you love that area.

It kinda helps break the concrete up,

and it kinda goes into the beds again.

Beds are beautiful in the pool area too,

and, you know, working through it,

and you've got all sorts of flowers,

and then coming over here,

where you got kind of a problem area,

I guess you was talking about earlier.

>>> Yeah.

>>> So tell us about the problem area.

>>> Well when we got the house,

this area was basically just full of weeds,

and there were so many weeds it was kinda hard to control them.

And so we decided to put in Moneywort,

and we got two different varieties here:

a yellow one and a green one,

and we're trying to get it just to grow a ground cover to crowd out the weeds.

>>> Yeah it is kind of an area.

And Moneywort does a good job,

you know, you've got a beautiful Crepe Myrtle in the back,

and the Moneywort will take a little bit of shade,

but it'll also take some sun too, so.

>>> Mm-hmm.


>>> Very, very pretty.

It is a nice, nice day, and it's nice to come out and enjoy your garden, I'm sure.

>>> Well thank you.

>>> Thank you very much.

>>> All right.

Appreciate it.


>>> [Announcer] There are lots of great horticultural events this time of year.

Be sure and consider these activities when you're making your plans for the weeks ahead.

(pleasant country music)