It’s “Thyme” to Register for Oklahoma Gardening School

It’s “Thyme” to Register for Oklahoma Gardening School


Oklahoma Gardening School “Growing Beautiful, Successful and Low-Maintenance Herb Gardens”

Saturday, March 9 at Devon Auditorium, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Myriad Botanical Gardens’ annual Oklahoma Gardening School, presented by Meinders Foundation and Devon Energy, is the state’s premier annual horticultural symposium designed for home gardeners and professional horticulturists, garden designers and landscape architects. This year’s theme is “Growing Beautiful, Successful and Low-Maintenance Herb Gardens.” It will be Saturday, March 9 at Devon Auditorium, located at 333 West Sheridan and Hudson, to the west of the Devon Energy Tower. Speakers from Balmville, New York; Glen Echo, Maryland; Dallas, Texas; and Tuttle, Oklahoma will inspire as they demonstrate how to grow purposeful herb gardens through adaptive designs, proper plant selection, and precise cultivation and maintenance practices to produce the finest aromatic, culinary, and therapeutic benefits for a healthier and more bountiful gardening experience. Their illustrated talks and Q&A discussions help participants learn how to create, and maintain more sustainable gardens in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Gardening School 2019 is sponsored by TLC Garden Center & Grooms Irrigation; American Plant Products, Calvert’s Plant Interiors, Kitty and Richard Champlin, Minick Materials, and Total Environment and Plant Wisdom Garden Center. In-kind sponsors are AC Hotel by Marriott OKC Bricktown and Holiday Inn Express-Bricktown.

Cost is $40 for Gardens members; $70 nonmembers; $25 students (with ID). Optional box lunches can be purchased for $15. Lunch will be in the Park House Event Center at Myriad Gardens where an Herb Market will be presented by Bill Farris, owner, and operator, Prairie Wind Nursery, Norman, Oklahoma. Registration is online at For questions call (405) 445-7080.

2019 Speakers’ Bios

Matthew Benson, Balmville, NY

Matthew is a writer, photographer, author and organic farmer whose work focuses on issues of food, sustainability, and organics. He is the owner of Stonegate Farm in New York’s Hudson River Valley, where he cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey, and medicinal flowers and herbs. His farm has been featured in The New York Times, Better Homes & Gardens, Organic Gardening, and the television show This Old House, among others.

Holly Shimizu, Glen Echo, Maryland

Holly is a nationally recognized horticulturist with a specialty in herbs and herb gardens. She was the first curator of The National Herb Garden at the U.S. National Arboretum in Washington, D.C., executive director of the U.S. Botanic Garden, and for more than 10 years was a host of the popular Victory Garden on PBS. Currently, Holly is involved in creating a new herb garden in Lewes, Delaware.

Jenny Wegley, Dallas, Texas

Jenny is vice president of horticulture operations at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. She has been recognized as one of 40 industry professionals under the age of 40 who help determine the future of horticulture. Jenny’s creativity and knowledge of plant trials have circulated in numerous industry publications throughout her career.

Lori Coats, Tuttle, Oklahoma

Lori is an Oklahoma Master Gardener who has been featured in Oklahoma Gardener Magazine and Edible OKC Magazine. She is an herbalist who owns My Raggedy Herbs, a teaching garden that demonstrates backyard kitchen gardening for medicinal and culinary purposes.


2019 Schedule

Devon Auditorium, located at 333 West Sheridan and Hudson.

8–9 a.m. Breakfast and Registration

9–9:10 a.m. Welcome

9:10 a.m.  Growing Beautiful Food & Herbs

  • Speaker: Matthew Benson. Growing your own food, flowers, and herbs is a transformative experience filled with joy, folly, work, and wonder. Become inspired to live sustainably as Matthew shares his unique organic gardening adventures through vibrant photographs and reflective accounts.  Learn how he cultivated an authentic, meaningful bond with nature through the restoration of a mid-1800s estate farm in New York’s Hudson River Valley. Whether gardener, farmer, or chef, you will be motivated by the message of self-sufficiency and the beauty of food and herbs as local as your own backyard.

10:10–10:30 a.m.            

Break. Visit exhibitors.

10:30 a.m.  Maximizing Space through Historic and Modern Herb Garden Designs

  • Speaker: Holly Shimizu. Herb gardens come in many forms and arrangements, often tracing their roots to early European designs. Holly will explore the history of herb garden design using examples such as cloister gardens, estate and home gardens in Europe, as well as in Early America. Today there are interesting interpretations of these historic gardens that incorporate herbs in contemporary styles. Any of these styles can be applied to home garden designs of any size.

11:30 a.m. –1 p.m.          

Lunch at Park House Event Center at Myriad Gardens or on your own. Visit the Herb Market presented by Bill Farris, owner, and operator, Prairie Wind Nursery.

1 p.m.  Growing Herbs in a Challenging Climate

  • Speaker: Jenny Wegley. Growing herbs can be a rewarding challenge for anyone. Follow Jenny as she uncovers the trial-and-error lessons learned from a career in horticulture. Discover optimum techniques for growing a successful herb garden through the proper selection of varieties and essential maintenance practices that help produce a bountiful garden in an efficient and effective manner.

2–2:15 p.m.                      

Break. Visit exhibitors.

2:15 p.m. Bringing It All Back Home: Using The Herbs You’ve Grown

  • Speaker: Lori Coats. The hope when planting herbs is to reap the benefits of the precious plants but often those treasures remain hidden. No longer will the abundance of what your garden holds be missed. Learn best practices that have been handed down for generations to help you harvest, preserve, store and use culinary and medicinal herbs. Hear simple and practical ways for creating your own home apothecary, making delicious herbal foods and soothing remedies.

3:15–3:45 p.m.   Q&A, Wrap Up and Book Signings