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Cultivating knowledge: Garden school to show many qualities of herbs

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Oklahoma Gardening School speaker Jenny Wegley is  is vice president of horticulture operations at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden.  [Photo provided]
Oklahoma Gardening School speaker Jenny Wegley is is vice president of horticulture operations at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. [Photo provided]

Studies have shown that cinnamon can lower fasting blood sugars by 10 to 29 percent in diabetic patients.

Sage can improve brain function and memory, especially in Alzheimer’s patients. And turmeric has been shown to have powerful antioxidant properties, helping to fight oxidative damage and boosting the body's own antioxidant enzymes.

Other herbs and spices such as peppermint, ginger and basil have healing properties, as well.

“People may think of herbs as mystical and complicated,” said Lori Coats, of My Raggedy Herbs in Tuttle.

Coats, who will give a talk on growing backyard herbs during the Myriad Botanical Gardens annual garden school Saturday in Devon Auditorium, says she enjoys educating people on the many qualities of herbs.

“Even the most common herbs like sage and oregano are not only delicious but are also medicinally beneficial and are super easy to grow in Oklahoma,” she said. “When people come to my teaching garden in Tuttle, I want them to leave saying ‘I can do this!’ ”

Presented by Meinders Foundation and Devon Energy, the theme of this year’s garden school is “Growing Beautiful, Successful and Low-Maintenance Herb Gardens.” The symposium is planned for 8 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. March 9 at Devon Auditorium, 333 West Sheridan Ave. and Hudson Ave., to the west of the Devon Energy Tower in downtown Oklahoma City.

Cost is $40 for Myriad Gardens members, $70 nonmembers and $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 a Herb Market will be presented by Bill Farris, owner and operator of Prairie Wind Nursery in Norman.

Guest speakers will demonstrate how to grow purposeful herb gardens through adaptive designs, proper plant selection and precise cultivation and maintenance practices. Their illustrated talks and Q&A discussions are designed to help participants learn how to create, and maintain, more sustainable gardens in Oklahoma.

“Each spring, the Myriad Gardens proudly presents Oklahoma Gardening School and has for several years now,” said Joel Bramhall, director of education for the Myriad Botanical Gardens. “The event has grown to become a permanent staple in Oklahoma City’s downtown tapestry, inspiring not only the local horticulture community, but reaching far beyond to connect diverse interests and backgrounds in gardening. This year’s herb theme has really opened the doors to a set of national, regional and local speakers.”

In addition to Coats, speakers include writer, photographer, author and organic farmer Matthew Benson, of Balmville, New York; horticulturalist Holly Shimizu, of Glen Echo, Maryland, the first curator of The National Herb Garden at the U.S. National Arboretum in Washington, D.C., and former executive director of the U.S. Botanic Garden, and for more than 10 years; and Jenny Wegley, vice president of horticulture operations at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden.

For more information and to register, go to myriadgardens.org, or call 445-7080.

Related Photos
<strong>Holly Shimizu  [PHOTO PROVIDED]</strong>

Holly Shimizu [PHOTO PROVIDED]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a1e22acaf95c32eca8496b004c0c7879.jpg" alt="Photo - Holly Shimizu [PHOTO PROVIDED] " title=" Holly Shimizu [PHOTO PROVIDED] "><figcaption> Holly Shimizu [PHOTO PROVIDED] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-d3484021d351f677250b4aea4347761c.jpg" alt="Photo - Lori Coats [PHOTO PROVIDED] " title=" Lori Coats [PHOTO PROVIDED] "><figcaption> Lori Coats [PHOTO PROVIDED] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-0b39553d4b2e63f0479c72613a8be8de.jpg" alt="Photo - Oklahoma Gardening School speaker Jenny Wegley is is vice president of horticulture operations at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. [Photo provided] " title=" Oklahoma Gardening School speaker Jenny Wegley is is vice president of horticulture operations at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. [Photo provided] "><figcaption> Oklahoma Gardening School speaker Jenny Wegley is is vice president of horticulture operations at Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden. [Photo provided] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-c2f465fb5f5d0d3386e475fad1921cc6.jpg" alt="Photo - Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] " title=" Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] "><figcaption> Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-b95a7f3e33528822ea63a82113491db5.jpg" alt="Photo - Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] " title=" Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] "><figcaption> Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-04c9fd9405d305928152d09a3b938efd.jpg" alt="Photo - Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] " title=" Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] "><figcaption> Author and photographer Matthew Benson cultivates organic vegetables, historic fruit, raw honey and medicinal flowers and herbs at his Stonegate Farm in New York's Hudson River Valley. Benson will speak during the Myriad Botanical Garden's annual Oklahoma Garden School. [Photo provided] </figcaption></figure>
Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell is a 1987 graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma. Following graduation she moved to Kansas City and began working for The Lenexa News, a small suburban weekly. In 1988, she went at the Kansas City Star as a reporter and... Read more ›

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