WINTER HAS ARRIVED!
MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR
DECEMBER 2021 / VOLUME 177
Well, another year went by pretty fast for most of us. As 2021 winds down, it's a good time to stop and think about all of the things for which we are grateful.

So, pausing with those thoughts in mind, your Tulsa Master Gardeners would like to give a robust THANK YOU to our readers. While not everyone opens and reads the MG e-Newsletter, we have over 11,000 subscribers that receive this electronic-based horticultural information each and every month. We strive to deliver topics to the homeowner that helps them the most with their seasonal gardening activities, needs, issues and problems along with many (we hope) helpful tips.

Just a reminder that we are part of the Oklahoma State University Extension Service and are supported by an array of professionally trained horticulturists from the state university. We only deliver university research-based information that you can trust is correct and proven to work.

With that said, please feel free to share this newsletter with your family, friends and gardening partners as we continue to strive to increase our community outreach through readership. It's easy to sign up for the newsletter. Simply go to tulsamastergardeners.org, click on "Articles & e-Newsletter", then click "sign up now". It's a completely free service and you can cancel at any time.

Happy Holidays to all!
DECEMBER HORTICULTURAL
AND GARDEN TIPS

Learn about what you should be doing in the month of DECEMBER. A selection of Garden Tips (Lawn & Turf, Trees & Shrubs, Flowers, Fruits & Nuts, and more) can be found by clicking on GARDEN TIPS.
From Green Country Master Composters
A good topic to consider in the month of December is composting or recycling live Christmas trees, wreaths, and holiday greenery. Here are some websites for information on recycling Christmas greenery waste:



One tip that stood out was using only the needles for mulch. If you're using small branches in your compost, it's best to cut the branches in small pieces for easier, quicker composting and breakdown. And, for the big stuff, have the tree shredded to use the sawdust in your compost pile or mix with mulch.  

Please don't forget to compost holiday dinner scraps, but DO NOT include bones, oils, fat, meat, or animal skins in your compost pile.
 
Each month the Compost Connection article focuses on a different topic. So, if you have missed our previous monthly topics you may review those by going to to tulsamastergardeners.org. You will find a link to view past monthly articles by clicking on the e-Newsletter link.
 
We wish you Happy Holidays, and Happy Composting in the New Year! "See" you in January.

TOOL OF THE MONTH: HANDI-PAIL
A good multi-tasker is hard to beat! It may look like a humble paint pail, but it’s really a handy garden tool. This small painter’s pail is a good size for getting mulch, compost or dirt into those hard to reach spots behind and between bushes and shrubs. The curved handle makes this pail a good scoop. These inexpensive plastic pails are available at most big box, hardware, and paint stores.
GOING NUTS OVER ACORNS?
Acorns are funny products of nature. On one hand, these little guys are nature's way to help produce more trees. On the other hand, they can be a real nuisance . . . either falling and hitting your vehicles or laying everywhere on driveways, patios, and walkways or later growing into tree seedlings that you don't want or simply becoming a smorgasbord for squirrels and other wildlife.

An acorn is essentially an oak tree nut. Like other nut trees, each species of oak produces its own unique acorn, and individual acorn characteristics differ depending on species of oak. Acorns are produced by all species of oak found in Oklahoma. 

Acorn production can vary widely from year to year. Click on ACORNS to find out what happened this year
WINTER CARE FOR GARDEN
TOOLS & POTS
As much as we gardeners would like to work (I mean, piddle around) outside year round, our weather has a clever way to discourage such. It's getting close to that time that we put away our gardening tools for the winter and enjoy a good book indoors.

Good quality gardening tools are expensive and, as such, it's in our best interest to take good care of those handy little items so they last sometimes upwards of a lifetime. Let's don't forget about our hoses and pots as well.

Click on WINTER TOOL PREP for some really good tips on how best to winterize our gardening tools, outdoor hoses, and container pots for the winter.
PROPER USE OF ICE MELT PRODUCTS
Unfortunately, we live in the part of the U.S. that gets its share of ice storms. Checking the calendar, it's getting close to that time of year that we may encounter harsh weather in the form of the slippery stuff which makes it very difficult to get around, both on foot and on the road.

There is a lot of information out there that talks about nifty products that can help us fight ice to make it safer to walk. But, some products may actually do lots of harm to our precious plants that are near where these products are spread. Click on ICE MELT PRODUCTS to find out what to use and not to use this winter.
SOUTHWEST INJURY (aka SUNSCALD)
All over town one can find various examples of tree damage similarly shown in the picture above. It occurs more often in young, soft-bark trees such as maples, weeping willows and fruit trees. While it occurs many times on commercial properties, it can certainly happen to your trees as well if they are not properly protected.

Click on SOUTHWEST INJURY to learn what causes this and what you can do to protect both your beautiful trees and your investment.
FIREPLACES ASHES FOR THE GARDEN:
 A BIG NO-NO!
For several years, this article has been published early in the winter season when fireplaces are starting to be used. If you are a long-time reader, you will recognize this topic; for others it may be the first time seeing it.

To get straight to the point, as environmentally sound as it may seem to recycle fireplace ashes in your garden, it is actually a very bad idea to do so. Dispose of them in other ways. Click on FIREPLACE ASHES to find out why.
WINTER GARDENING AND
SPRING PREPARATION
With winter upon our doorstep, it's a good time to share some winter topics for your consideration and perusal. All of these have been published before. So, if you're a long-time subscriber, some articles may come in handy as a reminder of what to be doing during this season. For new time subscribers, it will give you a variety of topics to read on one of those cold, winter days and maybe inspire you to get outside on a milder day. Enjoy!


And, for those over-achievers out there, here are some handy winter topics to help prepare for next spring.


DID YOU KNOW?

Since 1983, the Tulsa Master Gardeners have been serving the public by offering research-based horticultural information to residents of Tulsa and the surrounding area. The Tulsa Master Gardener Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) organization. As such, it receives no city, state or federal funding for its Tulsa community outreach programs. In fact, the Tulsa's Master Gardener programs are self-funded by its own fundraisers, from member donations, and from public donations.

The main Tulsa Master Gardener fundraiser is its Annual Spring Plant Sale that is held each April. Other fundraisers include the Garden Tour and Garage Sale in June. And, one of the most important income sources that sometimes gets overlooked are the personal and corporate donations. These are so important in helping us to meet our financial obligations and we want you to know they are very much appreciated. 

MG Endowment Fund
 
The Tulsa Master Gardeners have been around for over three decades and we plan to be around for many more decades. Furthermore, we are considered one of the top five Master Gardener county programs in the entire nation. We are because of the size of our Foundation membership, the number, diversity and activity level of our various community outreach programs, and our overall financial strength! 
 
So, we are pleased to announce, in partnership with the Tulsa Community Foundation, the Master Gardener Foundation has established an Endowment Fund to ensure our long-term financial strength. Our plans are to build this fund for many years before making any withdrawals from it. Please consider us as you make your annual gift giving as well as longer-term estate planning decisions. Remember, all donations are fully tax deductible! 
 
If you wish to make a tax-deductible donation to help fund the long-term success of the Tulsa Master Gardener program, click on  
 
If you wish to make a tax-deductible donation to help fund the Tulsa Master Gardener program's annual expenses, click on
 
We thank all of you for having been such faithful contributors both in the past and in advance for your future consideration and participation! Proud to be a part of the Tulsa area - such a giving community!

MG GENERAL FUND
Susan Forman
Robert Stewart
Judy Feuquay
Cindy Lilly
JIll Tenzythoff
Judi Hofer


MG ENDOWMENT FUND
Kristen Wirth
Susan Forman
Jennifer McNamara
Patricia Friend
Vija Sevier
Diane Hambric



========================================================  Oklahoma State University, in compliance with Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Executive Order 11246 as amended, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, and other federal laws and regulations, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, age, religion, disability, or status as a veteran in any of its policies, practices or procedures. This includes but is not limited to admissions, employment, financial aid, and educational services.
========================================================