MG Plant Sale

KPOV – The Point
Gardening: Get Good At It
COMGA 2014 Plant Sale
When is a Plant Sale more than a Plant Sale? When it’s the OSU Master Gardener Plant Sale.
You not only are offered unique plants, you are also given information about each variety,
taught how to grow and manage the plants you select, and you can bring garden questions and
samples to our on-site Plant Clinic. Join the OSU Master Gardeners at their annual plant sale,
Saturday, June 7th from 10am to 2pm at the Bend Senior Center. No worries, there will be
access to Larkspur Park and the Senior Center from Third Street to Reed Market Road on
A great deal of care and planning has gone into the selection of the seeds. Short season plants
have been chosen and, with the tomatoes, several varieties may tempt you - from picking and
eating right in the garden, to canning for winter dishes. Flowers have been selected not only fr
their color and beauty, but with properties that will encourage pollinators to come to your garden
site. Herbs and vegetables range from a purple Basil to a Minnesota Midget Melon. Yes there’s
even a melon that can grow quickly enough to be ready for your dining table before the snow
Here’s a brief review of some of the plants we’re selling: Our OSU Master Gardener Plant of the
Year is Lovage. What’s that you say? According to historical data, this plant has long been
cultivated in Europe and Southwest Asia. The leaves are used as an herb, the roots as a
vegetable and the seeds as a spice. Out of celery? Simply step outside and pluck off some
lovage stems or leaves, slice and add to your recipe. Wonder of wonders, this herb doesn’t
freeze out during our harsh winters and comes back year after year just waiting to be used in
soups, stews, salads or broth.
Our perennial flowers include three types of All America Seed Winners including the Echinaceas
Cheyenne Spirit and PowWow Wild Berry, and the Gaillardia Mesa Yellow. Want a hardy
Echinacea? Try the Purpurea variety which thrives in our gardens throughout the summer and
into fall. Despite the late and very hard freeze in February, my Echinacea came back hale and
hearty this spring.
Looking for veggies? We have a very sweet, early maturing yellow corn with a 67 day
maturation rate. Our popular Lemon Cucumbers will be ready in 65 days and offer a very sweet
flesh – never bitter. Be prepared to share with the neighbors or donate as these cucs really
begin producing heavily toward the end of summer.
Ready now for picking and using in your salads are Kale plus Peppermint and Bright Lights
Chard. These plants work well in pots right by the kitchen door where you can grab a few
leaves and start your salad. They also add a decorative touch with their colorful and attractive
Two kinds of squash are also early producers with the straight neck summer squash taking only
50 days and the zucchini ready at 48 days. And then there are the tomatoes – six varieties from
the small cherries (red and yellow) to the large slicers and the great canning tomato, Viva Italia.
All have fairly short season growth periods and with the head start in our greenhouse, many are
already in bloom and waiting for new homes.
The response was so positive regarding the Red Robin Tomato we sold last year, we grew over
300 of this variety for our upcoming sale. Why? This cherry tomato plant produces extra sweet
red fruit and will produce indoors all year. It grows into about an 18” high plant that fits well into
the home environment. If planted outside, you can bring the plant in before it gets too cold,
place it in a sunny window and enjoy fresh tomatoes into late winter or early spring. Try planting
these in decoragive pots for a cheerful look and show them off during the Holiday season.
Do remember our Plant Clinic and bring samples of any plant problems, insect or disease
concerns to the Clinic for help. The Master Gardener’s program’s main purpose is to teach
others how to garden successfully in our challenging Central Oregon climate. Again, please join
us at our annual Plant Sale at Larkspur Senior Center, June 7th from 10 am to 2pm. See you
For answers to any garden questions you may have, please call our OSU Master Gardener
Plant Clinic Office at 541-548-6088 or go to our website at Thanks for listening.