Delaware County
Master Gardeners


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Welcome!

Delaware Master Gardeners are avid about horticulture and eager learners. This site is one way we share these passions and provide "environmentally sound, research-based gardening practices" with our communities.


2021 Plant Sale is coming!!!

Saturday, July 31 | 9 am - 4 pm

Delaware County Fairgrounds
Pig and Lamb Barn
236 Pennsylvania Avenue
Delaware, OH 43015

Follow our Facebook page for info about the sale and plants


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Programs

The Lunch and Learn Series on Friday June 25th at noon will feature the owners of Scioto Gardens as they talk about native plants. This is an IN-PERSON event. Scioto Gardens is located at 3351 State Route 37 West, Delaware, Ohio 43015.

Ask a Master Gardener Volunteer

Answering the public's questions about gardening using science-based information is an important objective of the Ohio State University Extension Master Gardener Volunteer program. Submit your landscape, yard, and garden questions here.

June 21-27, 2021 is Pollinator Week

Worldwide, approximately 1,000 plants grown for food, beverages, fibers, spices, and medicines need to be pollinated by animals in order to produce the goods on which we depend. About 75% of all flowering plants rely on animal pollinators and over 200,000 species of animals act as pollinators. What everyone can do for pollinators: watch for pollinators, reduce your impact, plant for pollinators . (from "Pollination Facts for Gardeners," www.pollinator.org)

Learn more about pollinators on our education page and at www.pollinator.org.

From Bee City and Xerces Society

Human Dimensions of Pollinator Conservation

June 17, 2021 10 - 11 AM (PDT)

Join guest speaker, Shannon Westlake, to learn about the human side of pollinator conservation and the various actions you can take to get more involved with supporting our native insect pollinator friends.


Pollinator Week Panel: Ask Us Anything about Pollinators

June 23, 2021 5 - 6 PM (PDT)

During this Q&A, participants will have the opportunity to directly ask Xerces staff about anything and everything related to pollinator conservation, native habitat restoration, pesticide use and impacts, climate change resilience, grazing management, and more.

Plant Spotlight: Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

Laura Rosenheck, Delaware County Master Gardener

I grew Butterfly Weed from seed for the first time last growing season to attract Monarch butterflies and to provide a food source for their caterpillars. After a 30-day cold and moist stratification period, I started the seeds under grow lights in my basement in early spring and, by May, I had about 5 plants at least 6 inches tall ready for transfer to an east-facing bed I had dedicated in the back of my house. Once planted outdoors, the small plants thrived with little to no extra maintenance from me. Boy, what a spectacle these plants provided! Not only did they provide color interest in my yard, but they also at-tracted so much life to my garden – it was so fun to watch!

Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa)

Butterfly Weed is a perennial with a low mounded profile that can make as many as 20 stems at an average height of 2 feet when mature and planted in an ideal location. The flowers are most often a distinctive bright orange but there is some variation in flower color, from deep red-orange to yellow. The leaves are somewhat narrow, up to 1” and tapered, with no stem and dark green in color. Its dis-tinctive color and the absence of the typical milky white sap that other Milkweed species have make identification easy.

This is a great Milkweed for a sunny location in a dry area. It prefers sandy, loamy or rocky limestone soils in full fun and blooms June-August. It is hardy from zone 3 to 9. It tends to be deer resistant, though seem to heavily attract the butterflies, bees, birds and aphids! The vivid orange color and abil-ity to attract and sustain butterflies make this plant a well-known favorite for all types of gardens.

In older plants, the long tap root can extend down many feet. Due to this deep, drought-tolerant tap root, it can be late to emerge in the spring, so be patient. Butterfly Weed can be transplanted if dug carefully during dormancy but if the tap root breaks off, they will regrow. At the end of the growing sea-son, seed pods may be cut or twisted off to stop seeding or use twist ties or rubber bands to bind the pods for seed collection. In addition to artificial stratification, seeds may be sowed directly in the fall. Butterfly Weed may be divided by using a sharp knife to slice down the length of the root. Every piece that has at least one eye, some of the taproot, and a few side roots is a viable division.

From The Weed Detective

Nancy Reynolds, Delaware County Master Gardener

About 15 years ago, when I was first doing my deep-dive study of weeds, I went to a program where I was introduced to this very pretty and unusual weed called carpetweed. I was very intrigued and decided to bring home a plant to study it more closely. After analyzing the leaf structure, stems and roots, I tossed it into my compost pile. I have spent the last 15 years pulling it out of my beds. My neighbors give me the stink eye every time they are working in their yards as, they too, have spent the last 15 years pulling it. Sigh!

Carpetweed (Mollugo verticillate)

Carpetweed, Mollugo verticillate, is a prostrate annual that forms dense circular mats of foliage. In other words, it forms a thick, low-growing carpet. And, it grows FAST! It initially intrigued me because it is one of very few weeds with a “whorled” leaf structure. It is particularly invasive be-cause it flowers (inconspicuously) prolifically from late June – September and the flowers pro-duce round seeds that STICK TO EVERYTHING! I can tell you that the seeds are virtually im-possible to pick off clothing. They don’t even come off in the washing machine. Therefore, the seeds are easily transported by animals and hu-mans to other locations.

Carpetweed is a particular nuisance in cultivated areas such as farm fields, garden beds or newly seeded lawns. It is commonly confused with Catchweed Bedstraw (Calium aparine). Catch-weed bedstraw has a square stem while carpet-weed stems are round. The only good thing to be said for carpetweed is that it is easily pulled by hand. Which is a good thing because if you have it in your yard, you will be pulling lots of it.