Oklahoma Higher Education Campus E-Clips sponsored by the Communicators Council

October 2013

OSU-OKC Horticulture Department to Construct Arboretum Through Grant

Illustration of the shrub arboretum to be constructed on the OSU-OKC campus.

Pictured is an illustration depicting the shrub arboretum to be constructed on the OSU-OKC campus.

OSU-Oklahoma City’s horticulture department will soon begin construction on a shrub arboretum that will serve as a teaching tool for water conservation and landscaping techniques. The unique addition is made possible through a grant from the Oklahoma City Water Utilities Trust and the Oklahoma City department of utilities.

Dr. Justin Moss, assistant professor at OSU-Stillwater department of horticulture and landscape architecture, wrote the grant proposal and will be responsible for overseeing the projects.

“Our number one goal is to create a water conservation demonstration landscape that can be used as an outdoor classroom to educate Oklahoma City water utility customers of responsible outdoor water use, lawn management and landscape plant selection, and use it as an outdoor classroom for OSU-OKC horticulture students,” Moss said.

Moss will be working with OSU Extension associate and landscape architect John Schroeder, who will be leading the OSU-OKC portion of the grant in cooperation with OSU-OKC agriculture technologies division head Dave Edwards and several faculty including David Gerken, Julia Laughlin and Angie Holmberg.

Gerken believes this will be a great breakthrough for the department and is excited to be able to educate Oklahoma City utilities customers and students about water conservation, and to be able to use the land more efficiently.

“You can have the best system in the world and the best material, but if you don’t know how to use it, then it doesn’t do you any good,” Gerken said.

Formal grant reports will be submitted to the Oklahoma City Water Utilities Trust and the Oklahoma City department of utilities. Information will be available for their water customers as well as all Oklahoma citizens. The project will be completed by December 31.

The grant will be a partnership between OSU-Stillwater department of horticulture and landscape architecture, the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service and the Oklahoma City Water Utilities Trust. The arboretum will be one of several portions of land to be constructed throughout the Oklahoma City metro for teaching purposes.

To learn more about the grant, contact Gerken at gerkend@osuokc.edu or (405) 945-3352.

For more information about OSU-OKC Agriculture Technologies, visit www.osuokc.edu/agriculture.

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