Gardening in the Ozarks with Vicki Garner

If you want to learn about gardening or horticulture in the Twin Lakes Area, this is the show for you. Vicki lives in Mountain Home and all of the calls are from the KTLO listening area so the information is all local.


You can hear “Gardening in the Ozarks” each Saturday morning 

from 10:00 – 11:00 on KTLO-FM, 97.9 


Click on the date below to listen to that show:


Recent episodes of Gardening in the Ozarks

Gardening in the Ozarks, Jan. 9, 2021, pt. 2

Gardening in the Ozarks, Jan. 9, 2021, pt. 1

Jack, the Car Guy, Jan. 9, 2020, pt. 2

Gardening in the Ozarks, March 23rd, 2019, Pt. 1


Click HERE to email Vicki a question!


A listener of the show sent these pictures of a cactus and a fern.


Companion Planing

Vicki’s timely gardening tips:

Jello Seed Starter:
Fill peat pots with potting soil
Put 2 seeds in each pot
Fill a salt shaker with equal parts of jello powder (not the sugar free
kind) and powered skim milk
Sprinkle the jello and milk mix on top of the peat pots, gently press
down and cover ightly with more potting soil
Cover with damp newspapers
After 4 days remove the newpapers
Keep in a warm location with temperatures between 55 and 65 degrees.

Basic Soiless Potting Mix (good to use for staraing seeds indoors) Combine
4 to 6 parts sphagnum peat moss
1 part perlite
1 part vermiculite

Repel Squash Borers
Plant radish seeds around squash plants to help repel squash borers and cucumber beetles. Don’t harvest the radishes leave them to go to seed.

Control Fungus
Control fungus gnats by placing a slice of potato on the soil surface of your houseplants. Replace the slice when it dries out.

Reduce the Severity of Powdery Mildew Infection
Milk used as a spray on zucchini plants has been found to significantly reduce the severity of powdery mildew infection. Using skim milk is just as effective and cheaper than using whole milk. Mix 1 part milk to 9 parts water and spray plants once a week.

Another home remedy for powdery mildew on squash, melons and roses is to spray the plants once a week with the following formula:
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 quart water
A few drops of liquid Ivory soap
Be sure to spray the undersides of the leaves as well as the upper surfaces. Test the formula on a few leaves first to make sure they are not too sensitive.

To help repel deer from your garden, combine in the blender:
1-2 old eggs
1/3 of a small bottle of tobasco sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons of garlic powder
Blend well. Add water and mix. Spray on plants in the early morning or in the evenings. Repeat every two weeks. Also spray again after rain.

Hot & spicy spray for insect repellant:
Puree 2 whole hot peppers and 2 cloves of garlic in blender. Add 3 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of Ivory liquid soap. Strain and put in a spray bottle. Spray all parts of the plant in the early morning and evening.

Potting soil for roses or raised beds
1/3 potting soil
1/3 compost
1/3 bagged manure

Fertilize Roses
Combine 1 tablespoon Epson salts in a gallon of water and use to fertilize roses, tomatoes and peppers. Pour in the soil around the plants. You can also use this on the foliage of roses once a month during the growing and flowering seasons.

Here’s a formula to help your roses that have black spots:
Combine 1 quart water, 1 teaspoon baking soda and 1/2 teaspoon liquid soap detergent in a spray bottle. Shake it and spray on the undersides and tops of the leaves on a cloudy day or in the evening. It is best used before you see the spots but it will keep the black from getting worse.

Insecticidal soap solution:
Combine 1 Tablespoon liquid dish soap (dawn/ajax), 1 quart water OR 4 Tablespoons liquid soap and 1 gallon water. Spray on leaves (both sides) of plants in the evening or on a cloudy day. It is a good deterrent for many insects including spider mites and thrips. Test on a few leaves of the plant to make sure it won’t burn it.

To control slugs in your garden:
Put beer in a saucer on the ground near the plants overnight and they will crawl in and drown. Or you can crumble cake yeast in a saucer, add a little bit of water and put it the garden with the same result.

Homemade weed killer:
Combine 1/2 cup salt, 1 gallon of white vinegar and a couple of squirts of liquid dish soap in a spray bottle. Use on weeds in sidewalk cracks, under the deck around the foundation and in driveway cracks. Be careful not to use this near any garden plantings or shrubs, etc.

Links from Vicki’s show:

It is best to have a soil analysis of your garden area to help your plants prosper and produce. Take several plugs of soil from different areas in your garden and put into a container. Take it to your County Extension Office. It will be analyzed for free and you will receive an print out as to the PH of your soil with recommendations.

This is the Link to the University of Arkansas’ Division of Agriculture

Here is a good website for seeds:

Here is a good website to help identify weeds:
The website has pictures, descriptions and recommendations for control and eradication.

Here is the address for for deer resistant plants:

Here is the website that has environmentally safe products you can order to help deter squirrels, moles, deer and other critters from your yard and gardens:

In order to determine if a catalog/online ordering source is really a good thing, log onto this website:
You will be directed to put in the name of the company you are thinking about ordering from and will be shown a score which is based on number/type of complaints that company has incurred.

The Garden Show is brought to you by:
Roller Funeral Home