McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

April 5, 2012

Share seeds, advice at newly-formed herbal meeting

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McALESTER — A local herbal society is beginning to sprout at the McAlester Public Library.

“Unofficial” members from the McAlester area of an “unofficial” organization come together every other Saturday, swap seeds, swap researched information and swap laughs and stories. On Saturday at 9 a.m., a bare-bones attendance snacked on zucchini bread made by regular member M. Forrest. Other members shared Dill, Purple Hyacinth Bean and Cleome seeds.

For now, the herbal enthusiasts are looking into the logistics of becoming an official group. Until then, they continue to meet, talk and share.

Richard Askew mentioned the use of newsprint for mulch. Askew said newspaper inks are now soy-based and are safe for gardening. Since October 2011, the McAlester News-Capital has been printed at the Muskogee Phoenix. The staff at the Phoenix say the pages, black and color, are printed with soy-based inks rather than petroleum-based. Therefore, it’s safe to say the News-Capital paper may be used for gardening after a thorough read through.

Inserts, however, may be delivered from other sources and it is unconfirmed if they are all soy-based. According to, inserts are safe and inks have made the switch to biodegradable years ago.

Most of these enthusiasts met through Oklahoma State University’s Master Gardener class and have a reasonable knowledge from those classes.

The meetings are open to the public. They meet every other Saturday at 9 a.m. at the McAlester Public Library. Their next meeting will be April 14.

For more information, contact Carolyn Hathcote at

Contact Brandy Brackett at