Kimberly Toscano

Kimberly Toscano

Kimberly Toscano is a freelance writer and horticulturalist with an eye on design. Formally trained in horticulture, environmental science, and entomology, she is interested in all things edible as well as garden design and landscaping for wildlife. Kim takes a holistic approach to gardening and landscaping, working in harmony with the natural environment. This includes organic and sustainable gardening practices, careful management of water, and enhancing biodiversity in the landscape.

Before establishing a career in freelance writing, Kim served as writer and host for Oklahoma Gardening, a weekly PBS television program produced by the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service. In this role, she shared her expertise through more than 1,000 video segments covering all aspects of gardening, environmental stewardship, and sustainable living. To support her programming, Kim designed over a dozen gardens that were installed at The Botanic Garden at Oklahoma State University, including a formal terrace, an organic vegetable garden, and themed ornamental plantings. Learn more about Kim’s work at

  • Claire Grace Wild Bee Balm
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Peak-Season Perennials for the Southern Plains

    While we would all ideally have gardens that look at their peak in every season, the reality is often far from that ideal. Very few of us have all the…

  • planning a firewise landscape
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Planning a Firewise Landscape

    With urban expansion pushing communities farther into natural areas, wildfires are growing more and more problematic for homeowners. Subdivisions and individual homes surrounded by natural landscapes face special wildfire risks.…

  • blackberry varieties
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Growing Blackberries in Southern Gardens

    Blackberries are a rewarding crop to grow and one that tolerates the high heat of the Southern Plains. In recent years, improvements in pest resistance and reduced chilling requirements of…

  • protect broadleaf evergreens in winter
    Southwest Regional Reports

    How to Protect Broadleaf Evergreens from Winter Damage

    Broadleaf evergreens such as southern magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora and cvs., Zones 6–10) are a welcome sight in winter, adding color to the dormant landscape. These plants, however, are often susceptible…

  • shrubs with berries
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Hardy Shrubs With Showy Berries

    Looking to brighten up the fall and winter garden? Consider adding fruit-producing shrubs to your plant palette. Flowering shrubs that develop colorful fall and winter berries not only add beauty…

  • growing shallots
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Growing Shallots in the Southern Plains

    Shallots (Allium cepa var. aggregatum and cvs.) are expensive to purchase in the store, which is one reason I like to grow my own. A member of the allium or…

  • plants for migrating birds
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Plants to Fuel Migrating Birds in the Southern Plains

    Late summer through autumn, millions of birds pass through the Southern Plains on their migration to southern wintering grounds. Birds follow four main paths as they migrate. The Southern Plains…

  • summer bloomers for heat
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Best Summer-Flowering Plants for Texas and Other Drought-Prone Areas

    As temperatures soar, many plants turn to survival mode. Annuals and perennials that may have bloomed with abandon in May or June shut down production until cooler temperatures return. But…

  • gold foliage plants
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Plants With Golden Foliage That Stand Up to the Summer Sun

    Go for the gold this summer with stunning golden foliage. All too often the intense sun and heat of summer on the Southern Plains causes yellow foliage to turn a…

  • close up of penstemon flower
    Southwest Regional Reports

    Pretty Penstemon Varieties for Pollinators in the Southern Plains

    When it comes to underappreciated perennials that deserve more attention, penstemon, or beardtongue (Penstemon spp. and cvs., Zones 3–9) is among those at the top of my list. This genus…