Oklahoma gardeners must contend with long, hot summers and short, mild winters when gardening. Oklahoma falls inside USDA hardiness zones 6 and 7, with winter low temperatures that rarely drop below -10 degrees Fahrenheit and summer highs that can climb above 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Oklahoma soil varies from clay to silty loam to rocky soil. In order to grow abundant vegetables, gardeners must adapt to their specific climate and soil types.
Select a location for your garden that is in full sun with well-drained soil.
Test your soil to determine the exact soil structure, nutrient content and pH. The Oklahoma State University maintains a soil testing facility in conjunction with their community and continuing education program. You can contact your local Oklahoma State University County Extension Agency to find out the preferred method for taking core soil samples, packaging them and submitting them.
Break up your soil to a depth of eight inches using a rototiller. Remove all rocks, sticks and debris with a rake. Spread soil amendments recommended by the test in Step 2 to improve your soil over the garden in a four-inch layer. Mix the amendments with the soil using the rototiller. Typical amendments for Oklahoma soil include compost, peat moss and manure to improve drainage, and nutrient structure and lime to raise the pH of your soil.
Select vegetable seeds and transplants that are adapted to your USDA hardiness zone. Most vegetables and seed packets state their USDA zone hardiness on the packaging. Additionally, many packages are printed with a USDA zone hardiness map.
Create furrows and drill holes for planting seed in your garden soil. Seeds that do not have planting instructions on the seed packets should be planted at a depth that is twice the seed’s width at its widest point.
Dig planting holes for transplants that are the same width and depth as the transplant’s root system. Place the roots in the hole and cover with soil.
Mulch around plants to choke out weeds that could compete with the plants for nutrients in your garden.
Water your garden weekly with one inch of water per square inch of soil.