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Tyler Mason offers urban ag expertise as new Extension specialist

Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Tyler Mason, a man with brown hair, glasses and a light blue, collared, button-down shirt

Tyler Mason has an extensive background in urban crop production and educates Oklahomans on sustainable agriculture methods. (Photo by Mitchell Alcala, OSU Agriculture)


Tyler Mason joined the Oklahoma State University Extension team as the small farms and urban horticultural food crop production systems specialist in August 2023. He also serves as an assistant professor in the OSU Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture.


A native of Indiana, Mason was exposed to horticulture as an urban resident and chose to focus on agriculture education during his undergraduate degree at Purdue University. While there, he also received an associate degree in horticulture. He moved to Cheyenne, Wyoming, and worked as the assistant education director for the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens.


“That’s where I fell in love with urban agriculture,” Mason said. “I knew I wanted to spend my professional time working on vegetables and crops and teaching people sustainable practices.”


He received a master’s degree in Extension education and a doctorate in horticulture with an emphasis on vegetable crops from Colorado State University. He later served one year in the Alabama Cooperative Extension System as a county educator, specializing in urban ag and natural resources.


Fast-forward to today, Mason has jumped into his OSU Extension role by developing a garlic variety trial, conducting a study on asparagus cultivars and their establishment methods, and presenting gardening classes to OSU Extension Master Gardeners. Mason is also partnering with Mustafa Jibrin, OSU entomology and plant pathology assistant professor, to research integrated pest management strategies for squash, peppers and tomatoes.


Mason plans to host educational workshops for commercial and small-scale market growers at the OSU Student Farm this summer. His expertise in vegetable production meets the demands of a passionate Oklahoma gardening community.


“My role at OSU is a culmination of all the things I’ve been working on and building toward in my career,” Mason said. “With my exposure to urban horticulture from a young age, I know teaching people sustainable production methods is my professional goal.”

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