Gardening When You Don’t Have a Garden

I really struggled to find a topic for this blog post. I wanted it to be something personal and relevant to my own gardening experiences. And that’s when I realized why it was so difficult for me to find a topic: I don’t have a garden and I am not a gardener. Not in the traditional sense. I live in an apartment in south-central Anchorage and my only slices of “land’ are my east-facing deck and the counter space in my kitchen. I also travel extensively for work during the Read More …

Modern Farmsteading: Getting Started

By Sarah Richards After years of daydreaming about having a farm of our own, the day is finally upon us. Toting a little log cabin, our partially cleared acre is surrounded by the hushed boreal forest. We call it Alaska Tiny Farm. My husband and I live here with our daughters (ages seven and five), two dogs, sixteen chickens, a rabbit, and two thousand red wiggler worms. Staking its claim off a quiet dirt road on the edge of the eastern Alaska Range, our new home is both remote and Read More …

Book Review: Perennial Gardening “Easy to Follow Guide, Plant once and enjoy your plants, flowers, shrubbery, and vegetables forever’ — Susan Hollister

I purchased and read this book for the assignment from Alaska UAF Master Gardening class.   It is applicable to my garden where I try to only plant perennials; and hopefully ones that are low maintenance.   The book will be a reference for me in the future. The author covers all types of perennials: vegetables, blooming perennials, grasses, shrubs, bulbs and rhizomes, fruits and berries, and landscaping with perennials.   What I liked about the book is the detail description of the plant characteristics, what type of locations they Read More …

Chickweed. . . To kill or not to kill

This post started with my delight at the opportunity to share my successes of eliminating Stellaria media (chickweed) from my garden. I heard frustrated gardeners curse chickweed long before I experienced it for myself. Due to stories of monstrous chickweed invasions, this summer I was completely horrified to discover it near my garden, and fearful of an impending takeover. Faced with a pest, I turned to the internet where, it turns out, there are a variety of ways to confront chickweed. I will share with you my personal success, but Read More …

What’s That on my Turnip?

This past year I bought my first home  and it  came with a fenced-in garden and some raised garden beds. I was ambitious to plant a garden this year, although gardening is new territory for me. I have to admit I did not put the time and effort required into my garden. After the initial excitement of preparing the beds (at what was probably minimal standards of preparation), I planted the seeds and carried on with busy summer plans and activities. Next thing I knew June was over. Then July. Read More …

Weeds can be Wonderful

Introduction: For this post, I wanted to give a different perspective on weeds compared to most other gardeners I hear from.   Many of the classic ‘weeds’   that are dubbed lawn and garden pests such as dandelions, clover, and yarrow might not be as bad as some people think, though this is subject to what you are trying to do with your land.   We actually let these run rampant in our yard (which I suppose we are lucky to have extra space that we are trying to make Read More …

Bubbles Escaping The Bottom: The Deep Water Culture Hydroponics Story

Hydroponic gardening is what first interested me in gardening: the idea that one can take the essential ingredients for plant life, and apply them directly to that plant.  A plant needs three basic things to survive: light, water, and nutrients. When using hydroponics you are feeding that plant directly through its roots without soil. There are many types of hydroponics such as Deep Water, Ebb and Flow, and Aeroponics — each one has advantages, and disadvantages of its own, but it comes down to personal preference when choosing a setup. Read More …

Slaying in slug city: Struggles of an Alaskan gardener.

You have finally found the time to breakaway from everything else and step into your little oasis. Today you’ve allotted 1/2 hour to weed, trim and admire. You bend down to examine a young kale. To your astonishment, it’s covered in holes. Anger starts to boil inside you. You scan the ground around the plant and there’s the culprit, with slime trail in its wake. SLUGS. Gross, disgusting, aggravating to the nth degree, slugs. I’ve spent countless hours walking around my garden with a cup full of bleach, plucking and Read More …

Gardening in Alaska just got cooler with “Cool Plants for Cold Climates” by Brenda C. Adams

Are you new to gardening in Alaska? Are you often overwhelmed by all of the possibilities when trying to select annuals, perennials, trees, and shrubs? Do you enjoy spending winter evenings flipping through glossy garden photos for inspiration? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you will enjoy Cool Plants for Cold Climates, the latest book by award-winning Alaskan garden designer Brenda C. Adams. Cool Plants for Cold Climates aims to provide you with the tools necessary to create beautiful flower gardens in Alaska. Organized into five concise, Read More …