Berries of Northwest Alaska

As the sun begins to set in August, and us “northerners” finally experience some darkness, the berries of northwest Alaska begin to flourish.   The sun sets for about 5 hours now, which is both good and bad.   Good, because the berries we gather near the coast are able to turn on the afterburners, so to speak, in terms of growing.   They soak up the sun during the day, and rest at night, similar to those of us who are busy all summer long.   Bad, because it Read More …

High Bush Cranberries

High bush cranberries are harder to make use of than their low bush cousins. They have a pit inside of them that makes them less appealing to throw in a batch of muffins or over the morning granola and are, at least to my tastebuds, tarter. Despite these limitations they are all over our neighborhood. Most people won’t reveal their super secret berry picking spots, but for high bush cranberries you can walk along many power-line cuts in Fairbanks for easy access to prime berry picking. In just under 30 Read More …

Getting KREATIVE with KALE

This year my garden is exploding with kale! We have so much of it that you would have to eat salad every day of the week for the rest of the year just to use it up (or so it seems). For this blog post, I will be focusing on kale, its benefits, and what you can do to change up the way you eat kale. Kale is a phenomenal plant. It thrives in Alaska’s chillier climate and can be planted early in the season when the ground is still Read More …

Japanese Mugwort-culinary delights

What is the Japanese Mugwort? Japanese Mugwort is a flavorful perennial herb that has green, fuzzy, finely cut leaves. The hardy plant thrives in most climates and is traditionally used in eastern medicine. I am interested in Asian vegetables and herbs. I have Japanese Mugwort in my garden. I have started this Mugwort from seed. Seeds were bought from Kitazawa Seed Company* and this is the third year I am harvesting. I just harvested this Mugwort and am going to make it into powder and then bake Mugwort bread. Cultivation Read More …

Enjoying the Taste of Summer Throughout the Winter: Food Preservation in Southeast Alaska

by Katie Craney, an Alaska Master Gardener All of the hard work has paid off, its harvest time! I’ve found that I enjoy planting my garden just as much as figuring out ways to keep the freshness and flavors of summer and fall going through the winter. As a gardener and forager, I spend so much time planning and waiting for the right time to pick that I feel I owe it to myself to get the most out of every effort! It can feel a little overwhelming during harvest, Read More …