Some Additions to the Mountaingoat’s Collection of Common Names

It’s been almost twenty years since I first picked up a copy of Verna Pratt’s Field Guide to Alaskan Wildflowers, A Roadside Guide. While it might be a little unnecessary or even redundant to offer a literary review of one of Alaska’s most famous Master Gardeners, her introduction, penned in 1990, is just as prescient now as it was two decades ago. In her introduction, Verna makes it clear the book was created with the amateur botanist in mind. Given I satisfy amateur criteria, I don’t mind telling you, I Read More …

Alaska Botanical Garden Info

Hello everyone, Its #GardenIsShe2020, and I just wanted to share some information about The Alaska Botanical Garden, located in Anchorage, Alaska! The Alaska Botanical Garden is a living museum- meaning it showcases gardens and natural Alaskan landscapes in a educational and sustainable way. They grow botanical gardens, showcase ice sculptures and workshops, natural artist opportunities, garden journalism workshops, gardening conferences, membership and donation opportunities, children’s gardening summer camps, distance and in-person learning, botanical trails, horticulture, volunteer opportunities, beginners gardening programs, online shops, weekly guides, and moose and bears awareness, along Read More …

So, We Garden… What does that mean?

Hi everyone! Its #GardenIsShe2020- I just wanted to present this statement, “We garden.” What exactly does this mean? When someone hears the word ‘garden’ or ‘gardener’ what comes to mind? Is it Grandma hoeing her flower garden or the public school planting in the community garden? Stereotypes conflict around gardening- homesteaders, grandmothers, and preservationists, are just a few of the most common. So, what does it mean by definition to garden? The definition of garden is “a plot of ground where herbs, fruits, flowers, or vegetables are cultivated“, (Merriam-Webster). Thus Read More …

Worms inside your House? A review of UAF Cooperative Extension’s “Composting with Worms”

Want to see my worms? This was a common question I’d ask guests visiting my apartment as a vermicompost enthusiast. I was introduced to composting with worms as a young adult living in Chicago, and jumped at the opportunity to make this type of compost a staple of my urban life. I loved that it was an affordable, effective, and relatively effortless way to create nutrients for soil. And the bin fit under my bed. My vermicompost bin lasted a year and a half. When I moved to Alaska, the Read More …

A Reservoir of Information for Urban Farmers: A General Analysis of Upstart University

Intro: Upstart University Powered by Plenty Of all the searching for a reservoir of information that is relevant to large-scale vertical hydroponic and aquaponic farms, there is only one source that floats on top. Upstart University is an online college that is semi-specific of ZipGrow and Deep Water Culture systems that are primarily set up to empower those in growing food systems in all areas. The ZipFarm is a vertical water working system that Dr. Nate Storey with Bright AgroTech designed to use less space and less energy compared to Read More …

A Great Place to Get Free Information

  Free Information One of the first places my husband and I go for gardening information is the Alabama Cooperative Extension System (ACES). Why Alabama and not Alaska?   Well, I gardened for many years in Alaska but have since moved to lovely Alabama.   Each state has an Extension service with brick and mortar offices and websites.   Each Extension service is tailored to the specific climate of that state. We especially like their information because it is based on research and written by specialists. We have confidence that Read More …

Relying on Facebook for Gardening Information!

Where I started when I didn’t  know where to start. I always knew I wanted to have a vegetable garden; but when we finally bought a house with some land I didn’t know what to grow, how to grow it, and when to start. I was starting to feel a little overwhelmed because I knew most of what I would find online wouldn’t work here in Palmer due to our short summer and very long days. That’s when I turned to Facebook! I was in all sorts of Facebook groups, Read More …

A Tale of Two Interests: Resource Review of the Suburban Homestead YouTube Channel

The Stomach of Necessity The quickest way to someone’s heart is through their stomach. As someone who has worn many hats in the field of healthcare, and has passed a human anatomy class, I take issue with this phrase. However, as someone who spends the better part of their time either thinking or talking about food, I could not agree more. I began the process of learning to cook at the age of about 10. I was fed up with canned green bean casserole, and determined to exert more control Read More …

Viburnum Edule, A “Berry” Nice Garden Shrub

Highbush Cranberries “Highbush Cranberries” is a publication from the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service (CES), to which I have been referring on an annual basis for a couple of decades. The current version, revised in 2013, by Roxie Rodgers Dinstel (Extension Faculty) and Marci Johnson (Extension Program Assistant) is sitting in front of me as I blog. I have temporarily misplaced the berry-stained original that my mother handed down to me, but it will resurface, most likely stuck to another spot-on CES publication. The Stench Highbush cranberry is Read More …