The garden is a Memorial Garden, a garden of benevolence, garden of love. It is a gift to our community from the God of Love, Jesus the Christ. The first “seeds” for our garden have come from members of the congregation and a designation from the congregation’s memorial funds. These seeds have brought us to the beginning of a journey that will last for many years. Guided by the Holy Spirit we will plow forth until row upon row of our work is accomplished and our community is better nourished. The Lord invites you all to be part of His work on earth strengthening and feeding His children.

Monday, March 20, 2017

"Lean to" Greenhouse

I spent some time with Ira Edwards yesterday. He was very generous with seeds for the garden. Thank you Ira! We also talked about season extending things for the garden. He make use of his garage wall to make "portable" lean to greenhouses. After talking with him I think I will do an experiment this year on the north edge of the garden. Will try to grow some cucumbers in a make shift lean to style greenhouse like Ira does. I will have it open on the ends most days so won't have to do any hand pollination. Since that will make it easy for our lady pollinators to get in there. Also will be experimenting with a number of types of peppers this year. Hopefully we will be broadening our horizons and harvest for the fall.

Today it's almost 30° F. Come on spring!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Chilly March

March this year has certainly been different from the past two. Temperatures that are 10 to 15 degrees below "normal" makes one feel that winter will never be over. I am anxious to get dirt under my finger nails again. Seems that it will be a while before that happens. The garden looks the same as it did last month so no new pics today.

Even though it's cold the preparations are beginning. I have a new drop spreader to use on the lawn at church. I also have a seed planter that I will use in the garden this spring. It still needs to be assembled but it is in the box awaiting a screwdriver. There seem to be more and more gardening meetings to attend. I went to a seed exchange last evening and heard a talk on lighting for inside gardening and one on adaptive gardening for persons that are disabled or unwilling to get down on the ground. Both were interesting and informative.

I am turning bowls from the trees that were harvested from the garden area. The spring sale will help defray the costs of the garden. Will have the bowls for sale at church and will be attending Synod Assembly in Juneau at the end of April to sell there. By the end of the week there will be 100 or more. I hope to have about 200 by the time I go to Juneau. I will be taking some larger ones that are not from the garden trees just in case some wish to buy bigger bowls.

Still researching varieties of veggies to plant. Have some sources for seeds that are priced right. Hopefully there will be some that are useful.

Looking for warmer weather and thawed ground in the garden.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Winter in the Garden

It has been a much colder winter than we have had in a number of years. Some would say much more "normal", whatever that may mean. The ground was frozen in the garden just a week after we got the new fence up. Unfortunately the snow was late so I'm sure the frost is much deeper than I would have liked. Perhaps we will have a warm "spring" and the earth will warm quickly. I am anxious to get to work in the soil and plant seeds of the new harvest.

Even with the snow and the cold essential tasks for the garden are taking place. I will be ordering a planter this week so we won't have to crawl on the ground to put in the seeds. I have also been researching new varieties of veggies to harvest in the fall. The usual things will be done but there will also be beans, possibly peas. I will try a different type of "winter" squash this year, possibly spaghetti squash. Fruit trees will be planted as well this year.

The fruit trees will probably be apples. The exact variety has yet to be determined. The trees are a long term effort. I will take at least 5 years before there will be a harvest. This will give incentive to keep things going when I am no longer able to plant or harvest. I do hope that will be many years in the future. The trees will remain as a sort of legacy even after I have departed this wonderful planet to be with the Lord.

We will have honey bees this coming summer. One hive is already in place and the last I heard the bees were still buzzing in the hive. They, like us, are awaiting the warm spring rays of the sun to begin their summer nectar harvest and the sweet result of their labors. Pollinators are always welcome in the garden.

I will try another type of peppers this year as well. There will always be experiments with species that are marginal for our area. Often a warm summer like 2016 will make marginal variety very successful. We can only hope. If you have ideas about what might work well in the garden let me know. You can leave a comment on this blog or call the church office to leave me a message. All suggestions will be considered.

March will bring warmer weather and we will all be itchy to get out in the sun and make things happen. April will bring the beginnings of visible work in the garden. Be sure to come by church and check things out even during the winter.

Be safe. Enjoy the snow. Above all, thank the Lord for the bounty he has provided us through the years. I thank Him for His love and for all the gifts He showers on each of us every day.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Final Harvest of 2016

Once again I am amazed at the Grace of God. Our harvest for the year has been 2348 pounds of produce. The potatoes were the last thing brought in and the weight was in the area of 300 pounds. The squash was definitely the bulk of the harvest for this year. There were more squash plants than any other single item that was a continuous harvest plant.

In 2017 I will try to keep track of harvest for each variety. I will try to keep better records all the way around for the garden. It seems there was just too much to do. I will write a list for 2017 of the steps for each process so I can pass them on to subsequent gardeners and they will be available for volunteers that work in the garden the summer of 2017.

One of my New Year's Resolutions is to make more entries in this blog as well. That should help in the future with the process of making things work and hopefully running smoothly. Even though now it is deep into winter there are things going on to make the garden better in the future. Thanks for reading and hopefully there will be more to read in the near future.

Time to start researching seeds and cultivars to plant for the coming year. God bless all.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Spectacular August

August 29 Harvest
 It's been some time since my last post. August brought with it some rain so I did not water the garden at all during the month. There was no need. The harvest has continued with nearly 1500 pounds of produce to LSSA Food Pantry through the 31st of August. The total will easily be over a ton before the harvest is complete. Things have gone very well and I am already formulating planned changes for next year to make the harvest better and have more variety. Again pictures will give you more information than my rambling on about how fantastic the Lord has been in nurturing the garden along. There is one picture of the August 29th harvest that also shows off the new kitchen at church. The August 29th harvest was 90 pounds.
One potato plant harvest

Technically the potatoes are from September but I had to include it. That's 9 pounds of potatoes from one plant and there are probably 50 of those in the garden. That will translate into a lot of potatoes. Will let you know more next month.

Our God is so great, so strong, and so mighty there is nothing that he cannot do!!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

July Is Amazing

Cabbage and Cauliflower
First Carrots of the Year
Add caption

The month of July has been amazing in the garden. We have had no problems with any four legged animals and so far no problems with any two legged ones either. Hopefully the four legged variety will stay out with the fence up now. The success of the garden is beyond my wildest imagination. Every vegetable we have planted is or has done very well. This will once again be mostly a pictorial post as indeed the pictures tell the story of the harvest. The total as of July 27 has been 845.5 pounds of food. I am told by the people at the Lutheran Social Services of Alaska (LSSA) Food Pantry that the fresh produce is greatly appreciated. When I have been at LSSA when there are clients present they have certainly made their thanks know to me. I especially thank every one that has contributed time and other resources to the success of the garden. Thank you so much for your help and generosity.


More Zucchini

Friday, July 1, 2016

Planting, Fencing, Harvesting

May 31 Garden

June 8 Fencing
I rented the tractor again. This time with a bucket on the front and a rototiller on the back.

The garden is moving right along. We have planted so far: 2+ rows of potatoes, 2 rows of acorn squash, 4 rows of different types of zucchini, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, and maybe some brussel sprouts. There are also radishes, beets, and lettuce. Yet to be put in the ground are carrots, parsnips, kale, collards, and some other stuff. Seems like a lot but it has gone so fast. Special thanks go out Jennifer Wardell, Sharon Starry, and Bonnie Bladow for all of their help with planting and preparation.
June 8 Garden

Everything we have planted including this list: collards, chard, kale, parsnips, and carrots are now above ground. They are not much above ground by they are up.

A special thank you to Nathan Rasmussen for welding the lawn mower and for installing the the plumbing on the hydrant behind the church. He is working on a couple of other tasks as well related to the garden and the lawn maintenance.

Special thanks as well to Scott Clendaniel, Richard Clendaniel,
June 22 Garden
Ryan Starry, Ty Wardell, Rod Voshell, John Hoopes, and Bonnie Bladow for their assistance on the fence.

Have been very busy the last 6 weeks so have neglected posting to this. Hope you all do not mind.

There is much more of the fence to do but it is coming along. The rest will be a pictorial view of the garden as of Friday, July 1, 2016.

June 30 Garden Rear View

June 30 Garden Front View

Broccoli and First Zucchini

First 33 Pounds to LSSA