• It’s time to … learn how to amend your soil and increase your production — free workshops


Your Sitka Local Foods Network reminds Sitkans that now is a great time to think about scaling up vegetable garden production with local soil amendments. Large scale production in your garden takes some forethought and requires good, productive, healthy soil. Local amendments such as seaweed, fish parts, chicken and duck manure, and other materials can help boost the production in your garden.

Lori Adams, owner and manager of Down-to-Earth U-Pick Garden, will host two discussions and hands-on workshops on large-scale garden production using local amendments at her u-pick garden at 2103 Sawmill Creek Road (across from the Mormon church). Classes will be held from 3-4 p.m. on Sunday, July 27, or at 10 a.m. on Monday, July 28.  All are welcome to come and attend these free classes.

Other topics that may be discussed include using ducks in the garden, organizing and simplifying techniques to keep costs down, and proven seed varieties for success.

Lori grew up on a farm in Oregon, and has gardened in Sitka for 20 years. Her u-pick garden has been in production for about six years. In 2012, Lori wrote a series of garden columns for the Daily Sitka Sentinel (and reprinted on the Sitka Local Foods Network website), and in 2013 she produced a book of those columns, “How to Grow Vegetables in Sitka, Alaska,” which she sells for $20 a copy at her Sitka Farmers Market booth. For information or directions to the garden, call Lori at 747-6108 or 738-2241.

The Sitka Local Foods Network education committee has been hosting a series of “It’s time to …” workshops this spring and summer designed to help local residents learn about various aspects of vegetable gardening and fruit growing. Many of these classes will be informal get-togethers at various gardens around town. Please watch our website, Facebook pageFacebook group, and local news media for information about upcoming classes. If you have an “It’s time to …” workshop you’d like to teach, contact Michelle Putz at 747-2708.

The SLFN education committee is still looking to expand our network of local volunteers who can teach classes (formal and informal) this year about growing food, please email Charles Bingham at charleswbingham3@gmail.com with info about what topics you can teach, your gardening experience, and contact information so we can add you to our database of instructors.