Posted in education, Food choices, food security, garden mentor program, Gardens, Local food in Alaska projects and research, Local food in the news, Sitka Local Foods Network, tagged A.J. Bastian, Breezy, Erin Matthes, family garden mentor project, first-time gardeners, Fran Baratki, kale, lettuce, Michelle Putz, novice gardeners, potatoes, Rebecca Kubacki, rhubarb, Sitka Local Foods Network education committee, vegetable gardening on September 22, 2016|
The final batch of classes (Class Six) for the 2016 Sitka Local Foods Network garden mentor program are being set for our two participating first-year families and our three returning second-year families. The classes will be similar at each location, and they are open to the public.
There were six classes in the series, with Class Six being about preparing the garden for the winter. Class One focused on site selection, garden preparation, building planter beds, simple vegetables and soil preparation, while Class Two was about simple vegetables and planting. Class Three was about garden maintenance, with Class Four about early harvest and Class Five about the final harvest.
Our first-year gardener families (Erin Mathes and Fran Baratki), learn how to grow four hardy crops for Sitka — kale, lettuce, potatoes and rhubarb. Our three returning families (A.J. Bastian, Rebecca Kubacki and Breezy) will be planting carrots, chard, green onions and peas this year. These four crops are slightly more difficult crops to grow that our first-year plantings of kale, lettuce, potatoes and rhubarb. Even though the crops for our second-year students are more difficult to grow, many gardeners in Sitka still have good results with these vegetables. These classes are essentially the same, so feel free to attend the class that best fits your schedule.
The class schedule and location for the one first-year and three second-year families is (some classes still need to be scheduled and will be announced later):
- ERIN MATTHES (first-year family), 716 Etolin Street — CLASS 6: 9 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 25.
- FRAN BARATKI (first-year family), 180 Price Street, No. 6 (purple trailer) — CLASS 6: TBA.
- A.J. BASTIAN (second-year family), 207 Brady St. — CLASS 6: 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 28.
- REBECCA KUBACKI (second-year family), 1202 Halibut Point Rd. — CLASS 6: 4:30 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 3.
- BREEZY (second-year family), 616 Sawmill Creek Rd. — CLASS 6: TBA.
This is the third year of the garden mentor program, which provides one-to-one mentoring to families who are trying to garden for the first time. In order to reach more people, our participating families allow the classes to be made public. By teaching families the basics of gardening, we are helping them improve their family nutrition, extend their family food budget, and increase food security in Sitka.
Michelle Putz has been contracted to coordinate the program and design lesson plans. We also have about a half-dozen experienced Sitka gardeners who serve as mentors for the program. For more information, please contact Michelle at 747-2708.
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