To get a copy of my book, "How To Grow Vegetables In Sitka, Alaska" just give me a call....The books are $20 plus tax. If you live out of town and want me to mail you a copy, mail a check for $25.60 to:

Lori Adams
P O Box 6021
Sitka, Alaska

Down To Earth U-Pick Garden is located at 2103 Sawmill Creek Road in Sitka, Alaska. It is open usually from mid-June through late August. Hours are Monday-Saturday 11:00 to 6:00. On Farmer's Market Saturdays I am not open until 3:00. Children are welcome but may not run through the garden or chase the ducks. If you have any questions you can contact me, Lori Adams, at 907-747-6108 or 907-738-2241. My email address is

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

15 Lights

A couple of years ago I bought a really cool door to put in the sunroom....

You can read all about it here. Since it was purchased, the door has been leaning up against the bed in our bedroom.  The other day right before leaving town, Mr. Adams casually mentioned that it would be really nice if "that door wasn't in the bedroom when I get back".  It really has taken me WAY too long to install it, was the day!

The first thing I had to do was replace the sill plate, or threshold.

Besides being in really bad shape, it was higher than the floor which made it impossible to sweep the dirt out the door. The new one has a much lower profile...

Next, I had to trim the door down just a smidge. It's very difficult to buy an old door that's the EXACT same dimensions as your old door, but this new door is made out of solid wood, so trimming it down wasn't a problem.

Next, I masked the "lights". Each window pane is called a "light". This door is a 15-light door.

A job is only as good as your prep work. I hate prep work.

4 coats of spray paint later....ta da!

Once it was dry enough to handle, Ben helped me muscle it into the sunroom. And then, presto-chango!


Of course, I forgot to take a "before" photo, and I couldn't find a good one in my photo files....the door is almost always open! This is the best photo I could find that shows what it used to look like.

Yes, I know, I need to repaint the white trimwork now.....thanks for noticing.

The inside of the door will have to remain unpainted until I have time to get to it this winter. I need to decide what color to paint it.....maybe blue?

One of the reasons I wanted a new door is so that Kitty can look outside on cold and rainy days.

You're welcome, Kitty.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

A Little Of This And A Little Of That.........

Things are still busy here at the U-pick Garden, but not as hectic as they were earlier. And, there are not as many vegetables left to pick, so I have decided that Saturday, August 30 will be the last day the garden will be open.

Here's a little bit of what's been going on around here, in-between rain storms of Biblical proportions, that is.....

My good friend, Ardel, has a pet Peking duck named, "Lily". Lily is SO friendly! She loves to be petted and she follows Ardel around just like a dog!

Ardel and his parents brought Lily over for me to meet her. She took a swim in the duck pond while she was here, and I think she really liked it!

How adorable is that?!

As for my ducks.....there's been a little of this going on.

Hey, don't judge me....ducks are delicious.

The Tayberries are ready. The Tayberries is a cross between a Raspberry and a Blackberry. It is the closest thing to a Blackberry that we can grow here in Sitka. Sometimes customers pick them thinking that they are Raspberries....and boy, do they get a surprise when they eat one!....they're VERY sour when they are still red! When they are ripe they are almost black.

The second planting of Lettuce is up, beautiful, and ready to be picked.

I've picked about a ton of these.......Red Huckleberries. I usually get two 5-gallon buckets full off our property each year. They make a great extender for my Raspberries...I use them 1/2 and 1/2 for my jam.

The ducks discovered how to get into the carrot row recently.....

They don't eat the carrots, but they root around in the dirt looking for critters, and they trample down all the foliage as they go.

It reminds me of the story of the parting of the Red Sea.

I think I will repost this photo again, just out of revenge.....

There, that felt good.  

There are Morning Glories blooming in the sunroom right now. They are SO beautiful! It's too bad the blooms only last for one day.

Well, it's Saturday night and it's starting to rain again, so I think I will crawl under a quilt on the couch and relax for a while while I plan on what needs to get done NEXT week!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Whoa!.......Slow Down A Little Bit!

The last 2 weeks have just been busy, busy, busy!! And the hours have been brutal! I was lucky if I got one meal a day squeezed in.  There were deliveries....

Picking and harvesting...

Dog walking.....

And tinkering on old trucks...

My neighbor was showing me how it's done.

And then yesterday I looked around and I was shocked at how bare the garden is starting to look. There are blank spots and weeds where there used to be vegetables! What happened?

 And then, today was the Farmer's market. I sold out of the truck today.... outside.

And of course the wind blew and the rain fell...

But it was still fun.

When I finally got home I as I crashed on the couch to watch a movie and started to eat. I just ate and ate. And then, when I returned drove into town to return the movies I sneaked through the drive-thru at McDonald's and grabbed 2 burgers. I guess I was making up for all the lost meals this week.

Good grief....I think tomorrow I'll take the day off.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

It's The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year!!!

There's so many wonderful things happening at the garden right now....







And Tomatoes! ..........are just a few of the things.

But the most wonderful thing of all is...................The Garlic is ready!!!!!!!!!

And is it beautiful!?!?!?!?!!

Here's a little tutorial on how to pick garlic....


1. Choose a Garlic plant that is mature. That is kind of hard to has alot to do with what kind of weather we have been having. Normally, a mature plant has more dead leaves than live ones.

2. Place a trowel about 4 inches from the Garlic stalk. Be sure the trowel is exactly straight up and down, not at an angle, and shove it down into the ground as far as you are able to reach.

If you shove the trowel down at an angle you will probably chop the Garlic bulb in half.

3. Pry the trowel up with one hand while you pull up on the Garlic plant stalk with the other hand.

 I had to use my other hand to take the photo

4. Knock the majority of the dirt off the Garlic bulb with the trowel over the garden bed.

5. Trim the roots with a scissors to about 1 inch long.



6. Cut the Garlic stalk off with a sharp knife, leaving a stump about 3-4 inches long.

7. Blast the dirt out of the roots, and the soggy outer layers of skin off the bulb with a spray nozzle.

8. Spread the bulbs out in front of a fan to dry.

The best place for final storage is a dry, cool, dark room with a fan running to circulate the air.

"Music" is my favorite hard-neck variety....

Garlic is now on sale here at the U-pick garden for $3.00 a bulb.

p.s. I kept the biggest ones for myself.

Sorry.................not really.