THE U-Pick GARDEN will be closing August 20th. This will be the last year the garden will be open to the public. Next year I'll be operating as a CSA, supplying about 20 regular customers with weekly boxes. Thank you for your support over the last 8 years, but it's time to try something new.

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, you can 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 12:00 to 6:30. On Farmer's Market Saturdays I am not open until 2:00. 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

Friday, August 30, 2013

How To Pick Carrots

Carrots are no doubt the single most popular vegetable at the U-pick Garden. They are usually ready sometime in late July or early August and are so sweet and delicious! Jaren and her precious, adorable, little girls agreed to pose for some photos for a carrot picking tutorial......thanks girls!


1. Carrots are really easy to pick, but you have to remember that they cost 20 cents a piece regardless of size, so you need to know how to judge how big a Carrot is BEFORE you pick it. You cannot judge a Carrot's size by it's foliage. Bigger foliage does not always equal bigger carrots. Check out this one....

It has really tall foliage with fairly stocky stems, but the root is small. The best way to judge the size of a Carrot is to pull the dirt away from the base of the stem to see how big "around" the root is...

That doesn't tell you how "long" it is, but it's the best you can do. If you decide the carrot is not big enough you should cover the top of the Carrot up with dirt again, otherwise the top of the Carrot will turn green.

blurry action shot

2. Once you have selected the best carrot you can, just grab it by the stem and pull it will come out easily.

I usually only grow "Nantes" Carrot varieties. They are relatively short with blunt ends.

3. Children are welcome to pick carrots under the direct supervision of their parents. Carrots are fun, fun, fun to pick, and children have a tendency to pick handfuls at a time. These particularly sweet girls did an excellent job....most of the time they were finding bigger ones than I did!

4. Once you've picked your Carrots it's a good idea to go directly over to the hose to rinse them off.

The spray will wash the dirt off the freshly picked Carrots quickly and easily.....whereas if you wait until you get home to wash them the dirt will have dried on and you will have to scrub them to get all the dirt off.

5. Lastly, it's important to sit down in the sun for a few minutes to enjoy the fruits of your labor...

But I've got to warn can't stop with just one!

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