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

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Seeds Of Today

Well, I've been pretty busy the past few weeks. March 15 is the day I start planting the bulk of my vegetable seeds indoors, and March 31 is the day I try to be finished.

I've got everything but the Zucchini, Sunflowers, and Cucumbers planted, so that's not too bad.

It's not like planting seeds is the only thing I have going on in my life!

I like to use a good quality potting soil.

Crappy potting soil is just all rocks and twigs.

Kale, Kohlrabi, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Brussel's Sprouts, Fennel, Swiss Chard, Basil, Dill, and another round of Tomatoes were planted mid March. Lettuce, Spinach and Parsley were planted late March.

All of the seeds planted in February are up and have been transplanted into bigger pots

Cilantro and Celery...

Bunching Onions and Leeks....

And Tomatoes.

The sunroom smells SO good.....

Like good, clean, dirt!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015


I'm always amazed at how important water is to me. It seems that everything I do requires alot of water. Laundry, dishes, cooking, cleaning, animals, and plants all require a steady stream of water. One of the rooms in which I use a lot of water in my house is the sunroom. But the only source for it was a faucet near the floor with a hose that had a spray nozzle attached to it. It was not very handy. So, way back in 2012, I decided to install a bona fide sink. You can read the exciting story about how I found my sink  here.

Well, as with all my projects, I had great intentions, but it took awhile to get around to actually installing the sink. In 2014 I finally got started, and succeeded in selecting the location, mounting the sink on the on the wall, and buying and installing a faucet.

Then I built a false front using old homestead posts and boards.

I think it turned out really cool!

 I love the "shabby chic" look.

Next, it was time to install the drains.

Levi was home on Spring break and offered to lend me a hand.....

Parts and pieces were everywhere.

Mr. Adams helped too...

Good job, Mr. Adams!

Then came the nasty job of crawling under the house to install the drain.

Well, that part was done! So far so good.

Next it was time to plumb in the water. And..........that's where I got hung up again. That was just a little bit out of my comfort zone, and Mr. Adams was busy with his own the project got put on hold again for awhile.

Then finally, this past weekend I made a call and got someone who knew what they were doing to come over to give me a hand.

And look at this!


A fully functional sink with running hot and cold my sunroom!

I am MORE than excited! Now I can wash the dirty eggs in the sunroom, rather than in the kitchen sink. And I can water my seedlings with warm water instead of freezing cold water from the hose. It seems like a small thing, but to me it's huge!  I love my "new" sink!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Amazing Journey Of The Sisterhood Of The Traveling Mittens

Recently, I found a pattern for these octopus mittens....

I thought they were so cool, so I bought the pattern and made myself a pair....

They turned out amazing, and I absolutely love them!

My good friend, Laura, down at the knit shop, thought they are amazing too, so I decided to make her a pair. I had some traveling to do last month, and it seemed like the perfect project to take along with me to keep my hands busy. So, here is the amazing story of the Sisterhood Of The Traveling Mittens.

The goal was to get from Sitka to Harrisburg, Pennsylvania to meet up with Mr. Adams. He was there finishing up a sport show, and we planned to spend some time in that area of the world visiting friends and seeing the sights. The first leg of the journey was from Sitka to Juneau. A short flight...just enough time to get the thumb of the first mitten done.

The next leg was from Juneau to Seattle, a bit longer of a flight. Enough time to get the tip of the first mitten done.

I had a planned layover in Seattle, Washington that was going to be longer than 12 hours, so it was necessary for me to pick up my luggage. But there was a luggage didn't show up. Oh dear. That's not a good start. Oh well, the airlines was kind enough to give me this little overnight kit.

Hmmmm. That's helpful.

The next day I headed to Harrisburg via Chicago. A long flight. In Chicago I was met with more bad news.....

My flight to Harrisburg had been cancelled. Not a big surprise....after all, the weather on the East Coast was horrible. So, a new flight was booked for the next day, and I headed to the baggage area to see if by some miracle my luggage had caught up with me.


Hmmm. Good thing I still had this stuff....

The next day I had better luck. My flight to Harrisburg was a "GO".

On that flight the lady in the row behind me was very intrigued with my crochet method.

Thankfully, the landing in Harrisburg was uneventful.

And look what was there, waiting for me....

Man, I was SO happy to get into some clean clothes!

The next day we headed to Gettysburg. The weather was cold, but absolutely beautiful!

 If you've never been to Gettysburg, you should definitely go.

It was very, very. cool.

I think you could spend weeks in that area and never see all there is to see.

The next day we went to visit our good friend, Wayne. He and his family raise veal, and we were able to tour his processing plant.

It was an impressive facility. Clean and efficient.

And then we headed for Virginia to meet up with some of Mr. Adams' friends, Dale and Sandy.
They have 2 HUGE Great Danes.

Did I mention that they're huge?

The weather was very, very, cold. But it was nice enough for Dale and Sandy to take us in to see a little bit of Washington DC.

You could spend months in Washington DC and still not see everything there is to see. On our short visit we were able to tour the Capitol.......

And the Library Of Congress.

The Architecture and artwork are simply astonishing! I have to wonder if we're even capable of that type of work anymore?

By the time we set out the next day the weather had really started to deteriorate. I spent a lot of time crocheting in the car while we creeped slowly along the highway, heading North.

 A lot of time.................enough time to finish the outside of the first mitten!

By then the traffic had basically come to a stand-still.

It got worse and worse, until we finally just pulled off and spent the night in a hotel rather than continue on to our next stop.

And then, the next day it was beautiful again! We continued on to meet our friend, Chris at his restaurant. They specialize in serving rotisserie chicken.

After a nice long visit with Chris and his wife, Sherri, we headed for rural New York, the last stop in our adventure. Mr. Adams stores his show stuff there at Lyn and Evonne's house. I don't know why I didn't get any photos at their place.  Too busy having fun visiting I guess! While we were there we stopped in to visit with Mr. Adams' friend, Bob Hoppe.

Bob was in the 1st Infantry Division (The Big Red 1), during World War II.

He survived the invasion of North Africa, served under General Patton in Sicily, stormed Omaha Beach on D-Day, and fought all the way across Europe through the Battle of the Bulge and on into Germany and Czechoslovakia. He was wounded 3 times.

As I listened to them visit, I worked on crocheting the lining for the finished mitten, using some really soft, Angora yarn.

The next day, Mr. Adams and I flew all the way home.....without incident...and all of our luggage showed up....making flying across the US look so easy! It was a long day of flying, and I was able to make quite a bit of headway on the second mitten.

Once we were home, there wasn't time to crochet....I was too busy catching up on the mail and other stuff. And, 3 days later I was on the "road" again. This time heading to Petersburg, Alaska, for the Southeast Alaska Grower's Conference. The first one ever! Mr. Adams stayed home to take care of the ducks.

Petersburg might possibly have the smallest airport I've ever seen.

 I stayed in a really nice little German Bed and Breakfast owned by a wonderful Norwegian couple.

(I have no idea what this says.....hopefully nothing bad)

The conference, organized by Bo and Marja, from Farragut Farms, was amazing!

(My new friend Sally, dubiously inspecting a Dalia tuber)

And I had a great time to meeting other growers and learning lots of great stuff.

 I gave a presentation on the U-pick model and sold a few books, and was able to do quite a bit of crocheting while I listened to the other presentations.

And then, it was time to go home again....this time to stay a while I hope! One slight inconvenience on the was home was that I had a 10 hour layover in Juneau. Oh well, it was a sunny day, so I walked the streets downtown, did a little shopping, and ate at a great little bistro.

Not a bad way to spend the day. And then finally, I was home! And the second mitten was done!

It was time to go down to the knitting shop to give them to Laura.

I think she likes them!

I told you they had an amazing journey!