Growing Season In Full Swing
With Memorial Day weekend in full swing, many local gardeners are beginning to plant.
With Memorial Day weekend in full swing, many local gardeners are beginning to plant. The holiday is usually the beginning of the growing season in Alaska because it usually marks the time when the soil is thawed enough and temps are warm enough to prevent frost damage to young plants.
Besides wild flowers, perennials, and other blooming plants and shrubs, home gardens are gaining in popularity. According to the national gardener's association, there are 90 million homes in the United States with their own garden. And 12 million of those are growing organic vegetables. No matter what people were looking to start planting, the recent weather has made for a fun start to the growing season.
"Every time, this time of year: it's probably the best time of year for a gardener,” said Pete Hitchings, store manager of the Alaska Mill & Feed.
“Everything's fresh and new and you can start things over and do things differently and try new things, it’s really exciting and when the weather cooperates, it's just a good time for everyone," he said.
"Last year we picked a lot of lettuce,” said local garden enthusiast Kim Heyalo.
“Not much else grew with the bad season last year, but yeah, we got a lot of lettuce out of our garden last year,” she said.
According to the National Gardeners Association the most popular things for people to grow to eat in the United States include tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. Surprisingly, lettuce is sixth on the list and potatoes are not tracked.