When out in McCarthy, Alaska, we live across the street from the Old Hardware Store, home of the Wrangell Mountains Center, an arts, science, and research facility, located in historic downtown McCarthy.
One of the many amazing things about the Wrangell Mountains Center is its summer gardens. These gardens produce a good portion of the food served at the Center each summer. Staff, visitors, program participants, and local volunteers enjoy a wide variety of home grown goodness.
Rachel is the Mistress of the Kitchen and Gardens. She is the one who grows, cooks, and serves these yummy vegetables.
This summer, I, only with the rest of the staff of the Hardware store and numerous local volunteers, have been helping Rachel water these gardens. We’ve had a very dry summer, so it takes me just about an hour a day to water the beds I have been assigned.
The gardens include a funky truck bed full of flowers.
We are very resourceful in our container usage.
These flowers are not only beautiful but also tasty in salads too.
Raised beds are a common feature of Alaskan gardens. They help keep the soil warm. I did not know this until we moved to Alaska, but vegetables keep growing as long as there is sunshine. That means even though we have a short season, lots of growing is done in the tiny window of an Alaskan summer.
No garden would be complete with out laundry hanging in the background now would it?
The birds like the gardens too, so we have to keep them covered.
These gardens feature an assortment of produce.
You’ve got to love the lettuce.
The green house is the most fragrant place in town.
And an upside down tomato plant.
My absolute favorite are these yummy cherry tomatoes.
Once these goodies are harvested, Rachel makes all kinds of delicious meals right here in the Wrangell Mountain Center kitchen.
It’s pouring right now, absolutely dumping. That means no watering for tonight.
How is your garden growing? Are you getting to enjoy the harvests of this time of year? I’d love to hear your gardening stories too.
I’m not a gardener, I live on the top floor of a brownstone in the Bed-Stuy neighborhood of Brooklyn, and that looks amazing to me!
I’m not a gardener (yet), I’m just a waterer, but it amazing to me too! Thank you Leslie!
What a nice tribute to Rachel , Kristen and the hosts of volunteers that made this year’s garden a great success.
You’ve got that right! The staff and volunteers at the Hardware Store this year are amazing!
How yummy to have that huge variety of vegetables growing! Thanks for sharing that with us. I have a large (only flower this year) garden, and with our drought in CA, I spend quite a bit of time watering every day (and hoping my well does not run dry!) I am looking forward to fall, when I hear there might be some rain heading our way.
We’ve been missing the rain this year too. It is highly unusual to have so little rain, and of course that makes the danger of fire very real. I love a good flower garden! Thank you Debby for stopping by! I hope the rains come your way this fall.
Ooh, lovely pictures. Heh, nice flower truck!
Interesting about the raised beds staying warmer – I hadn’t thought of that.
I don’t really have a garden, but I have pots full of herbs – oregano, thyme, basil, mint, tarragon, and parsley. I’d keep rosemary & cliantro if they didn’t keep dying on me. It’s nice to be able to just go out and cut what I need. Look at those pretty nasturtiums. They grow wild here in San Francisco and take over entire hillsides, no joke. OH! And my little avocado seedling is still going strong. It still kind of blows my mind that I can leave avocado plants outside all year.
Herbs are great! Fresh ones can really make the difference in almost every dish they are used in. I don’t think we could ever grown an avocado, but we have peppers growing in our office which is very nice. Thank you Carrie for stopping by an commenting!
It all looks scrumptious!
Thank you Lois! I hope you and the kit cats are doing good!
Hi Maria… Such a wonderful story and the photos show that you live in a community that is focused on health, community closeness and respect for the planet we live on… everything looks so beautifully cared for and the variety is wonderful. Many congrats to all of the team including Rachel and yes, the garden water’ers! Great choice of your summer residence and hello to all of the McCarthy families and friends!
Keeping the local Farmers Market busy with my purchases this year as a fracture recovery year continues!
Bethany in Kingston, ON