Cooperative Extension Service

Farmers Almanac

New gardeners who sprouted green thumbs during the pandemic will soon face their first Kenai frost.

Night-time temperatures could dip into the high 20s this week in the Kenai-Soldotna area. For the scores of newbies who just started gardening during the pandemic, this might mean learning to clean up outdoor beds, bring plants inside and prep early for next spring.

Aspiring gardeners everywhere used this stay-at-home summer to get planting for the first time, with Alaskans especially reaping the benefits of the long summer days. Renae Wall, secretary of the Central Peninsula Garden Club, said there’s been increased activity in the club’s Facebook group, where local gardeners commiserate about the approaching cold and share advice about transitioning to fall.

“Really, the preparation is just dealing with all your harvest,” Wall said. “That’s the fun thing about talking to other gardeners, is finding out how they put away their harvests. You can do it in a root cellar, you can blanch and freeze, you can dry, you can pickle, there’s lots of different creative ways people do it and add their own variety.”

Kenai Peninsula Fair

The latest victim of pandemic-related closures is the annual Kenai Peninsula Fair in Ninilchik.

The board for the fair announced the closure Tuesday, saying in a statement that the decision was difficult. The fair’s been going on for nearly seven decades and is usually one of two big gatherings in Ninilchik each year, the other being music festival Salmonfest. Salmonfest announced its cancellation in May, and the fair had delayed the decision, hoping things would get better.

Bugged by summer

Jun 13, 2019
Jenny Neyman/KDLL

You take the good with the bad in Alaska summers — the salmon are returning, the sun is at least periodically shining and daylight is nearly endless. But there are a few million obstacles to being outside enjoying those things.

Seemingly overnight, our blissfully mosquito-free spring took a turn for the annoying.