Juneau needs the flowers in hanging baskets, containers by shops, turn outs, docks, beds in the meridians, etc. planted by the Parks and Recreation Department around town. We all need the flowers to feed our spirits, hearts and souls. Juneau's downtown was rather grim looking in the 1950's before expanding into landscaping and what a great job has been done.
The beds would look empty after a passer bye yanks out a vegetable whenever they want. We do not have a three-season growing period in Alaska. It is costly, takes extra staffing and another separate growing space to keep beds filled with pretty vegetables as the great kitchen gardens that can be toured at castles in Europe.
As a master gardener, who grows mainly vegetables, I recommend growing produce gardens at the Juneau Community Garden, in small neighborhoods, home associations, churches, schools, etc. There needs to be some common ground available and shared by the users. Also, some of the vegetables and herbs suggested in the letter do not grow in Southeast Alaska.
Darren Snyder at the Cooperative Extension Office has been working with several groups in Juneau on starting small neighborhood gardens. Example areas include: Douglas, Crow Hill, The Glory Hole and Evergreen Park.
Member of Southeast Alaska Master Gardeners
This letter is in response to a letter published in Monday's Empire titled: "Juneau needs herbs and veggies instead of more flowers." It can be read online at www.juneauempire.com/ stories/082310/let_699161535.shtml