The Garden Tour – Alaska

Westchester Lagoon

Westchester Lagoon, Anchorage

We headed to Anchorage the Wednesday before Labor Day. The weather was cool at Westchester Lagoon along the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail but the shadows intriguing. Friday we followed Turnagain Arm towards Whittier and experienced the longest tunnel in North America – 2.5 miles long! I can say my stomach was in a knot until we saw the light of day again. This tunnel was built for train traffic but all day long it is scheduled for car/truck traffic to keep Whittier connected to the ‘mainland’ Peninsula. Whittier was chilly and wet but I know it has potential on a warm summer day when you can see the water and surrounding and schedule a boat excursion.


“Log Cabin Gifts”, Whittier


Kenai Lake at Cooper Landing

The trip from Anchorage to the Kenai Peninsula was spectacular. A few clouds made way for blue skies through Turnagain Arm and Tern Lake at the Seward Cutoff. The views of never-ending mountains with glaciers, albeit melting, are amazing. Cooper Landing is the sight of Kenai Lake, the beginning of the glacier fed river. The Kenai River flows 82 miles westward from Cooper Landing to the mouth of the Kenai at Cook Inlet. Along the way it flows through Soldotna, my hometown and right next to Lingonberry Lane.


Garden fresh omelet, Homer

At the end of the road, we stopped overnight in Homer and were treated to a wonderful night’s stay with a view of Kachemak Bay. We had dinner at Two Sister’s Bakery with fresh seafood and greens – the mussels in garlic and wine were divine. We picked up some baked goods for our Sunday Brunch by the garden.

The next morning, even with cloud cover the views are stunning from West Hill Road. My cousin’s garden is lush. We were treated to a garden fresh omelet, (chickens onsite) fresh berry and melons.



View from Island Watch Vacation Rentals, Homer


Eagle on Bishops Beach, Homer

After heading back to Anchorage to meet my brother’s family again, we ventured up to Palmer on Labor Day to take in the onion harvest at Glacier Valley Farm. We marveled at the beautiful HUGE onions and my husband of farming roots complimented the soil quality. We were treated to a tour of the farming facilities and neighboring VanderWeele Farms, the largest vegetable farmer in Alaska who immigrated from the Netherlands 50 years ago. Alaska Agriculture is going strong in the Valley! We dined on cabbage, kohlrabi, kale, zucchini, summer squash, strawberries and cauliflower. The quality of the produce we enjoyed for dinner that night was tip top.


Onion Harvest at Glacier Valley Farm, Palmer


Glacier Valley Farm floral

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VanderWeele Farms, Palmer

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Alaska Garden TourOur Alaska mini-break was a complete success. The best part of the long weekend was the relationship with my Alaska family.  By circumstance we connected through beautiful gardens.

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