Heidi Zemach for SCN-
The Grazing Moose, Summer Market & Artists’ Co-operative has opened on 5th Avenue, across from City Hall. It’s the seventh year that Joanie Merritt has brought us this undertaking, traveling to Anchorage and beyond once a week to fetch starter plants and fresh organic vegetables, just picked, and fresher than one can buy in traditional grocery stores. She also has brought local and Alaskan crafts people together to sell their wares, as well as offering environmentally-friendly recycled or repurposed goods.
She has a lot of new things to offer this summer season, and plenty of the favorites from last year including pottery, soaps, jewelry, rugs made from recycled shirts, jar lids, and cloth bags that replace plastic-lined paper cups, plastic water bottles, and plastic bags.
If you want a plastic bag for your goods—you can go elsewhere, or pick up some reusable grocery bags or baskets that will assure you lower your consumption of plastic bags.
Joanie also has fresh and dried herbs, locally-made fresh specialty breads and rolls, and delectable sweets. The secret is to learn when the produce and the great breads arrive, so you can be among the first to get them before they disappear.
Most noticeable perhaps is her spiral herb-garden, fashioned from rocks found on her property. The plants that drain the best are highest up, and they drain down to the plants below that need more water. Shade-loving plants are planted in areas of the spiral that receive less direct sunlight. It promises to get even more interesting and beautiful as the plants grow and multiply.