Desiree Hagen

Weekend Host

Gardeners: Learn About Your Soil

May 14, 2021
Homer Grown

The role the Homer Soil and Water Conservation District plays in local gardening and farming is vast. Kyra Wagoner was on The Coffee Table with Desiree Hagen recently and talked about some of the services the District offers, including free soil testing. Here's an excerpt. You can hear the whole show at any time at; we have a link below.


The snow melts revealing our gardens, awaking from a long winter. For this Coffee Table, producer of KBBI's Homer Grown, Desiree Hagen is the guest host. Joining her in the studio is Kyra Wagner of Homer Soil and Water Conservation District and Francie Roberts, master gardener and former president of Homer Garden Club. They answer gardening questions generated by Desiree and the listeners. 

Homer Grown

For this episode we visit with Sonja Martin Young from Alaska Aquaponics to discuss how her goldfish and koi work in tandem with her year-round indoor grow system.

Alaska Seeds of Change chats how their hydroponic operation offers outreach, training, and mental health services to at risk youth in the Anchorage area, while simultaneously providing fresh vegetables to local restaurants and the community.

Homer Grown

We return to the garden (figuratively, of course) to discuss ways we can interact with plants despite recent 

sub-freezing temperatures.

Local horticulturalist and self-described 'garden enthusiast', Tim Alzheimer, shares methods of asexual plant propagations including use of clippings, layering and bubbling.

Tia Holley/ Indigenous Herbals

The focus for this episode is Alaska Native plant traditions and medicine. We talk with Elder Kathy Brewster of Nanwalek about medicinal plants within Supiaq/Alutiiq culture.

From 'Homergrown:' Winterizing livestock

Nov 30, 2020
Blood Sweat and Food Farms

As winter tightens its grip on the Lower Peninsula, we learn how one local pasture-land livestock farm takes care of its critters as the season turns cold, on the last episode of the year of “Homer Grown with Desiree Hagen.”
    Eyrn Young and Beau Burgess are two of the owners of Blood, Sweat, and Food Farms on East End Road.


The old adage “make hay while the sun shines,” is fine for locations that don’t have a lot of overcast and summer rain, but what does it mean for farmers on the Southern Kenai Peninsula, where summer sunshine has traditionally been a rare commodity?


On Saturday’s edition of “Homer Grown” with Desiree Hagen, we heard some tips for preserving this summer’s bounty through fermentation. Yes, fermentation -- it’s not just for sauerkraut any more.
    In Homer Grown’s “Tech Minute,” Nicole Arevalo of the Homer Soil and Water Conservation District suggested fermenting in crockery, whether vintage and found at a garage sale, or newly purchased from a potter locally.
    She said if using vintage crock pots, make sure to check them for safety.

Oceanside Farms

The third vital ingredient involved in making things grow, along with sunshine and good soil, is water. And around Homer, growers do their best to manage rainfall and snowmelt to avoid having to have water delivered. Some go so far as to catch and save rain, and at least one famer on East End Road built a pond to help store the water that he collects.

Rita Jo Shoultz/Alaska Perfect Peonies

The Homer Peony Celebration kicked off last Friday, with tours and peony art throughout the lower peninsula. The event, the first of what many hope will become an annual celebration, lasts through July 25.
    Peony farming was the topic on Saturday’s edition of Homer Grown with host Desiree Hagen. Guests were Allison Gaylord of Willow Drive Gardens, Beth Van Sandt of Scenic Place Peonies, and Rita Jo Shoultz of Alaska Perfect Peonies.
    Gaylord, who is also a founding member of the Alaska Beauty Peony Co-Op, says peony growing takes patience.

Homer Grown

Homer Grown focuses on  farming, agriculture, and everything that grows locally.
This week:
Carey Restino of Homer Hilltop Farm on seed starting and transplanting,
a Tech Minute with Brad Casar about the merits of Soil Blockers
and a chat about Invasive European Bird Cherries and Chokecherries with Katherine Shake and Nicole Arevelo from Homer Soil and Water.