|My Front Yard - Sunday, March 30, 2013|
The shortest day, in my location, is about 5 1/2 hours on December 21 and we do consider it a very special day to remember as most people look forward to the time when the days start to get longer again - even if it is only psychological - it is worth toasting with a mug or two of grog.
On our longest day we get almost 20 hours of sun on June 21. The extra daylight is like adding almost 20 extra frost free days to our growing season. This is great for flowers and Anchorage is known as the hanging flower basket capital of the world - but it can also be too much light for some plants and cause some vegetables to bolt or go to seed before they are ready.
Remember this is official daylight and does not count dawn or dusk when the sun is down - but it is not dark yet. In June it really doesn't get completely dark all night. In December it is light past the official sunrise and sunset times. We are past 12 hours of sun right now and it is 40 degrees outside. That is plenty of light to grow plants - but the ground is still covered with snow and will remain frozen until May and our average last frost date is May 20. In reality - soil warmth in Alaska is more important than daylight for gardeners.