Monday, May 12, 2014

Beans for Mother's Day

On Mother's Day, I planted the first of our beans—pole beans. This year I'm growing Purple Trionfino and Rattlesnake beans. I like these because they're purple, which makes them easy to pick. Every year that I've grown beans I've lost my trellis to severe thunderstorms, so this year I'm trying something different—bamboo teepees. Yup, I'm finally growing my pole beans on poles. The teepees have 6 poles each, and I planted 6 seeds per pole as the packet instructed. That sure seems like a lot of beans. Of course, less than 24 hours after planting a line of sever weather came marching through, and the teepees seem to be taking it well. Once it stops raining and it's a little less soggy outside, I'll plant the next round of beans—favas (first time growing those).

Yesterday I also transplanted four heads of red leaf lettuce, seeded three square feet of chard (4 seeds per foot), and planted nine square feet of beets (9 seeds per foot). I potted up about half of the pepper seedlings, and will do the rest later this week. The biggest task was to move a bunch of woodchips from the back of our lot line (where the landscaper got a little overzealous and encroached on our neighbor's lot) to the front of the garden to give the hedge some growing room. My job was easy—lay down newspaper 20" from the hedge line. Aaron actually hauled all the woodchips from back to front. He did an excellent job.

On Thursday, my father-in-law delivered the new arbor and gate he made for us. Isn't it gorgeous?
The gate (not pictured) will be attached to two 4 x 4's that need to be dug into the ground. They'll attach directly to the front of the gate. This year, I'm planning to grow Morning Glories up and over the arbor (I got some seeds for free with a Seed Savers order). Next year, perhaps beans, malabar spinach, or even some squash or melons. Once those posts are in the ground, nothing will pull this over.

Since I'm linking this to Daphne's Harvest Monday post, I should talk about what I harvested.
See that fresh basil on top of the chicken parmesan? I harvested the tops of three seedlings so I could garnish the dinner I made for me and my parents. It was a useful harvest, not just because it was DELICIOUS, but because I normally pick the top off the basil early to encourage it to branch out and form additional stems. For the record, the sauce was homemade, but from a local farmer's tomatoes because I didn't have a garden last year.


10 comments:

  1. I, too, grow Rattlesnake beans. I start with 6 seeds/pole and but thin down to the 3 strongest when the plants' tendrils start to wrap around the pole. Sometimes the cutworms do the job for me. Six pants/pole is too much for most trellises.

    You can see my trellises at http://marysveggiegarden.wordpress.com/2011/06/21/a-pole-bean-teepee/ . And yes, one occasionally collapses - particularly if one of the 4 poles is undersized and I place it on the down-slope side.

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    1. Awesome. Thanks for the tip! You've got quite a few years on me, so I'll follow your advice. :)

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  2. I love your arch. I have one at the entrance to my garden. I don't have a sign though. I do want one.

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    1. It's nice to have a retired father-in-law with a talent for woodworking :) He made the gate/sign at our first garden (pictured in the header on this blog)

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  3. The arch is fabulous and it's going to be beautiful with morning glories rambling over it. I love the view into your beautifully laid out garden.

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    1. Thanks, Michelle! I can't wait for the hedge on the outside to fill in. Then it will feel like a sanctuary :)

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  4. Love the arbor and that sign is fantastic!

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  5. What a gorgeous arbor! I've been meaning to put one or two in our new garden as well...but baby steps. I can't decide between a nice wooden one like the one you have or a simple iron one that becomes practically invisible planted with a vigorous climbing rose.

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    1. We wanted to incorporate a gate into the arbor, so that's why we went with wood. And, my father-in-law would probably be sad if we didn't ask him to make it :)

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