Pole Beans and Garlic: A Garden Entry

Every year I try something new. During the fall I put garlic in the ground and wanted to update you on its growth. Currently,  I have 3-inch stalks popping up through the frosty wet ground. I think it’s pretty amazing that something will grow over the winter. This spring I pull them up to see what it’s all about. There will be so much garlic I hope I can use it all before it goes bad. I’ll have to look up ways to freeze it, though I suspect it will store well in a cool dark place. I’ll share some with friends and family too.

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This spring I will give pole beans a go. My mom has grown these for years and they don’t take up much dirt given they grow up poles. In the front of her new house they have a flag pole that was an eyesore, so they tied some string to the top and staked it at the bottom, which provided the perfect trellis for pole beans. At her previous home she used bamboo, the picture below is my mom’s garden at it’s best. The tall tower of curly greens are the pole beans. They reach for the sky! That’s my pretty mama under the pole beans, showing off some tricolor corn she grew. One day my garden will look just like this, I hope.

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I plan to put pole beans in each corner of the garden and let them grow up something I design. Still working on that. But I need to think quickly, Spring will be here before I know it.

What other projects do I have? My neighbors are getting new windows and I asked for the sashes they are replacing and they said yes! I will have several windows to build my own cold frame ready for the fall and maybe a few extra for the greenhouse we want to resurrect. I need to clear a space for the cold frames which involve taking down some oversized bushes. Very excited about homegrown veggies all year round!

I also need to build a better deer proof roof for my strawberry garden, do a garden burn, spread compost, till, and reform my beds. Oh, and build a trellis for the pole beans. All before the end of March!

Gardening is almost year round. I love it, even with little kids seem to make accomplishing things near impossible. Planting and growing couldn’t be done without a combined effort from my family. My sister and mom will start things for me, my husband helps with labor intense projects so they go more quickly, the kids help me plant and pick (and eat while we pick), and neighbors water my garden when we are on vacation. My heart goes into the garden, and I love that others roll up their sleeves and pitch in.

Come on spring! I’m so totally ready for you!

PS. Reuse pill bottles after washing them, to store dry seeds/beans. It’s a trick we’ve done for years.

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