Friday, June 17, 2011

Garden Journal 2011 {Green Beans}

Our neighbors have a huge palo verde tree on the perimeter of their yard.  The branches hang over onto all three of their neighbor's property.  This tree drops spider mites into my garden and cause me grief year after year.  Usually it starts slowly and by July when I just can't bare to keep up the work of spraying them off, my plants become overtaken by their webbing and croak.

They came early this year.  Just as the plants were getting established they decided to do some major tree trimming.  There is no way to cut the branches hanging over our yard when the garden is all planted out.  However, the agitation of the tree must have caused these mites to fall like they have never fell before.  My tomatoes, zucchini and green beans were hit hard.  While I have gotten only a few tomatoes and no zucchini, the green beans still produced really well even though the plants looked terrible.

I planted two - eight foot rows this year, each row I planted 6 weeks apart.  One mid February and the second at the beginning of April.  The timing was perfect, just as the first row was petering out, the second were coming into production.  I have not been bean-less in the past 3 months! In fact, I have had more than we can handle, 5 lbs a week gets to be a little much week after week.  I crammed as many as I could into yummy dishes like this Garbanzo Bean Curry and my own Salmon Pasta.  I gave some away, but boy was that hard after all the work that went into those babies!

After a few times of having over 5 pounds still in the fridge, going out to pick and pulling back the leaves to find a jungle of full grown beans, I decided to knock out some jars in the canner.  I generally hate frozen green beans, but I am thinking that I might make a huge batch of the green bean curry and see how that freezes.  Any other suggestions?
links; Fresh Bites Friday, Foodie Friday, Finer Things Friday, Fightback Friday


  1. That's too bad about your tomatoes and zucchini :( That's a ton of green beans though! My mom used to pickle them so you could try that. Sorry that's all I can think of!

  2. I'm new to this gardening thing but I think our plants are getting attacked by these spider mites. What do you spray them off with? I love your blog by the way. You always have very informative posts. :)

  3. I am interested in what you can do about mites too- I have little mites in my soil and I don't want to do anything crazy cause I am a novice when I comes to gardening but my zucchini and cucumber and some of my tomato never did anything this season because of the mites. Any ideas would help me in the future- thanks!

  4. Do you have any mites in the soil? I also had little flies (it looked like) all over my tomatoes. I sprayed with soap and water but it didn't seem to do anything..any suggestions would help this gardening novice :)

  5. From what I have learned about spidermites, they need completely dry conditions and just spraying the plants with a hose with some pressure knocks them off, disorientates them and they end up dying in the wet soil.

    Alisha, if yours are living in the soil, they are not the same thing. Usually diatomaceous earth is good for harmful soil bugs. I would guess the flies on your tomatoes were aphids. Spraying them off regularly with a hose and the soap and water is the only organic solutions I have heard of.

  6. I can't help with the gardening situation but for th spare green beans, pickle them! I use this recipe and my whole family LOVES them. Do they keep their nutritional value when they are pickled in salt and vinegar?

  7. I didn't think to pickle them and can them. I did ferment some of them, which preserved them well. I still have some!


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