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The chore’s not as big when it comes from your garden

By Penny Stine

I'm very disappointed in my green bean fence. I planted green beans along this whole fence and you can see how many plants survived. I suspect I had watering issues (one of my sprinklers was only spitting water & I didn't pay attention), which is why so few came up. So far, I think I've picked two beans from these puny plants.





Fortunately, I planted them on this pallet, almost as an afterthought. The pallet was supposed to be for the cucumbers on the other side, but since I had about a dozen green bean seeds, I stuck them in the ground. I've picked a lot of beans from this pallet.











They tend to hide in the jungle, however.







I've also got them on trellises and they're doing well here. I've been picking beans from this trellis for a couple of weeks.



One of the cool things about growing your own veggies is that you can freeze and preserve them in small batches. If you're going to make the effort to go find a farmer, buy beans and freeze them for winter, then you feel like you should buy a big bunch of beans. When you're picking three times a week and eating them only once or twice a week, then you can freeze what you don't eat. And then the process of freezing veggies doesn't take near as long to actually do.
In fact, you can do it in a few minutes. I picked some green beans this morning (I picked more than two, but didn't actually take a picture of the pile of freshly picked beans) then steamed them in this pot, arranged them on the pie platter to put in the freezer where they will turn into little individually frozen beancycles. After several hours, I'll put them in the gallon-size freezer bag.
I may be losing a few nutrients to the air by doing it this way, but I like the fact that I don't end up with a frozen glob of green beans that are all stuck together. I'm sure they're still more nutritious than canned beans.
I'm hoping to have two or three gallons of frozen green beans by the time the season is over. They're not quite as wonderful frozen as they are fresh, but they're better than anything you can buy in January.  


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