She Brings Me Water

An aeclectic look at the nearby world


Bring Your Own Butter

Gourds and Lima Beans

The corn is all picked, and shucked, and waiting in the freezer to be eaten.  We’ve given away some of it to family and friends.  There are still some green beans drying on the vines, they got too big to be good eating but some of their younger siblings are also cooling their heels in the freezer.  A sad story concerning the lima beans: we started picking them last week, when we had a good sized bag I shelled them all, steamed them, seasoned them with butter, lemon pepper and garlic powder and- they were not good.  They were tough and had a sort of metallic taste.  Our gardening neighbor had gotten us this bag of beans to plant from Southern States, an agricultural supply store, where he gets some of his seeds, and on the bag it said “Not for human consumption”.  We assumed that referred to the dried beans in the bag, not the product of planting the beans, but maybe we were wrong. 

So, lessons learned for next year:

  • Choose our seeds earlier and with more attention, maybe choosing from seed catalogs so that we can get types more in keeping with the Native American tradition?
  • Four bean seeds per corn mound is too many, if all the seeds sprout and aren’t eaten by critters.  We had to stake some of the corn stalks to keep them from being pulled down by the vines. 
  • There is not enough space in between the corn and bean mounds to plant the squash (here’s a link to the spacing guidelines we followed).  The spaces between need to be bigger or space needs to be set aside just for the squash.  Or maybe alternate planting beans and squash in the corn mounds, instead of only beans?

The gourds were all volunteers that we transplanted from near the house, they did really well and we have gourds drying in three places: on our screened porch in an old dish-drying rack; outside on a screen; and in our greenhouse on a larger screen.  The reasons for three different drying places are: 1) there are too many of them to be all in one place; and 2) this way we can see what is the best method of drying them.  Very scientific.



  shewolfy728 wrote @

Wonderful! Fresh corn is a real treat – almost as much of one as fresh boiled peanuts! (Wait – can you tell I grew up in the south?) Anyway, it’s great that your garden was so bountiful, although it’s certainly no surprise. Too bad about the beans, though. So, heirloom seed catalogs are on the horizon for next year? What fun!

  gwenguin1 wrote @

Ahhhhhh.. the joy of fresh corn on the cob!! I love to roast mine over a fire. My only nod to modernism is that I wrap the ears in wet paper towels and then in tinfoil.

I open the ear, and save the silk as an excellent, potent diuretic that is gentler and more palatable than cranberries.

I then sprinkle a dash of salt and put a pat or two of butter before closing the hushs back up and adding the paper towel and tinfoil layers.

I roast it over a fire for 25-30 minutes, turning frquently to prevent burning.

The corn is steamed to perfection, tastes heavenly, and also had far less cleanup than boiling or using a steamer.

I’ll bring some butter and sea salt in a grinder for the corn dear, as well as show you how to dry the cornsilk for medicinal purposes.

Everything looks gorgeous love!!
Hugs and kisses,

  JBS wrote @

Your gardening tips are very insiteful. I look forward to your “Gardening On An Island” series next year on PBS. Be sure and let us know the dates and times.

  lorigloyd wrote @

I love corn on the cob slathered with butter, wrapped in foil, and roasted over the BBQ. So full of roasted flavor– to die for.

And what’s this about a PBS show?

  Heather Blakey wrote @

Your blog really is a sheer delight Mari and as a great fan of corn on the cob you can be assured that it will be on the menu tonight, with lashings of butter.

  Bo wrote @

Your gardening brings back such adventures when we started our first garden…and, oh what mistakes we made. We also made our first compost containers, well-hidden and discreet, until a neighbor told the city and we got a $50 fine. (Milwaukee wasn’t green; I doubt it is now.) In 1976, that was a lot of money for us.

  imogen88 wrote @

Yes, Mari, what about the PBS show? Sounds interesting! Love the images of the rich bounty! Just great.

  marimann wrote @

Yes, JBS, what is this about a PBS show? 🙂

JBS is my uncle, everyone, and he’s just going to love that he caught a few of you with that post. Congrats, JBS!

  JBS wrote @

I understand the location film crew will be there in late Sept. I sure hope you still have some garden left to show. At least the ariel shots being taken today will show your lush garden. How is the final draft of your script coming?

  Lori wrote @

Well, Mari, if you don’t have a PBS show, you should! There’s always the Home and Garden channel………… 🙂

  soulsister wrote @

Corn on the cob…mydaughter was only asking for it the other day…will tell her where to go to find it!!!:)

  marimann wrote @

Thanks, Lori, and SoulSister, tell your daughter to come on down! You too, JBS, I can tie some of the ears I’ve already picked back onto the stalks and paint them green…will that work?

  porchsitter wrote @

Oh, these garden and prairie blogs, I just love ’em. You gals are living the life I wish I could. I heard once that Europeans don’t eat corn on the cob and are amazed when they come to America. Wonder if that’s still true or if times have changed. Keep gardening and blogging, Mari, it’s a joy for us city folks!

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