Tag Archives: October beans

This priest’s gardening mistakes

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Sixty years old. My first time gardening. Mistakes are bound to be made:

  • Never having planted squarrrsh, I didn’t know how expansive they are, how much they hog the sun, putting up an impenetrable canopy. Pretty much all my cucumbers have bitten the dust, planted too near the squarrrsh. Cucumbers can climb. They don’t mind being in seed-boxes. So, they’ll get the seed boxes next year.
  • The squarrrsh are doing… um… waaay tooo well. Unlike the cucumbers, they don’t need to be near a fence. And now I know they do NOT do well as they could if they were NOT to be in seed boxes. The branches break off at the edge of the seed boxes, exposing the wide-open tunnels of the inner branches to all sorts of critters. So, next year, no seed boxes for squarrrsh.
  • The tomatoes are doing well. There is still one without one tomato. Others have half a dozen already on the way, some tiny, some tennis ball sized. The tomato cages I put over the just planted plants were put down… um…. upside down! What do I know?! Obviously nothing. Such beginner mistakes. But barring plagues and moulds and rust and such, it looks like I’ll be getting at least some tomatoes. There are, among my 14 plants, some just a few feet high, some over five feet, now some 55, make that 60 tomatoes. But my neighbors laugh at my upside down cages. :-)
  • I planted a squarrrsh plant right in the midst of the asparagus forest, making it about impossible to see the new asparagus. But that will be corrected next year. The cucumbers will go with the asparagus. It’s a space thing.
  • The October Beans never appeared at all. The seeds either didn’t germinate because I planted them way too deep, or rotted for the same reason, or were eaten by critters for the same reason. There’s a reader of the blog who asked for such seeds years ago… if he hasn’t planted them — Hey! — send them back! I’m gonna try to grow these again next spring, which isn’t that far away. 82 Third Street; Andrews, NC, 28901, USA!
  • The biggest mistake was experimenting with spaghetti squarrrsh seeds. I dumped the seeds in the ground with no fertilizer, no extra care, no special soil. Nothing. They exploded are now huge, taking over the house. As you can see from the picture above, I’m guiding them along the top of a two-foot high wire fence. Just in that picture you can already count three spaghetti squarrrshes. They get huge, like a small watermelon, weighing in at four to eight pounds each. Yikes! My question: should I rip these vines off the top of the fence and place them on the ground? And actually, it’s already too late, as some lengths of the vine itself is woven into the fence and can’t possibly be removed. A huge mistake? or is this still alright?

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Flowers for the Immaculate Conception (October’s August: time for war ed.)

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These are the flowers of October beans. They stay around for quite a while, providing bees (who get annoyed with humming birds) and fighter-attack humming birds (who instantaneously go into all out war mode upon seeing bees) with that over which they enjoy a good battle.

The beans are enormous, their existence pretty much denied by everyone. I had pictures of them up on a previous blog published from the hermitage, and a reader denied the possibility asking that I send a few exemplars his way. I did. He wrote back a very apologetic letter saying he shouldn’t have doubted that the Lord could create such beauties. Just a handful will make a great soup for the day.

I imagine the Immaculate Conception would have made some really good soups of all kinds for Jesus and any and all orphan kids in the town. You can also extend soup for another mouth to feed. October beans, being so big, would be just the thing.

Of course, these beans wont be ready until – you guessed it – October. But they can be saved all year. Let me see, what’s that feast in October dedicated to something to do with our Lady? That feast day also has something to do with a certain kind of flowers and… and… with a famously epic battle that changed the entire course of history. Such violence! Our Lady knows all about it. October beans flowers are most appropriate for her. I’m sure you guessed what that feast day is by now and how that feast day came about… Time for fill-in-the-blank fun:

What was the most useful weapon of war in that battle called? ____________

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