Green Bean Harvest, Organic Growing, Career Changes and Pallet Building

Readers share about their adventures growing organically, changing careers, green bean growing, and pallet building.

Gallons of Green Beans

_green beans picking

My husband and I spent a couple of weeks this summer picking, snapping, cleaning, cutting, and canning green beans. We had our own little garden at our house with green bean plants, and my grandma had too many green bean plants to keep up with, so we helped her too. In one pick, we got 5 gallons of green beans. We got to work on them right away. It was my first time using a pressure canner too! We got about 50 pint-sized jars canned, and we can’t wait to use them this winter.

green beans cans

Allie Bierman
Via email

Organic Without Certification

We have a brown mamma bunny and two baby bunnies that visit our garden daily. They’re so cute! Some gardeners don’t like them, but we do. They eat some of our dandelion greens and Coreopsis plants, but they also sit in our raised beds and leave little piles of natural, nonburning fertilizer. Next year, we’ll plant more dandelion greens — some for us, some for them.

Our October/November issue of Mother Earth News arrived, and I was sad to read “Unpacking ‘Organic,’ ” especially regarding certification, which apparently is difficult for small farmers and gardeners to obtain. Our small garden is organic — we don’t use poisons or anything artificial, and we don’t need to be certified anyway. We eat the weeds we recognize, including plantain, purslane, and dandelion (greens and blossoms), and we freeze them for winter-greens smoothies. We use mint, chive, and parsley in salads. We also eat edible flowers; violet is one of our favorites.

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