Janice's Blog

Honest, the Rabbit ate my beans!

Here we are at mid-August and I'm sad to say that one of the usual mainstays of the garden is in short supply!

What!!! you say, haven't you been gardening?  What's wrong with you?

Well, this year in the garden, has been the year of the rabbit ... specifically, the rabbit we haven't been able to catch.

Go figure, fenced off yard, 2 Shiba Inus patrolling the perimeter most of the day, and yet ... RABBIT BEAN CARNAGE!!!!  At least the green and yellow snap bean varieties.  They've even been nibbling the pole beans down to little nubbins as soon as they get a couple of sets of leaves on them.

So, I have been tucking in bean seeds all over the place over the past few weeks, hoping that if they're planted in enough places, the rabbits will leave some alone.  So far, these Blue Lake pole beans in pots are the only ones to have really thrived, BUT, they are only just starting to flower.

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On the bright side, however, the rabbits don't seem to like any of the dried bean plants.  Go figure!  Don't know if the plants themselves are more fibrous, but in any case, they haven't touched any of this bed:
I planted about 4 varieties of dried beans in total, including Montezuma Red (just starting to colour up in the pods here).  These little ones cook up very similar to black beans.
I also planted black beans, Jacobs' cattle beans (which are pretty and speckled), and these bi-coloured beans called Orca, which are just starting to get their distinctive colouring.  The dark parts will get jet black, and look suspiciously like orca markings!
Dried beans are really easy to grow, and I'm really happy with the prospective yields per plant of all the varieties I grew this year.   I'm going to be devoting more garden space to them next year.  Having grown and cooked them in previous years, the taste of homegrown dried beans is also nicer than those you buy in the bulk bins, and they generally cook up a little faster, plus you can get all kinds of really cool heritage varieties with interesting markings on them.

Finally, there is something really satisfying about having jars of dried beans at the ready for the dead of winter!