Monday, August 25, 2008


So what do green beans have to do with quilting? Well not a whole lot, except that this winter I will not have to buy any at the store, which saves money for buying quilting items! LOL.

But, I thought I would share one of the activities that I do about every two to three days during August. Ernie grows a wonderful garden (he is our landlord and his wife Maureen is a quilting buddy) and green beans are one of the items he grows. Boy oh Boy does he grow green beans!

Since Ernie is not in the best physical shape; we worked out a splendid arrangement. He plants them, waters them and watches them grow. Then one day he says its time to pick. So I begin my part of the work. I pick the green beans and snap them. He cans them. Then he shares all the green beans we want for the winter.

Here are some photos of the green bean fences. There are two of them about 5 feet high and about two pickup lengths long (I am not sure of the feet in length). It is amazing how quickly they grow.

Picking them is not a hard task; but at the same time not an easy task. Believe it or not green beans love to play hide and seek. They blend in with the leaves and vines perfectly, plus the leaves and vines love to help them hide! After picking for about 10 minutes and seeing nothing but becomes an even harder game. Except for the ones that I missed on the last picking day, those green beans are now giants and they turn a lighter green. It seems like they are making fun of you at this time..."just try and miss me today", but it also gives the smaller beans a chance to blend in better because you are focusing on giant green beans. LOL.

This is a plastic grocery bag filled with green beans. There were a total of three of these bags picked today by me alone! Which took close to three hours. Next, I get to snap half of them (the other half Maureen does) which will take me about two hours. Of course, not all the green beans I pick manage to make it to the sack at all. Many of them somehow magically disappear inside my mouth hee-hee! They are so delicious fresh this way, I just can not resist a few here and there. Besides it takes a lot of energy to pick the critters, I have to keep my strength up!

Just a snap shot of two green beans.

This is a "snapped" green bean. When Ernie first asked if I would help snap the green beans; I looked at him like he was insane. Maureen and Ernie both laughed at me and gave me a bad time about never having snapped beans before. They gave a lesson and it threw me away that they really do snap when you break them into sections.

While snapping them, you actually get to create music. SNAP, SNAP, SNAP, pick up next one, SNAP, SNAP, SNAP. I gotta give you a little bit of amusement (hopefully) in my effort here. This is the one bowl of the "snapped" green beans. Now I will take them down to Ernie and he will can them.

He has already canned over 24 cases of green beans. He has decided to let neighbors, friends, anyone pick what they would like. The remainder of the beans will be left on the vines to dry up. Then I get to go and pick them and open them up and take out all the little bean seeds inside. Ernie says they make the best ham and beans!

It has been fun sharing this with you. I hope you got a little laugh and maybe learned something you did not know. Now, I am off once again to my quilting! Yippeeeee!

Have a great day and enjoy some green beans for dinner!


  1. That's a heck of lot of beans. I hope to have a vegetable garden again when we are able to move and beans are certainly on my list, though we shall probably grow runner beans (yours look like what we call French beans). I've read lots of American blogs about canning - do you literally put them into cans? Or is it some other sort of preserving?

  2. I help my FIL pick all his beans. We freeze them to use all throughthe winter.

    Love an dhugs Gina xxx

  3. Amanda,

    The canning is a form of preserving; the beans are actually put in glass jars and sealed. I do not know much about the process personally but a lot of people do this.


    What is the process you use to freeze them. I tried some this way and they were all soggy. I evidentally did not do something right!

    Thanks for your comments! Brenda

  4. What a great post, Brenda! We used to help Muddy pick and snap her green beans too. She grew them on her farm and the Dumplin' and I would go and help her pick them and can them when it was time. And they make beautiful green bean fences also! SNAP, SNAP! Thanks for the memories! :)

  5. Sandra Ree,

    So glad that I helped spark a memory!

  6. I love to snap fresh green beans. Great conversations have happened over that very activity! Wonderful picture of the "cute" cat. :-)

  7. Hi Brenda,
    Thank you for your comment on my blog..
    Now, that's a lota beans!
    There's nothing better than fresh home grown vegies.
    You'll enjoy many meals with that lot, and what a great way to share!