Tuesday, 27 May 2014

sticks and string

It's time to get supports in for all my tall heritage veggies, (shortness has been bred into modern varieties to make them easier to manage).  These 'Champion of England' peas will easily get to 2 metres - so although these might look like the most optimistic pea sticks in the world, they'll be fully covered in a few weeks. They need to be strong enough to hold the weight of the crop without keeling over at the crucial moment. I kept lots of nice sturdy bits of hazel from the hedge I laid back in January - perfect for the job and I love how they look. Plenty of twiggy bits for the peas to wrap their little tendrils around as they sprint skywards.

On Monday I found myself short of a few sticks to finish the supports for my broad beans. Now I wouldn't normally disappear up the woods on a busy bank holiday (honest boss if you're reading this), but the siren call of an hour's peace among the trees was hard to resist. So I took some loppers and set off to cut some ash poles.

Here they are in situ with cats cradle string.

The beans on the right are a month ahead.

I'm going to learn to make string out of nettles to help build our new Celtic village.
That's exciting (if you're me).
My arms are covered in nettle rash from pulling them out of the hedges.
Might as well make use of the little buggers - too tough to eat now, so string it is...


  1. Pea sticks, lovely! Picking peas off the plant and podding them into a colander was one of my favourite jobs as a kid. Fresh raw peas, mmm, so delicious.
    Nettle string? I have to ask... What?! More info in your next blog post, please!
    I must just say a big thank you for all your brilliant comments, Bernice - I do appreciate them, you never fail to make me nod, smile, and feel good! xxx

    1. The next post will be sponsored by Clarityn...!!

  2. I love the twiggy supports for the peas - so beautiful.
    Nettle string sounds amazing, I hope you will blog about it!

  3. You peas and beans look great, but I'm not at all sure about that nettle business!! I will leave you to it I'm afraid! xx

  4. Man I am so pinning this...you are brilliant and these supports are STUNNING!!!! I love it in every single way! Great work friend and a wonderful week of gardening to you! Nicole xoxo

  5. Hello Bernice,

    Your pea sticks look perfection itself. Indeed, the whole of your vegetable garden looks like a work of art. What beautiful patterns and textures the various vegetable patches make and one can only imagine how delicious the produce will be when it comes to harvesting. Lovely!

    Is life too short to make nettle string we wonder? Still, it is so good that we are all individuals and each have our own passions. We are thrilled that you are thrilled at the prospect of creating a Celtic Village and look forward to seeing what this can possibly mean!

    Happy days!

  6. Interesting fact about the height of heritage plants. Lovely job you have, having to walk in the woods on a sunny spring day!

  7. String out of nettles sounds huge fun, will you be posting about it? Love the supports very rustic looking, just as they should be.