Photos: Itza Maya techniques produce 12 feet tall bean stalks
Actually, some of them are 14 feet tall! The instructions on the package of seeds said that these particular beans that were originally from Peru, grew from about 32″ to 36″ tall. Must be the gold in them thar hills!
The little six week old terrace garden that you saw on the History Channel in 2012 is now four times bigger and a heckuva lot more fertile. I continued cutting down trees and brush on the slope here in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Large trunks became retaining walls. Smaller trees became charcoal to mix with the soil. Saplings became bean and pea poles. The terraces were cut and filled out of the natural slope with a shovel and mattock.
In addition to the charcoal, I used the same Muskogean gardening techniques that my grandparents used. Organic kitchen refuse is added directly to the soil . . . so are egg shells. I burn any bones in the wood stove and then spread the ashes over the terraces. Terraces that will be growing plants that need potassium and nitrogen get diluted urine.
The photos below were taken in mid-September. The only things growing now in the garden are collards and Fordhook Lima beans.
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