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2 Ingredient Raspberry Jam in 10 Minutes

DawnRaspberry heaven

When I was younger I remember enjoying the rare occasion when I would get to slather my toast with either blackberry or raspberry jam. Those accompaniments to biscuits seemed downright exotic to me as a child. We never lived in the country then so my wisps of country knowledge came from visits to down home cooking restaurants. As I hit my teen years and would go to the local Cracker Barrel with my parents I always salivated over the candy-colored jars lining the shelves and filled with preserves and jams to caress my biscuits with. Fast forward to my adult years and we purchased a small farm, one of the first things I wanted to grow was berries, and LOTS of them.

The first year was scant for raspberries but plentiful for blackberries, the second year was the opposite; this year, I have hit the berry lottery. I am in a race however, not only with the birds and critters who also want my berries, but also with the grubby, chubby little fingers that race to the patch ahead of me to devour like locusts and come to Mommy with purple and red stained hands and cheeks.

On the occasion when I can beat all the other entities to the patch, I love to recreate that delectable jam. I often don't have pectin on hand, and it can get pricey, especially if you are putting up loads of berries like I hope to be doing a bit later in the season. I discovered a solution though, and the pectin is not even missed. It is so simple really I ponder why all jam is not made this way.I have canned with this recipe, frozen jam with this recipe, and also made the occasional refrigerator jar. All the techniques work very well.

On to my secret ... simply gather 3 cups of berries. Raspberries are bubbling up all around her so that is my berry of choice but blackberries work just as well. (NOTE: This recipe does not work well with strawberries). Once your raspberries are cleaned and rinsed this will take only 10 minutes, seriously, 10 minutes. It takes longer to pick the berries than to make this jam. Pull out your saucepan and toss in the berries, then use either a fork or pastry cutter to smash away and squish those little baubles.

Crushing the berries

Once you have a finely smashed saucepan of berry remnants simply add your sugar. For 3 cups of berries use 1-1/2 cups sugar. Stir over medium heat for 3-4 minutes to completely dissolve the sugar and then bring to a bubbling boil over medium-high heat. It is VERY important to stir constantly during this step or you will burn the sugar and your precious hard-won berries. Stirring constantly, boil for another 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool for refrigerator or freezer jam, or pour into hot waiting mason jars if you intend to can.

NOTE: Depending on the water content of your berries you may want to cool a small amount and make sure that it is jelled to your desired consistency, if not, no worries, you simply add a bit more sugar (start with 1/4 cup) and return to a boil.

At our house it is a rare day when this jam makes it to the canning stage, I usually have to hide some berries away to pull that off as we can devour an entire jelly jar in one sitting with our family of 7. This recipe has worked every time for me and even a few jars of blackberry jam that I canned from 2 years back still have the perfect consistency.

2 Ingredient Raspberry Jam

Recipe:

3 cups of berries (raspberry or blackberry)
1-1/2 cup sugar

Method: crush berries, add sugar and stir over medium heat until sugar has dissolved.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly and boil for 3-4 minutes. Cool and place in jelly jar in your refrigerator.

Now go on and grab a slice of homemade bread toasted with butter and draped in raspberry deliciousness!

Like what you read? Stop by my blog for more recipes, gardening tips, observations and anecdotes from a homeschooling, homesteading mother to 5 blessings. Incidental Farmgirl Blog

The Dual Purpose Herb You Should Be Growing

DawnIt's a fresh herb, a salad inclusion, a meat accompaniment, a drink garnish and a salsa requirement. But wait, a few months later and it becomes not only the start to new life to repurpose the entire cycle again but also a second culinary delight that brings to mind exotic dishes from faraway lands. What is this magical plant that I am referring to? Coriandrum sativum, better known to most as cilantro or coriander.

Cilantro ... mmmm. I am aware that this is one of those herbs that creates a strong reaction in people, they love it or they hate it, not too many in between. My love for it probably came from the time I spent living in Mexico and drowning in fabulous cuisine peppered with this culinary delight. Regardless, you should be growing this herb because the little-known fact of the matter is, it is the only one I am aware of that is a dual purpose herb.

Cilantro leaves

What do I mean by "dual-purpose"? This herb is one that is a 2 in 1 delight. When the plant first emerges and begins its journey into true leaf existence it is called cilantro. Pungent and flavorful it is a member of the parsley family but is called different things depending on the point in the life cycle you harvest it. It becomes coriander later in the cycle, another well-known culinary delight. In addition cooks in Thailand favor the roots of the coriander plant for use in making some of the finest curries.

It is originally native to the Mediterranean; you will also find it in Thai and Chinese cuisine as well as Hispanic and Indian dishes. Interestingly enough, this herb is so well known that it is even mentioned in the Bible. Ancient Romans used the herb to preserve meat and it can also be steeped as a tea. Cilantro is said to have stomach soothing properties that when consumed in large quantities, offers a significant source of Vitamins A and C.

Okay, so back to the dual purpose idea, when the plant is new and relatively low to the ground (6-8 inches in height) it is the delicious cilantro. However, what happens is that it will "bolt" in the heat of the summer. This means that it goes to flower as the plant prepares to change to its seed form, a self-propagating wonder. Once the stalks rise well above 12-18 inches the plant leaves change to a more carrot top looking spindly type and they begin to flower.

Cilantro beginning to bolt

From this point on the cilantro begins to take on a very bitter taste and is not, at least in my book, edible any longer. The plant will continue to dry out and the little flower buds will change to hard, round, brown seeds. This is coriander, a spice used in cooking as well, either whole or ground. The beauty of it all is that you can either harvest the coriander for your culinary use or save it for planting again next year.

Coriander

NOTE: Wherever you plant this herb it is likely to perform like a perennial, meaning because it self seeds it will come back year after year. Even the most diligent gardener is usually unable to harvest EVERY seed that drops to the ground so you again have the dual purpose advantage of a re-seeding plant as well as a second herb to use, coriander.

Want to learn more about natural living, herbs, gardening and the like? Stop on by and say hello on my blog Incidental Farmgirl. I look forward to a visit real soon!

- Incidental Farmgirl

Chocolate Gravy and Waffles

DawnThere are some recipes that are passed around in certain family groups. In my husband's family, it was chocolate gravy. I had never heard of this anomaly until we married. This seemed to have been a well kept southern secret that never made it up to where I was raised, just one state north.

I remember well the first time I went to my husband's grandmother's home. She lives in southern KY and is a good down home cooking kind of grandma. We woke in the morning to a full on breakfast with homemade biscuits, bacon, eggs, and this sweet-smelling, rich looking brown "gravy" that I saw hubby ladle all over his warm butter crusted biscuits. I was intrigued and he nonchalantly told me that it was his grandmother's chocolate gravy.

I had never heard of such a thing, I, being like any woman, (a chocolate lover) was curious, I quickly ladled myself some of this delectable deliciousness and it was game on. I spent years trying to get the exact recipe from Grandma, but alas, just like my mother-in-law, she uses no recipe. It's just all in the "feel" of the sauce ... well and good unless you are trying to learn to make the stuff!

Though Grandma always served these with homemade biscuits, we like to serve it as a sauce for homemade waffles.

I have played with this over the years and made some good, some not as good batches. I too rarely use a recipe these days, it's all in the "feel" but I did pay close enough attention when my daughter began asking how to make this goodie so that she was able to re-create it as well.

Here is the coveted Chocolate Gravy:

1 can evaporated milk (can sub whole milk or cream but it won't be as rich)
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup baking cocoa
dash salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon real butter

Waffle drizzled in chocolate gravy

The trick is to heat the milk very slowly so it won't curdle. This is a labor of love because the longer it takes to make the gravy, seriously, the better it tastes! Allow at least 45 min for good gravy.

First add the milk, sugar and baking cocoa, heat slowly then increase heat until a low boil for 3-4 minutes. Slowly cool down at the last add a dash of salt, the tablespoon of butter and vanilla. Be sure to start this process ahead of the waffles but stir often!

There are a billion waffle recipes out there, this is just the tried and true simple one that I use for every day, it works for us.

Waffles:

3 eggs
3 cups flour
2-1/4 cups milk
3 tablespoon sugar
6 tablespoon melted butter or olive oil
3 tablespoon baking powder
1-1/2 teaspoon salt

Mix all together and pour by 1/2 cup measure onto hot waffle iron.

batter

waffle iron

There you have it, not on anyone's diet but sure to tickle the taste buds and curb your chocolate craving for a bit, at least until lunch!

Like what you read? Follow me over at my blog Incidental Farmgirl.

Homesteaders Should Not Homeschool

DawnLearning from play

Beginning the life of homesteading is a noble thing; those partaking of this venture often have grandiose ideas, brilliant plans and tenacity. The life of sustainability is, at its core, a little against the grain of how society as a whole does things. Society is taught to depend on big farms to produce our food stuffs, big box stores to provide for our every whim and need, and most have lost the basic skills that would even allow for the idea of homesteading to come into play. Therefore, those who go against this current or tide of how things are normally done are often viewed as noble, yet they are often misunderstood. They may be misunderstood for their intentions, their drive, or even their motives, but they persist, a peculiar and fascinating sort of folks we are. Let me say though, with all this going against the grain and becoming independent of what we are told we should do, be careful of these crazy ideas that may just pop into your head. If you are going to be self sufficient and not rely on others as much as the populace as a whole, you may even consider educating your own children at home so that you have the control over what and how they should learn … watch out, I warn.

There it is, homesteaders shouldn’t homeschool, the idea has popped into your head, but wait, you shouldn’t jump off that cliff, unless …

1. You want to raise children who understand responsibility

Children of homesteaders learn this skill early. If you aren’t responsible for the care of your animals, they won’t thrive and may not survive. If you are truly homesteading and raising some of your animals for food, improper care of your animals or neglect can lead to problems in your food supply, bad idea. Children of homesteaders who choose homeschooling will often incorporate all of this vital information into daily lessons. Those homeschooling children may learn about rations of feed, variability in weight gain, gestational and sexual maturity ages and all kinds of things related to the instruction in animal husbandry. This is not typically a class taught in most schools, rarely would you find this elective, but the responsibility of animal husbandry is something that these crazy homeschooled homesteading children may learn.

2. You want to allow your children time to learn STEM skills from play

Another skill your home educated children may learn is an aspect or two regarding STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) but they may simply learn this from the hours they have at their disposal to just be playing on your farm. Any child who has decided that a rope swing from the top loft of a barn to the floor may be fun has gone through some engineering feats to accomplish the exact right height of the rope, the knot and the arc so as not to break bones and cause mom to squeal. These same children may be observing spring tadpoles in the creek and through frequent trips to fish will watch as the slimy whip tailed creatures begin forming legs and eventually losing their tail only to hop away while in hot pursuit by said child. The play involved in constructing forts and hideaways from the great world at large will also require some mathematical skills as well as engineering, however because they are playing, these homeschooled children may not ever realize the skills that they are exercising and learning along the way. Don’t forget the logic and problem solving skills that these children learn while creating some of these play items, this time may be seen by some as invaluable, don’t fall for it.

3. You want to teach your children a valuable sense of family

closer bonds

Those homeschooled children are together all day, every day. It has been said that if you can get along with your siblings, you can get along with anyone. These homeschooled homesteading children learn this and then in turn often find their best friends live in the same house as they do. By spending so much time together age gaps don’t seem as insurmountable and you may find that toddlers and 10-year-olds can play together for hours. These bonds that are created because of the time the children are allowed to spend together are invaluable. Children also quickly learn that their family is their home base and the most important asset they have, unlike many schooled children who inaccurately come to believe that their friends are the most important.

4. You want your children to have time to learn

These homeschooled children often have what seems like an endless amount of time to grasp a concept when they come across one that is difficult. There is no class moving ahead without them, no time table they have to rush to meet so that a state standardized test can measure their abilities. They have the luxury of learning at their own pace. Also, if you think about a typical school day with homeroom, bells ringing for class changes, bathroom breaks, disruptive children and fire drills being all removed, it is no wonder that these homeschooled children can often finish their lessons in a matter of 2-3 hours or less. Compare that to the average school day of 5-6 hours (with or without added transportation time included in that number).

5. You want to create an environment where your children love learning

These homesteaders who homeschool have figured something out. You can incorporate passion driven learning into any homeschool with brilliant results. If your child is interested in robotics you have the freedom to hop down that rabbit trail and exhaust the information superhighway for everything they want to learn. If cooking is their forte, you have the ability to allow them to incorporate cooking shows and a real live “lab” to whip things up in while they impress the family with some new found delectable. What about art you ask? Many traditional schools have had to forgo this one but these homeschoolers have the ability to explore museums, learn art history, and create masterpieces all without having to worry if there is enough government funding for the art and music program available.

There you have it, Homesteaders SHOULD NOT homeschool UNLESS they are interested in any of the areas mentioned above. Seriously, be warned, who wants children that love learning, have time to learn what they are passionate about, enjoy strengthening family bonds, learn from playing and learn some serious responsibility? Yeah, I didn’t think so … me either, that’s Why We Homeschool too.

Incidental Farmgirl

If you enjoyed this post, come follow the adventures and education on our little farm with 5 children where we homeschool, garden, tend to livestock, and live life more like our ancestors did: Incidental Farm Girl

Know Your Weeds

DawnDisclaimer: I am but an incidental farm girl … I have studied and learned information from generations of other former farmgirls, I am not a doctor, use your judgment and seek a professional’s opinion if you feel inclined to do so … the following is just my knowledge and research on common medicinal weeds.

There was a time, not even 100 years ago, where most people could remedy common problems with the knowledge they had and some weeds they foraged. Grandma's medicine cabinet was much simpler than ours today, and with far fewer side effects too. My grandmother tells stories of the fern-like plants that flowered tiny white flowers with yellow centers growing by the outhouse in her childhood, when there was a stomach issue she was to eat 4 yellow centers of the flowers, not more than that, and the stomach and bowel issues would be put at bay.

This knowledge seems to have been lost in the proverbial cracks of time as we have moved forward, industrialized, and become far removed from not only our food sources but also our ancestors’ ways of living and caring for our bodies. This is knowledge we should seek and hold tight too, there was a reason that grandparents and parents taught it to their children, we just have to look a little harder these days as many of those readily knowledgeable sources didn’t impart the knowledge because they saw that people afforded little value to it in modern times. It's time to get back to knowing our weeds.

Plantain- useful for stings

PLANTAIN (Plantago major)

If you subscribe to avoiding Monsanto’s Roundup and all other chemical treatments, you likely can find this in your backyard or growing in the cracks of your walkway or driveway. Usually considered a nuisance plant, it wasn’t until I saw firsthand what a poultice of this plant can do for wasp stings to a 3-year-old that I was SOLD! This weed can be used successfully for scrapes, cuts, burns, stings and even for relief of poison ivy. It works as a drawing agent and is fantastic for skin. In a pinch, since it is edible, you can chew it up and apply the chewed leaves to a sting for fast relief (as in the case of my son and the attack of the wasps).

Lambsquarter- useful for skin irritations

LAMBSQUARTER (Chenopodium album L.)

Another pretty easy one to locate, this one aids significantly with inflammation and can be used similarly to the Plantain, or even in conjunction with it for added relief.

Another one to chew, totally edible and compared and likened to spinach in its edibility department. Made into a poultice and applied to the body, it also aids in insect bites, minor scrapes, inflammation reduction, and even sunburn. Used as a tea, it is reported to be beneficial for diarrhea, stomach upset and even the occasional loss of appetite. (Just be sure to strain the leaves as they can irritate the throat)

MULLEIN (Verbascum Thapsus Linnaeus)

Mullein, a tall formidable, flowering fuzzy plant that can often be found growing in fields. It is often touted for its antibiotic-like properties; even WebMD posts the following:
“Mullein is used for cough, whooping cough, tuberculosis, bronchitis, hoarseness,pneumonia, earaches, colds, chills, flu, swine flu, fever, allergies, tonsillitis, and sore throat. Other uses include asthma, diarrhea, colic, gastrointestinal bleeding,migraines, joint pain, and gout. It is also used as a sedative and as a diuretic to increase urine output. Mullein is applied to the skin for wounds, burns, hemorrhoids, bruises, frostbite, and skin infections (cellulitis). The leaves are used topically to soften and protect the skin.”

When mullein flowers are infused into an oil base this is what many an old timer used as a treatment for ear infections. The leaves are often used in strongly brewed teas for coughs and congestion.

MALLOW (Malva parviflora)

Another one that favors cracks in walkways and gardens, all Mallow species (over 3,000) are edible, medicinal and totally devoid of any harmful properties one is rich in a sticky mucilage often extracted from the flowers, leaves, stalks, seeds, and roots. This can often be made into a medicinal vinegar to sooth sore throats, constipation, food poisoning and all around stomach upset. This is another one that is also useful for stings, bug bites and skin irritations.

Yarrow- makes a great tincture

YARROW (Achillea millefolium)

This fernlike perennial weed is what I think may have grown by grandma’s outhouse growing up. Many use the flowering tops (use only white-flowering yarrow) with strong alcohol to make a tincture that you can take internally to prevent colds and the flu. (A dose is 10-20 drops, or up to 1 ml). This is also purported to be a HUGELY beneficial natural insect repellent, even studied by the United States Army where it was shown that a yarrow tincture was more effective (and safer) than DEET at repelling ticks, mosquitoes, and sand flies. You can also make a healing ointment with yarrow flower tops and your oil or fat. Yarrow oil is antibacterial, pain-relieving, and incredibly helpful in healing all types of wounds.

Dandelion- the most common and overlooked

DANDELION (Taraxacum)

A diuretic that is often used in treating liver disorders the common dandelion can be eaten in salad greens, cooked with and even made into wine. This common weed can also be used to treat mild constipation.

With any luck, your interest should be at least slightly piqued. When we look to the old ways of doing things, it is often so very simple that we feel slighted that we didn’t see some of the ease of information available to us. Your yard is likely a plethora of medicinal value, as long as you aren’t killing off all that free medicine with synthetic weed killers. Go outside and see what you have on the shelves of your medicine cabinet!

Like what you read? Come visit me on my Facebook page or my blog for more wisdom and ramblings, hope to see you all again soon.

Dawn, the Incidental Farm Girl

I Am Not Homesteading

DawnThe verb “homesteading” leads us to conjure up images of roosters crowing, the smell of freshly cut hay, jewel toned mason jars lining shelves stocked for winter, fresh juicy fruits dangling from a front yard orchard tree, and of course the quintessential porch adorned with rocking chairs to sit back and enjoy the country life.

Though this may be the ideal that we have in our minds, possibly crafted from one too many country lifestyle periodicals, homesteading can actually look quite different indeed. According to Wikipedia, Homesteading is defined as:

“A lifestyle of self-sufficiency. It is characterized by subsistence agriculture, home preservation of foodstuffs, and it may or may not also involve the small scale production of textiles, clothing, and craftwork for household use or sale.”

Far too many of us have a desire to homestead. However, lacking the rolling hundred acres that we have ideally tucked into our minds, we observe others and discount our own self-sustaining efforts. Let me suggest that anyone can homestead, or at least begin that journey. If you live on a smallish plot, in a more suburban area, on a few acres or as first generation farmers jumping in head first to the lifestyle of our ancestors, you can be a homesteader.

I actually began this journey about 15 years ago when I planted my first garden, in my first home. The string of years that followed caught me learning the skills of bread making, home canning, sewing, seed saving, dehydrating, and from scratch cooking. I still didn't consider myself a homesteader. We had expanded from a 900 square foot home on a tiny little lot, to a larger home on exactly 0.64 of an acre. I still didn't consider that I was on the road to homesteading; after all, we had no livestock, no rolling acres and no front porch rocker.

Fast forward a few more years and we were able to move out a little ways. Our small farm is just shy of 6 acres. Though I was aching for those rolling pastures, we purchased what was in our budget. That homesteading ideal was still eluding me, I wasn't feeling self-sufficient. Though cooking most everything from scratch by this point, I had shelves of those jewel toned morsels in mason jars waiting for winter. I had learned the art of saving heirloom seeds and growing a garden from seeds instead of nursery plants. I could identify and use a number of easily procured medicinal herbs and weeds. I could make most anything I needed, including laundry soap. I finally got some livestock in the way of chickens and turkeys, but I still felt vastly inadequate when I looked around at what others were doing.

We began harvesting and butchering our own poultry, purchasing our pork from friends, and drinking raw milk whenever we could get our hands on some. We made butter, yogurt, and sauerkraut. We learned more about food sources, cleaned our diets and introduced fermented foods and drinks. I also began blogging to teach others some of the skills I had learned. I still didn't feel like a homesteader, though I desperately wanted to join that ever intangible, seemingly exclusive club.

It was only recently that I realized that it was my ideal, or definition, that was holding me back from recognizing all that we had accomplished in the way of becoming more self sufficient, more sustainable. I was looking at others and comparing what our family did not have mastered and sustained, instead of accepting that we had come a very long way from the days when I fed my children macaroni & cheese with hot dogs for lunch and had no idea how to even cut up a chicken, let alone butcher one.

I stand amazed at the journey we have had to get to our homesteading nirvana. I may not have all that my neighbor homesteading on 30 acres down the road has, but I am learning daily and each season we get just a little closer to being less dependent on others and more dependent on ourselves and God's provisions.

If you are one of the voyeurs just lurking and wishing you could live the homesteading life, get started where you are. Plant some herbs in a window sill instead of buying them, teach yourself a new skill, and research some aspect of homesteading that fascinates you. Learn from another's mistakes and don't compare yourself to someone else, there will always be someone further along the road to total self sufficiency than you are. That someone will have a more well equipped greenhouse, more renewable resources, a larger scale livestock operation, and more country know how than you.

Don't let other homesteaders hamper your curiosity driven desire to get back to your roots, take off learning new skills so that you too can look back and see just how serendipitous your journey has become, and how you too are actually homesteading. You’ll be able to do just that, all while sipping a sweet tea from that quintessential rocking chair on the front porch.

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No-Till Yard Beans

DawnYou’ve decided that this is the year you will start gardening, or maybe this is the year you will expand your garden.  I am here to teach you a very simple technique that requires no special equipment and can be done by even a child.  Yard beans, the no-till way. 

Bush beans, pole beans and half runners are some of the easiest things to grow making them perfect for newer gardeners.  These delicious and versatile veggies pack a punch in the antioxidant department as well as containing lutein, beta carotene, vitamin C, Vitamin K and fiber.   These crops, once harvested, hold their amazing crisp, fresh from the garden flavor when frozen and when canned, can be stored for years without degradation of flavor or nutrients. 

In the sustainability department, the bean may win for the easiest to save seed from.  What this means for the sustainable gardener is that once you procure your first batch of beans in a variety that you love, you can simply save those seeds from year to year, never having to purchase them again.  There are no difficult preps needed to save the seed, just allow the bean pods to dry on the vine at the end of growing season and then harvest the hard little seeds to store in a cool dry place for next year.

What is my secret to these super easy no-till methods?  It’s something I fondly call “yard beans.”  You can plant “yard beans” in the country, city, suburbs, just about anywhere you have access to a bit of narrow space in your yard.  Because pole beans have a beautiful climbing nature with petite flowers ranging from white to pink and purples, these crops can be added into most landscapes or against fence rows without distracting from the beauty around them.

How do you do this amazing technique?  Gather the following … old newspapers, dirt (preferably with rich organic compost mixed in), and bean seed.  Toss all the yard bean ingredients into a wheelbarrow and head to your planting spot.  Some would want perfectly straight rows, no problem, but you can also kind of eyeball this too. 

wheelbarrow
Supplies for yard beans.

The first step is to lay out your newspaper in a line, approximately 3 to 5 layers thick.  Don’t do this on a windy day or you may give your neighbors a good laugh as you chase the daily news down the road. 

The second step is to pour a layer of dirt right down the center of all those obituaries and political polls.  Leave the dirt pile a bit higher in the center and let it kind of fall off a bit on the sides.  You do not have to push the dirt all the way to the edge of your newspapers; in fact, this may encourage weeds to “jump” your barrier.

shovel
Method for planting your no-till beans.

The next step is to plant your bean seed.  Beans typically do best when planted under no more than 1/2-1 inch of soil so just poke the little buggers down in your mound and loosely cover over with soil.

beans
The line of beans.

Finally, and most importantly, water your yard beans.  This is very important as you want to start to break down the newspaper as well.  Breaking down the newspaper will also help encourage those slithering fish bait creatures to tunnel up, and we all know that earth worms are fantastic soil additions.

Step back and wait.  It is a good idea to add 4’ stakes at the ends of your rows if planting pole beans.  The beans love a good acrobatic session between rows of crafted twine spider webbing between the stakes.

rows
The final product … beautiful rows of yard beans.

There you have it, your neighbors may be jealous at your ingenuity.  You may even find copy-cat gardeners planting no till yard beans all around you.  But, now you are the expert and can teach them what to do.