When it comes to Thanksgiving dinner, many of us plan on having turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, and cranberry sauce. This year, how about celebrating Thanksgiving by inviting three sisters (corn, beans, and squash) to the table?
This garden trio has been used by Native Americans to grow sustainable food sources for centuries and is increasing in popularity for northwest urban gardens (and mine as well).
How does it work?
While beans help to stabilize the tall corn stalks during heavy winds, they also provide nitrogen to help fertilize the soil.
Balanced food source
Although a balanced diet is relatively readily available today, the Three Sisters (corn, beans, and squash) had a vital importance to a healthy diet for native peoples. The corn provided carbohydrates, dried beans provided protein and amino acids, and squash offered a variety of vitamins and minerals.
When to plant for northwest gardens
Plant corn seeds in late spring when the soil begins to warm. Next, plant bean seeds 2 -3 weeks later (or when the corn is 4” tall). Squash seeds are the last to be planted about one week after the beans have emerged.
Be sure that your garden receives a minimum of 6 hours of sun per day (more is better)! Select seed varieties that do well in your area and choose organic or heirloom varieties if available. Most important, have fun growing your own Three Sisters vegetable garden and find a few kids to get involved!
Please donate to your local food bank
Thanksgiving and holidays are a difficult time for many families and individuals. If you can, please donate to your local food bank, thank you.
About BauerCombs & Associates, Inc. - Landscape Architects
Our award-winning landscape architecture firm creates fun and entertaining landscapes throughout the Northwest, Seattle, and Eastside areas since 1991. With an emphasis on sensory design and eco-friendly practices, we provide creative problem-solving and innovative designs that embrace outdoor spaces and enjoyment. Based out of North Bend, Washington, our work has been published in several magazines and continues to grow in reputation for creating healthy outdoor environments for people and communities.
Author: Susan Combs Bauer. Copyright © 2017 BauerCombs & Associates, Inc. All rights reserved. www.bauercombs.com (425) 496-7772
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Susan Combs Bauer, Landscape Architect www.bauercombs.com