Three Sisters Garden At The Lsem Sm


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History of the Three Sisters garden at the Louisiana State Exhibit museum.

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Three Sisters Garden At The Lsem Sm

  1. 1. The Three Sisters Garden at the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum 2009
  2. 2. What is a Three Sister’s Garden? <ul><li>According to Iroquois legend, corn, beans, and squash are three inseparable sisters who only grow and thrive together. This tradition of interplanting corn, beans and squash in the same mounds, widespread among Native American farming societies, is a sophisticated, sustainable system that provided long-term soil fertility and a healthy diet to generations. Growing a Three Sisters garden is a wonderful way to feel more connected to the history of this land, regardless of our ancestry. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Why did Native Americans choose these crops? <ul><li>Corn, beans and squash were among the first important crops domesticated by ancient Mesoamerican societies. Corn was the primary crop, providing more calories or energy per acre than any other. According to Three Sisters legends corn must grow in community with other crops rather than on its own - it needs the beneficial company and aide of its companions. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Corn provides a natural pole for bean vines to climb. </li></ul><ul><li>Beans fix nitrogen in the soil to </li></ul><ul><li>feed the corn and squash. </li></ul>3. Squash vines become a living mulch, shading emerging weeds and preventing soil moisture from evaporating, thereby improving the overall crops’ chances of survival in dry years. Spiny squash plants also help discourage predators from approaching the corn and beans.
  5. 5. Week One <ul><li>We have experienced a cooler and wetter than normal spring. </li></ul>
  6. 6. The Beginning April 27, 2008
  7. 10. Week Two <ul><li>May </li></ul><ul><li>The Seeds have germinated and started growing. </li></ul>
  8. 13. Heirloom Dent Corn Squash Heirloom Pole Beans
  9. 14. Week Three <ul><li>Insect Problems </li></ul>
  10. 19. Week Four <ul><li>Pests gone-Sprayed with liquid Sevin </li></ul><ul><li>Wind blows down corn </li></ul><ul><li>Corn staked </li></ul><ul><li>Only 2 sunflowers come up </li></ul><ul><li>Pole beans taking off </li></ul>
  11. 21. Treat left side With EcoMulch Compost Tea
  12. 22. Pole Beans Taking Off
  13. 23. Fertilize right side with Cottonseed Meal
  14. 24. Pole Beans Recovering
  15. 25. Week Five <ul><li>Corn, Beans, and Squash growing </li></ul><ul><li>Replant Sunflowers </li></ul><ul><li>More compost tea applied to left side </li></ul>
  16. 29. Week Six <ul><li>First Week of June </li></ul><ul><li>Everything Growing </li></ul><ul><li>First Squash Flowers </li></ul>
  17. 30. End of June Hot and Dry
  18. 34. Week Seven <ul><li>Everything growing </li></ul><ul><li>First tiny squash plants </li></ul><ul><li>Still only two pathetic sunflowers </li></ul>
  19. 40. Only two pathetic sunflowers
  20. 41. Week Eight <ul><li>Pick first squash </li></ul><ul><li>Beautiful corn tassels </li></ul><ul><li>Ants farming aphids on some corn tassels </li></ul><ul><li>Spray aphids and ants with soapy water </li></ul>
  21. 44. Beautiful Corn Tassels
  22. 47. First Squash!! First Squash!!
  23. 48. Ants working Aphids on Corn
  24. 49. They were sprayed with soapy water!
  25. 50. Try one more time! Seed at home to transplant later in garden.
  26. 51. Week Nine <ul><li>Baby Ears of corn and corn silks appear </li></ul><ul><li>More squash picked </li></ul><ul><li>Aphids and Ants back on corn tassels </li></ul>
  27. 52. Aphids and Ants Back
  28. 53. Visitors !
  29. 54. More Visitors!
  30. 55. Cindy Grogan at LSEM
  31. 57. Week 10 <ul><li>First week of July </li></ul><ul><li>Ant and aphid problem </li></ul><ul><li>Fertilize with organic time-released fertilizer </li></ul><ul><li>Corn ears growing </li></ul>
  32. 62. 10-2-8
  33. 69. Short Beans
  34. 70. Week Eleven <ul><li>Squash ripe </li></ul><ul><li>Corn ripening </li></ul><ul><li>Corn aphids and ants </li></ul><ul><li>Pole Beans growing </li></ul>
  35. 75. Squash
  36. 76. Week Eleven Lemon Queen Sunflowers
  37. 77. Transplant more Lemon Queen Sunflowers
  38. 78. Bug problems
  39. 79. Glassy-winged Sharpshooter Homalodisca vitripennis
  40. 80. Glassy-winged Sharpshooter Homalodisca vitripennis
  41. 83. Corn Aphids and Ants
  42. 84. Week Eleven Lemon Queen Sunflowers
  43. 85. Transplant more Lemon Queen Sunflowers
  44. 86. Week Twelve <ul><li>Everything alive and growing </li></ul><ul><li>Baby Beans </li></ul><ul><li>“ Lemon Queen” sunflowers (looks a lot like “Mammoth”) peaking </li></ul>
  45. 90. Fresh Picked Squash
  46. 91. Baby Pole Beans
  47. 92. Sunflowers Used as a Trap Plant Glassy-winged Sharpshooter Homalodisca vitripennis
  48. 97. Sunflower transplants
  49. 100. Week Thirteen <ul><li>Green striped cushaws growing </li></ul><ul><li>Sunflowers headed down </li></ul>
  50. 107. Green Striped Cushaw leaves
  51. 109. Week Fourteen <ul><li>Large Sunflowers headed down </li></ul><ul><li>Beans twining up corn stalks </li></ul><ul><li>Ears of corn not full </li></ul>
  52. 132. Week 15 <ul><li>First week of August </li></ul><ul><li>Plants growing in heat and humidity </li></ul><ul><li>Large sunflowers headed downward and transplants slowly growing </li></ul>
  53. 145. Week Sixteen <ul><li>Corn ears drying on stalks </li></ul><ul><li>Beans growing </li></ul><ul><li>Cushaw growing </li></ul><ul><li>Sunflower seeds drying on large plants </li></ul><ul><li>Young sunflowers making flowers </li></ul>
  54. 153. Week Seventeen <ul><li>Squash borer problem </li></ul><ul><li>Corn drying on stalks </li></ul><ul><li>Young sunflowers growing </li></ul>
  55. 163. Week Twenty-One <ul><li>Mid September-Glitz and Grits week </li></ul><ul><li>Corn drying </li></ul><ul><li>Beans twining </li></ul><ul><li>Next wave of sunflowers blooming </li></ul><ul><li>Cushaw still growing (thanks to Jane Hall treating the squash borer!) </li></ul>
  56. 175. Week Twenty Three <ul><li>Cushaw still growing </li></ul><ul><li>Time to pick the corn </li></ul>
  57. 176. Cushaw still growing
  58. 178. Straight-neck squash done
  59. 179. Pole Beans Enjoying Rain and Cooler Weather
  60. 180. Corn!
  61. 194. Coming Full Cycle (Saving Seeds) By saving and replanting some of the seeds from their three sisters gardens, Native cultures brought the cycle of life full circle. Your may want to save some to replant or package and give to other gardeners. Below are some tips for gathering and preserving the seeds. Corn Leave several ears on the stalk until husks dry and turn brown. Remove and peel back the husks and hang them to dry, out of direct sun, for a month. Once they're dry, remove the individual kernels. Store them in an airtight container. (Note: If you save and replant seed from hybrid corn, the plants will not have their parents' good qualities.) Beans Leave several pods on a plant until they turn brown and brittle. Break open the pods and remove the seeds. Leave them on a flat surface or screen, out of direct sun, to air dry for a few days. Put them in an airtight, dark container protected from extreme heat and cold. Squash Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and rinse them with water in a colander. Follow the same instructions as listed for drying and storing beans.
  62. 195. Conclusions <ul><li>The 3 Sisters Garden was successful in that I had corn, beans, and squash, but, our tribe would have starved if it depended on this crop for survival. </li></ul><ul><li>The heavy spring and summer rains caused problems. </li></ul><ul><li>Pests must be addressed immediately. </li></ul><ul><li>Keeping records is very important. </li></ul><ul><li>What a great learning experience! </li></ul>
  63. 196. Thank You!! <ul><li>Dave Creech, my husband, for being patient, supportive, and answering a million questions. </li></ul><ul><li>Greg Grant of Stephan F. Austin State University for providing the heirloom seeds. </li></ul><ul><li>Hal Stuckman of EcoMulch for providing compost tea. </li></ul><ul><li>The Louisiana State Exhibit Museum Staff and Landscape Board for allowing me to grow the garden. </li></ul><ul><li>Jane Hall and Denyse Cummings for advice and continuous encouragement. </li></ul>