Leapfrog to Sustainable Mini Garden
The Three Sisters
having only enough to
stay alive .
Solution – Mini garden
to supplement food
Challenge – Space, good
soil, money for seeds,
• Companion Planting
– Planting different crops
Nutrient rich produce
History of the Three Sisters Sustainable
• Companion Planting has
been used for many
centuries by the Native
American Indians to get the
most nutrient benefits out
• The Indians taught this style
of gardening to the early
American settlers. Later it
was adopted by European
countries and developing
countries for both industrial
and small scale gardening.
Three Sisters – Corn, Bean, and Squash
• Corn (Maise)
• Beans (Legumes)
– High in Vitamins
– Seeds for oil
Planting Method for Three Sisters
Soil Preparation and Sowing Corn
• Soil Preparation:
• Select a small 4x4 or larger
location to start your mini
• Ensure the location that
gets 6-8 hours of sun daily.
• Add compost and other
material such as peat moss
or manure to the soil.
• Next year the nutrients from
the beans will help you have
good soil, this year you may
need to add a bit more
Planting Method – Sowing
First Sister - Corn
• Prepare several small mounds 3-4
• Sowing: Soak the corn seeds for a
few hours then plant 5-7 seeds
• Care: Water daily at first. Weed
while the plants grow. At 7 inches
high push some soil around the
young corn stalk for support .
• Beans: At 7 inches plant the beans
around the small corn stalk.
• Squash: Plant 5-7 squash seeds
every 7 mounds around the corn
stalk along with the bean seeds.
Harvesting the Three Sisters
Value added by increased food sources, can sell extra produce ,
and environmentally friendly. Small footprint and sustainable.
Corn may be harvested while in it's green corn
stage, but traditionally it is left to ripen and is
harvested in Autumn. Pull the tip of the ear
toward the ground until it snaps off.
Beans may be eaten fresh or allowed to
mature and dry on the vine. Fresh beans can
be harvested when the pods are firm and
crisp, but before the seeds within the pods
have begun to swell. Bean plants will continue
to flower and more bean pods will develop if
they are harvested before bean seeds can
Squash should be picked only after its skin has
hardened thoroughly. Store squash in a single
layer and not touching each other, which can
foster rot. Squash can last at least two
months, depending on the variety.