Marti’s Corner – 112

May 31, 2023

Hi Everyone,

I pulled up some carrots that I planted in November to see how they would do in the winter.


One thing about gardening is……. you realize HOW MUCH food you would need to grow to “live off of it”.  You also realize how much cheaper it is to just buy it at the store!!!

I grew these in a small 4-gallon bucket.  So, not too bad.

Garden carrots will wilt quickly.  Follow this advice to keep them crisp longer.  How to Store Carrots – Best Ways to Keep Carrots Fresh & Last Longer

Oh, and BTW, these are pretty good compared to some of the others.  LOL


This is the “Side of the House” garden.  It gets about 5 hours of sun a day.

Side House Garden

This is the garden that has expanded into part of the lawn.  It was a hard sell, but there is much more sun here.  It’s great today, but we’ll see what happens when the temperatures get to 100!!!

Garden and Lawn

This week it’s time to feed the plants again.  If you are not doing this on a regular basis, your plants will not thrive.  Here is what I use.

Organic Plus

See how it says mycorrhizae microbes on the front?  Super good for your soil.

Dr Earth Fertilizer

See how it says TruBiotic?  Also, mycorrhizae inside.  I got both of them at Lowes.  I’m SURE they have them at Home Depot as well.  See the numbers:  This one is 4-6-3.  The first number promotes green growth, like for lettuce or spinach, or leafy veggies.  The second number promotes flowering for tomatoes, squash, peppers….anything that needs a flower to have fruit.  

The last number promotes roots:  carrots, beets, turnips, etc.  Both of these have balanced numbers.  

    Do I use different fertilizers for each kind of plant?  No, no, no.  That’s WAY too much work.  One size fits all, and I can add something else if I want to.

 I usually add a little compost or worm castings as well for plants with lots of green.  And… I may add some blood meal for root plants.  EXCEPTION do NOT add nitrogen to peas and beans.  They produce their own nitrogen!


In an emergency, you may not have access to meat.  If the power is out, your freezer meat will spoil within 2-3 days.  Hopefully, you have some canned meat on hand.  Otherwise, you need beans and grains to fill the protein deficiency that will arise.

If you have NEVER cooked dry beans, you have a few choices.  ALL choices start with washing the beans and looking for small rocks or dirt clods that CAN and DO escape the cleaning process at the factory.

1)  Short-soak method.  Boil beans for only 3 minutes.  Cover and set aside for an hour.  Dry beans absorb as much water in one hour when soaking is started by first boiling for 3 minutes as they do in 15 hours of cold water!!!!  This method reduces hard-to-digest complex sugars by 80%.

Proceed to cook (see below)

2)  long soak method – Soak the beans overnight.  Drain and discard water and rinse the beans.  Cover with clean water and proceed with cooking.  This method does NOT reduce complex sugars as effectively.  Proceed to cook.

COOKING:  After soaking, drain water and cover beans with clean water.  Use 3-4 c. water for each cup of dry beans.  Don’t add salt or any acidic flavoring like tomato sauce or lemon.  Add these only AFTER the beans are cooked all the way through.  

  • 1 c. dry beans = 2 1/2 c. cooked beans


As beans age, the skin becomes tough and the beans will not soak up the water.  Instead of discarding them, just crack them.  You can use a grinder with the burrs open, a sturdy blender on the coarsest grind possible.  Use the pulse button on 1/4 c. beans at a time.  And…… my favorite, put several cups of beans inside 2 grocery bags, lay the bag on a cement sidewalk or driveway, and smack it with the side of a hammer.

Do NOT mix old and new beans.

How much should you store:  2 1/2 pounds of dried beans per person per month, or 1 #10 can of beans. One pound bags of beans are about $1.25 at Winco.  One pound = about 3 c. of dried beans = 7 1/2 c. cooked beans.  

Okay, follow me here, don’t get lost in the math.  

  • 1 pound dried beans = 7 c. cooked beans………then
  • 2 1/2 pounds dried beans = 17.5 c. cooked beans.  This is only 1/2 c. per day of cooked beans.  It’s not very much food.  BUT can supplement other things like rice and pasta!!  

You can store beans in food-grade buckets in their original packaging, or pour into clean and dry 2 liter bottles.  You can also vacuum seal beans.  Of course, you can buy #10 cans of pre packed beans.

Pinto Beans – Case of 6 cans | United States Store  Case of 6 cans $59.30 ($9.80 per can) (about 15 pounds for $3.92 per pound)

Emergency Essentials® Pinto Beans Large Can – Be Prepared – Emergency Essentials $15.99 per can, but you can just buy one. ($6.40 per pound)

Augason Farms Pinto beans Emergency Bulk Food Storage 4 gallon Pail 253 Servings 24 pounds $63 about $ 2.62 per pound.

MISC. PURCHASE: Sunscreen and insect repellant

This is the time of year that these go on sale.  Just get a couple of each!


Mixed Beans and More

Serves 10 so adjust accordingly!!

  • 1 1/2 c. dried black beans, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 c. dried pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1 1/2 c. dried kidney beans, rinsed

      (You can actually use any combination of these, including lima beans and butter beans)

Boil for 3 minutes, then let sit 1 hour.  Drain soaking water and cover with clean water.  Boil until beans are tender and cooked through about 30 minutes.  Drain beans and set aside.

  • 1 lb. andouille sausage, chopped
  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

     Cook and stir in a large skillet over medium-high heat until beef is browned and crumbly, 5-10 minutes.  Drain fat.

Place beans, sausage mix, and

  • 1 c. corn
  • 1 c. water
  • 3/4 c. salsa
  • 3/4 c. tomato-based chili sauce
  • 2 TB white vinegar
  • salt and pepper to taste

           Place in a slow cooker.  Stir.  Cook on high for 4 hours, stirring occasionally.

Ham and Beans and More

  • 1 lb. dried Great Northern beans, sorted and rinsed
  • 4 c. water

     Boil for 3 minutes, then let stand 1 hour.  Drain

     Combine the soaked beans, another 4 c. water

  • 1/4 c. celery, chopped
  • 1 mall onion, chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dried parsley

     Combine into a slow cooker

  • 1 TB butter
  • 1 TB olive oil

     Melt the butter and oil in a skillet.  Stir in the leeks until tender and the smaller pieces start to brown 8-10 min.

  • 2 leeks (bulb onl), cut in half lengthwise

     Add the leeks to the slow cooker.  In the same pan, cook and stir:

  • 1 lb. cooked ham, cut into bite-size pieces until the edges start to brown, then stir into the soup.  In the same pan fry up
  • 5 slices bacon – until the bacon is crisp.  Cut into bite-sized pieces and stir into the soup.
  • 4 c. chicken stock – Pour into the hot skillet and stir to dissolve any flavor bits from the skillet, then pour into the soup.
  • 1 pinch salt to taste
  • 1 pinch pepper to taste

     Set the cooker to low and cook 6-8 hours.  Roughly mash about 1/2 the beans in a blender or with a potato masher to thicken the soup.

Split Pea Soup

  • 1 pound of dried split peas, rinsed
  • 2 quarts water

     Combine in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce and simmer 45 minutes or until the peas are soft.

  • 1 1/2 c. sliced carrots
  • 1 c. chopped onion
  • 1 c. diced cooked ham
  • 1/2 tsp allspice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper

    (I REALLY like to add 2 c. diced potatoes)!!!

     Simmer for 30 min.  Add a little boiling water if the soup is too thick.  Remove bay leaves.  Serve


Marti Shelley

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3 months ago

Well done Marti ,great garden info and receipes all round.

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