Threshing soup peas and garbanzos with friends
Somehow I've completely neglected to blog for over 6 weeks, while meanwhile, the entire harvest season has come and gone. It's been a busy time! Right now I am relaxing in Missoula, Montana, with friends who also appreciate the art of growing quinoa, dry beans, and garbanzos.
The 2011 harvest season was the best so far for BBGP. The late summer sunshine and beautiful dry september was perfect for drying down all of the crops that matured. The cool summer meant that the soybeans and amaranth struggled and didn't mature well, but everything else was primo. The dry beans yielded about twice as well as last year, wildly exceeding my expectations. All of the beans are threshed and the grains and peas are all threshed but needing to be winnowed.
We had a number of successful work parties this year, so I want to give a shout out to all those who came and learned and helped and had fun. It's truly more enjoyable with company! We had a couple of great articles published this summer as well: in the June issue of GROW NW magazine and the October issue of the Community Food Co-op's newsletter. Thank you to the writers/editors for helping to get the word out about what we are doing. Lastly, I was invited by Tom Thornton, of Cloud Mountain Nursery, to have my dry beans and grains on display at the annual Fruit Festival. It was a very exciting weekend and I enjoyed chatting with hundreds of folks over the two days.
My cohorts and I are now busily planning for next season. A collaborative storage foods CSA is in the works for next year, I am putting the finishing touches on an instruction manual for growing dry beans & grains in the Pacific NW, we are planning workshops for winter and spring, and I am gearing up for seed sales, hoping to have everything ready by December. Thanks to everyone who provided motivation, encouragement, and enthusiasm this year. I feel especially confident that this project deserves my attention and passion and I look forward to diving in even deeper.
Krista is a life-long resident of Whatcom County, Washington State. She has been gardening and farming in the area for over 15 years.