Thought I’d share one of my little gardening tricks. I’d like to say it’s something I learned after much hard work, trial and error, but the truth is it’s the result of my cheapness and ultimately laziness. You grow peas on a trellis, right? But they don’t stay there–they will happily ignore the provided trellis and just tangle amongst themselves on the ground until they are a giant birds nest of tangled mess. Peas need to be tied. You can buy ties, which costs money you’d rather spend on something else, or you can use recycled old bits of string, thread, twist ties. Either way you have to go back after a few weeks and collect the old ties to keep your garden from becoming a pea tie trash dump. Too much work.
One day I was in a rush and hadn’t brought out enough old twist-ties, so out of frustration I grabbed a single long grass blade–something I had meant to weed earlier that weekend, and used it to secure my pea vine to the trellis. I was able to easily secure the vine to the trellis and tie a double knot.
This ended up being one of my greatest strokes of genius (at least when it comes to peas!). Not only were my pea ties already out in the garden, but now I didn’t have to weed as much! Talk about a fail-proof excuse! The grass blades don’t bruise the vines the way my old twist-ties did, and I don’t have to go back and remove them later.
Above is a picture of a grass blade I used as a twist tie about two weeks ago. It is now very brittle, and the next time it rains it will break and degrade on its own. After two weeks of being secured, though, my pea vine has grown and secured itself to that section–it no longer needs the tie. When the grass blade drops, it will compost in the garden box and provide nitrogen. I don’t think pea ties get more eco-friendly then this.