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Since the eating of the single snake bean,  2 more snake beans have since grown, bringing my total yield now to 3 snake beans. It’s a little pathetic referring to them in singular, countable terms but this is how it is for me. Anything more than 1 is a damn good thing.

I came home 2 days ago to discover that one of this 2 snake beans went missing! Mind you, don’t find me a drama queen but when you have only 2 precious snake beans hanging, you will find it quite a shock losing one.

So here’s how the conversation went between me and my mom for the accounting of the missing snake bean.

Me: Gasp! How come it’s missing???? (starting to get abit high pitched)

Mom: Your dad’s friend from China came just now to visit and took that snake bean back with him.

Me: What!!! He can’t just take it like that! Don’t they have snake beans in China?!?!? Why take mine?!?!?! (at this point, I am whining abit)

Mom: He says that the ones he grows in his backyard are not as long as yours, so he wants your snake bean for its seeds to grow them back home.

Me: Oh.

Since then, I find it so great that my snakebeans seeds will be going far away from here and continuing its line and flourishing somewhere in a backyard in China where there will be alot more space than my balcony. 

So uncle, I’m totally cool about it now, it’s okay for you to take my snakebean. Grin.  

More updates: I have counted 3 more flowers to date so we should have some more snakebeans coming. Yippee.  

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Here’s how you cook just one snake bean:

Step 1: You get your mom to cut it up while she’s very amused that you have to take pictures of the whole process

Step 2: Stir fry with anchovies and egg

 

Step 3: Serve.  Portion enough for 3 mouthfuls.

 

Pathetic recipe aside, my verdict is that home-grown vegetables is still the BEST! 

Simply because I watered, watched and waited for it. Full stop. 

I came home happily from the local supermarket last evening and was completely shocked and to see this hanging amongst my snake bean plants.

 

A full grown snake bean!

Where did that come from? I blinked and my first reaction was to scream for my mom because she is famous for her pranks. She once produced a 3 year old lottery ticket (we call it 4D here) bearing the first prize numbers of that day’s draw. I jumped in jubilation for awhile before realising that the ticket has expired, bearing the same winning numbers no doubt, but the ticket was bought 3 years ago. This is the extent of my mom’s pranks. This woman actually keeps her 4D tickets for years, waiting for her chance to play such a prank. So I doubted the snake bean at first, she could have stuck it on for all I knew. 

Upon closer inspection, it’s for real! After lamenting and mooning for weeks, I suddenly have a full grown surprise snake bean and it’s 22.5 inches already! Still scratching my head on this, but nevertheless, happy. Yes, even if it is just one snake bean.

Our deduction was that it could be growing at the very top of the blinds and was rustled from its resting postion during the heavy rain and hence, just dropped to its current position. I have a strange balcony of plants, first my lemon balm, now this.

My mom joked that it is my one yield snake bean. 5 plants and close to 3 months of waiting produces just one yield.

But behold, I saw some more flowers! Happy as a lark. Which means I’ve got about 4 more snake beans to come. I’ve never seen snake bean flowers before and they look great! Thanks everyone for your words of encouragement. I thought it will never happen but it’s true! It did!

The snake bean plants has been deteriorating rapidly this few days (not sure if it’s the freaky weather) and we might have to take everything down after this batch has finished growing their snake beans. But in retrospect, I’ve learnt alot about how better to grow them (no overcrowding and provide ample trellis cos they climb like mad and need good support) and the feeling of finally having grown something is just great. 

 

I was out of town for 9 days and look what happened to my snake beans.

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I’ve been trying to “encourage” them to grow around their trellis but I guess they had a mind of their own. This means I can’t lower that portion of the blind anymore. Not that I really mind since their leaves create a nice silhouette too, just that I am amused by their progress.

I swear they looked triumphant. Like “Har! We did it! We made it to the blinds before she came back!”

Continued to check on the progress of my other plants and GASP! What is it that I see?

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My first flower!

It’s from one of the cherry tomato plants and it looks like there are 2 more smaller flower buds in fact. Fantastic! Didn’t knew it could be so exhilarating discovering your first flower.  It’s like you’re not growing just stems and leaves anymore. SWEET!

This first flower hasn’t bloom fully yet. I know successful germination of the flower to bear fruits is another hurdle but I’m basking in happiness for now cos this means that I am one step closer to tasting red, juicy & delicious home-grown cherry tomatoes.

This Disney tune popped up in my head suddenly while I was admiring my first flower…

“Skippity Do Dar, Skippity Day… My O My, It’s A Wonderful Day!”

It sure is a wonderful day!

 snake-beans-climbing.jpg

Snake Bean A: Pssst… guys, guess what I heard…  (conspiratorial whispering)

Rest of the Snake Beans: (gasps in horror) What do you mean she doesn’t know how tall we’ll be growing until? This is insulting. We’re at the end of our trellis already, her bamboo pole support sucks.

Snake Bean A: Look, it’s her first time growing anything, she has extended our bamboo poles already and we have not stopped growing still. She’s already at her wits end and wondering whether our continuous upward growth is due to overcrowding. Give her a break.

Rest of the Snake Beans: But we’re not going to stop. We are meant to climb… for reaching new heights! We’re aiming for the blinds!

Snake Bean A: Wait! Wait! She’s even considering whether to pull 2 of us out so that the rest of us will have more space. She’s worried that we might not flower at all.

Rest of the Snake Beans: But this is preposterous! You can’t expect us to just stop now. We must reach for new heights!  

Snake Bean A: Guys, guys, please. Just try to lie low take it easy for now. Please?

The snake beans plants have started to creep around their bamboo trellis about 5 days ago. I am so amazed at their instinctive ability to seek out the support and slowly creep its way upwards. For a city raised person who hasn’t grown anything before, this is a very interesting thing to observe. Pardon my gushing as this is such a trivial, common sight for gardeners. I promise to get a grip on myself.

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My snake beans are almost touching the top of the balcony railings. The yellow arrows mark the height of each plant now. The blue line marks their average height 2 weeks ago.

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The lone lemon balm seedling was joined by 6 other seedlings about 5 days ago. Guess it wasn’t a lone ranger like I thought, just an early starter.

lemon-balm-seedling1.jpg

Dill is coming along nicely, but looks abit overcrowded, doesn’t it? But I have no heart to pull any out. Could I just leave it as it is? Or will they be able to stand being transplanted to another container? Maybe I’ll try transplanting some.

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Parsley is coming along nicely too.

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Chives are a half-hearted dismal affair. Could it be the soil that I am using?

chives-seedlings.jpg

Out of the original 10 cherry tomato seedlings that sprouted, I have kept 5 of them. Transplanted 2 into their individual plastic bottle containers and kept 3 in the original pot for now. They are coming along nicely too.

cherry-tomato-seedlings1.jpg

After the mouldy Okra seed incident, one wonderful Okra seedling managed to germinate out of a batch of 8 seeds that I tried to sow again. I will try to germinate some again so that I could have at least 2 Okra plants. I love steamed Okra.

okra-seedling.jpg

I give up on Coriander. There seems to be no sucess whatsoever, no matter how I try to germinate them. Will listen to advice and get new fresh seeds.  My mom seems to be mocking me silently with the way she continues to grow her coriander that she bought from the market.

coriander-in-mug.jpg

 snake-bean-seedlings.jpg

Terribly pleased with the progress of the snake beans. They seem to be growing awfully fast. They’ve grown to be about 3 inches tall since their germination 2 mornings ago. Their speedy growth is a great assurance to me. At least something is growing.

Other seeds that germinated are the dill and the cherry tomato seeds. Wonderful.

dill-seedlings.jpg

Dill – Germination Success Rate 50%

What I find particularly hard to germinate are the coriander and lemon balm seeds for some reason and have since attempted germination of a new batch on Jiffy Plant Starters.

Spotted lady finger seeds (okra) while purchasing the Jiffy Plant Starters and couldn’t resist buying them cos they are suppose to another easy to grow plant in our hot climate. After the lady fingers, I’m stopping with buying new seeds. Shall not be too greedy for now…

Guess what was the beautiful sight that greeted me this morning when I woke up?

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 Woohoo! Then guess what’s an even more beautiful sight than this?

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WooHooHoo! All five of my snake bean seeds have sprouted!

And 3 days ahead of their original germination dates! I’m so proud of them.

I didn’t expect all 5 to make it but I am damn glad that they did. Hello babies! Coincidentally, they are the biggest seeds amongst all the rest that I planted. Size does matter in this case?

Now I am wondering when to start fertilizing, whether the soil is suitable for their growth, will they be able to stand direct sun since they’re so young, etc, etc… I guess we’ll have to learn by trial and error along the way. But the problem is I can take the trials but I cannot take the errors (cross my fingers). Will check up more information on the internet.  

Meanwhile, I’m basking in happiness.

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About Me

Limited apartment space is not a deterrent to my garden dreams. I’m no green-thumb but always have alot of hope and optimism.

I’m located in Singapore, a tropical Asian country.

Comments, especially gardening tips, are greatly welcomed. Thanks for dropping by! Teresa

Stuff That I Am Attempting To Grow

Cherry Tomato
Chives
Coriander
Curled Parsley
Dill
Lemon Balm
Okra (lady's finger)
Snake Bean (yardlong bean)