bean poles

willow bean pole

There’s nothing like the flavor of pole beans fresh from the garden. And even more satisfying is growing¬† your own willow rods for making a trellis.

pole beans at Dunbar Gardens

pole beans at Dunbar Gardens

I use some of the larger willow rods for pole beans. Varieties like Harrison’s or Continental Osier produce stout 8 to 10 foot rods. This year I also used some of the three year old peeled willow I showed in an earlier post about peeling willow bark. I put metal fence posts in about every 10 feet and run a heavy gauge wire along the top. Then I insert the dried willow rods several inches in the ground at an angle and tie them with a short piece of twine to the wire.

yellow romano beans

yellow romano beans

One of our favorite varieties to grow are these Italian yellow romanos – Meraviglia di Venezia.

Rufous Hummingbird on a willow bean pole

Rufous Hummingbird on a willow bean pole

An added benefit is the fun watching the birds use the willow as a perch like this hummingbird waiting to zip down to the adjacent zinnias.

Rufous Hummingbird

Rufous Hummingbird

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Parrot basket

Sparki's parrot cage

Sparki’s parrot cage

Katherine recently completed weaving this parrot cage. It was a commission for a customer in nearby Anacortes, WA. She has a parrot named Sparki who gets thoroughly upset if the people go outside on the deck for coffee and leave her behind in the house. So the idea was to get a basket to put Sparki in for the outside on the deck or in the garden. (Just to be clear – the parrot does not live in the basket.) The basket needed a lid so that Michele could open it to place a metal perch she has inside. The lid is woven tight so that the parrot doesn’t perceive any predator threats from above. It has a front door for putting in the parrot. It has side handles to carry it. The basket is a little like a fitched laundry hamper. The door and its opening did provide some technical challenge to make.

parrot cage base

parrot cage base

staked up

staked up

fitching

fitching

before the top waling

before the top waling

the door

the door

the door latch

the door latch

side handle

side handle

parrot basket lid

parrot basket lid

parrot basket

parrot basket

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