First of all, I’m not 100% sure I’ve identified this right. So please correct me if it’s not Dodonaea viscosa, but something else.
This pretty bush, which grows wild in our farm, has an unusual use. It makes a perfect support for peas. You pick some branches and lay them flat on a rock with some heavy weights over them. In a few days, they’ll have dried flat, and you can stick them in rows between your pea seeds or seedlings. You have to do this before they put out their first tendrils, as they are so delicate.
Like many things gardening, I learnt this trick from Raju. And also like many things in every field, I found there’s nothing new in this. There’s an actual thing called pea sticks, cut from hazel trees. I found, after I’d done a very amateurish job, that there’s more to it than we knew. It seems you have to weave the twigs together to make a really good frame. Next time I’ll do better.
For now, my peas are doing reasonably well, along the sides of what I hope will be a grape arbour some day. The grape plants don’t share my hopes or ambitions, so I’m bringing them with all kinds of goodies.
Pretty and useful! A great discovery!