Frontier people could grow many types of vegetables, from asparagus to zucchini. The three main crops were corn, beans, and squash.
Corn, beans, and squash are known as the “three sisters.” They are called that because they are planted in the same plot of land and benefit each other as they grow.
The corn grows tall for the beans stalks to climb up. The beans release nitrogen in the soil which helps the corn and squash grow. The wide leafs on the squash cover the ground which keeps weeds out and keeps moisture in.
One way they used corn was to dry it and mash it into cornmeal. Removing the corn from the cob had to be done by hand. They could also use the dried kernels and boil them to make hominy grits.
Husks from the corn could be used to weave and make items such as the seat of a chair.
The frontier people would grow many different varieties of beans. Some beans would be picked and eaten green, some would be dried and stored to boil and eat later.
Squash wouldn’t be eaten, but they would use it to make all kinds of useful items. They would remove the seeds and clean out the inside of the gourd. Then the dried shells could be used as containers for water or just about anything… even dried beans and corn!
Flax is a crop the frontier people grew for the purpose of turning it into linen to make clothing.