Pinecone Magic

“Pinecone Magic,” Friend, Dec. 1987, 11

Pinecone Magic

Find pinecone that has lost all its seeds, and soak it in water overnight. The next morning pinecone will be tightly closed. Remove it from water and set in sun to dry out. As pinecone dries, it will open again.

Next, hold pinecone underwater until entire cone is wet. Press several dried beans, such as pintos, limas, or chickpeas, between scales. Place seed-filled cone in jar of water, anchor large end of cone to bottom of jar with small rocks or piece of clay, and set jar in sunny window.

In a few days, beans will sprout. During growth period, you will need to add water to jar. When sprouts are about an inch (2.5 cm) long, they can be eaten. If left in cone, they will grow for several weeks and may even bloom. But when all nutrients from seeds have been absorbed, plants will die.

If you want beans to continue growing, carefully transplant inch-long sprouts to garden.