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Rosie A BT

Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 10 months ago


The Bean Trees




"The whole Tucson Valley lay in front of us, resting in its cradle of mountains. The sloped desert plain that lay between us and the city was like a palm stretched out for a fortuneteller to read, with its mounds and hillocks, its life lines and heart lines of dry stream beds."


-Taylor, Page 169





"But it didn't seem to matter to Turtle, she was happy where she was. The sky went from dust-color to gray and then cool black sparked with stars, and she was still wide awake. She watched the dark highway and entertained me with her vegetable-soup song,, except that now there were people mixed in with the beans and potatoes: Dwayne Ray, Mattie, Esperanza, Lou Ann and all the rest. And me. I was the main ingredient."


-Taylor, Page 246





"But Turtle shook her head. 'Bean trees,' she said, as plainly as if she had been thinking about it all day. We looked where she was pointing. Some of the wisteria flowers had gone to seed, and all these wonderful long green pods hung down from the branches. They looked as much like beans as anything you'd ever care to eat.

'Will you look at that,' I said. It was another miracle. The flower trees were turning into bean trees."


-Taylor and Turtle, Page 151



Quote of the Novel


"But this is the most interesting part: wisteria vines, like other legumes, often thrive in poor soil, the book said. Their secret is something called rhizobia. These are microscopic bugs that live underground in little knots on the roots. They suck nitrogen gas right out of the soil and turn it into fertilizer for the plant.

The rhizobia are not actually part of the plant, they are separate creatures, but they always live with legumes: a kind of underground railroad moving secretly up and down roots.

'It's like this.' I told Turtle. 'There's a whole invisible system for helping out the plant that you'd never guess would be there.'

I loved this idea. 'It's just the same as with people. The way Edna has Virgie and Virgie has Edna, and Sandi has Kid Central Station, and everybody has mattie. And on and on.'

The wisteria vines on their own would just barely get by, is how I explained it to Turtle, but put them together with rhizobia an dthey make miracles."


-Taylor to Turtle, Page 241

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