Focused on seasonally, organically, locally and ethically sourced dishes; this blog is interspersed with posts on gardening, seed saving, soap making and Food Ethics.
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Growing beans may seem challenging at first, during the sprouting phase, but growing beans once the sprouts are planted in the ground is quite easy.
Good preparation and early care will lead to a rewarding bounty of bushels and bushels of beans!
Beans prefer warm weather and should not be planted until the frosts are well past. They should be grown in spots that receive full sun in well drained, fluffy, fertilized soil. Preparing the soil with compost and manure before planting is highly recommended. Beans come in numerous varieties consisting of both bush and pole types. Deciding what variety of bean you want to grow and whether to grow the bush or pole type plant is important when you are planning your garden.
Green beans are probably the most widely grown in the vegetable garden. They adapt quite well to a variety of soil types, provided the location is in an area with good drainage. They are also available in both bush and pole types. When harvesting green beans, pick them once they have reached adequate size but do not allow them to over ripen. When they are too ripe, the pod becomes tough, and the bean will taste bitter.
Yellow beans only come in the bush variety. They are quite similar to green beans in all aspects with exception to taste and tenderness. Lima beans, or butter beans,
come in both bush or pole varieties. These beans are flat and rounded with a very distinct flavor.
Lima beans should be planted a week or two later than other garden beans. Navy beans, Black-eyed peas, or cowpeas, are popular and easy to grow. Peas are highly nutritious, tasty, and easily grown.
Peas are more preferable in cool weather climates and should be planted early. Most beans combine well with other crops that are grown in the garden. Consider growing a Three Sister Garden.
Beans will grow nearly anywhere. These types of beans require staking with supports such as bamboo, string, a fence, trellis, or ladder. Sunflowers or corn stalks can also be used for bean supports. Pole beans can be planted in hills or rows.
Before you plant, however, it helps to incorporate the staking support of your choosing for the beans to climb on once they have reached adequate size.
Growing pole beans gives you the advantage of maximizing your space, and the beans grow straighter and are easier to pick. Beans need adequate moisture;
water bean plants about once a week or more frequently during dry weather. The use of organic mulches, such as straw, grass clippings, or composted leaves will help to retain moisture and control weeds.
Beans are susceptible to a variety of insects with beetles being the most common; these insects can easily be picked off by hand or sprayed with soapy water.
Excessive heat and humidity can cause a variety of disease problems in beans. The more common of these diseases are bacterial or wilt diseases, but there are numerous varieties of beans available that are disease tolerant. To make these newspaper bean boxes visit No Ordinary Homestead.