Agripedia

Beans Cultivation Guide: Know the Planting, Growing, Harvesting and Varieties of this Winter Vegetable

Green bean is one of the most loved, easily grown and evergreen winter vegetables which you can grow in your kitchen garden. The best part is that green beans can be grown even in a very limited space which is incredibly productive. This green vegetable comes with numerous health benefits. Beans and legumes are the fruits or seeds of a family of plants called Fabaceae. It is consumed around the world and is a rich source of fiber and B vitamins. Beans and legumes have a number of health benefits, including reducing cholesterol, decreasing blood sugar levels and increasing healthy gut bacteria.

Let’s get the idea of planting, growing, and harvesting green beans—both the pole bean type and bush bean type.

Know the Varieties of Beans

Chinese (aka Asian) long beans: slender 1- to 2-foot pods.

French green beans (aka haricot verts): thin, tender, 3- to 5-inch pods. Try ‘Calima’, ‘Masai’, or ‘Maxibel’; in a container, plant ‘Mascotte’. All bush.

Italian/Romano: wide, flat 6- to 8-inch pods even in the hottest summers. Try ‘Early Bush Italian’, extra-large-pod ‘Jumbo’, or ‘Roma II’. All bush.

Purple beans: 5- to 6-inch pods are deep purpose when raw and turn green when cooked. Try ‘Amethyst’, ‘Royal Burgandy’, or ‘Velour’. All bush.

Snap beans (aka string beans or stringless): slender, 5- to 7-inch pods. Try ‘Blue Lake 274’ (bush), heirloom ‘Kentucky Wonder’ (bush or pole), or ‘Provider’ (bush).

Yellow wax beans: 5- to 7-inch pods with a milder flavor than green varieties.

‘Bean Mascotte’ (bush): Compact, ideal for container gardens.

Important Things to Remember while Sowing Green Beans

Planting Beans

Beans best grow in the soil even with normal fertility. Moreover, beans don’t need supplemental fertilizer because they have the capacity to fix their own nitrogen. However, poor soil needs to be replaced with aged manure or compost in the fall prior to planting. 

Studies say that seeds are best down directly in the ground anytime after the last spring frost. It is advised to not plant too early or the cool soil will delay germination and the seeds could also rot.

It is also advised to not start green bean seeds indoors; they may not survive to transplant.

Sow bush bean seeds 1 inch deep and 2 inches apart in rows 18 inches apart. Plant a little deeper in sandy soils.

If you like pole beans, another easy support for them is a “cattle panel”—a portable section of wire fence—16 feet long and 5 feet tall. The beans will climb with ease and you won’t have to get into contorted positions to pick them.

Rotate crops each year.

How to Take Care of Plant

  • To retain moisture; make sure that the soil is well-drained. Beans have shallow roots so mulch keeps them cool.

  • You need to water regularly, from the start of the pod to set, about 2 inches per week. If you do not keep beans well watered, they will stop flowering. Water on sunny days so foliage will not remain soaked.

  • If necessary, fertilize after heavy bloom and the set of pods. Butavoid a high-nitrogen fertilizer or you will get lush foliage and few beans. Just add a side dressing of compost or composted mature halfway through their growing season.

  • Weed diligently and use shallow cultivation to prevent disturbing the root systems.

  • Pinch out the tops of pole beans when they reach the top of the support to force them to put energy into producing more pods.

  • In high heat, use row covers; hot weather can cause blossoms to drop from plants, reducing harvest.

Harvesting of Green Beans

  • Harvest beans in the morning when their sugar level is highest.

  • Green beans are picked young and tender before the seeds inside have fully developed. 

  • Pick green beans every day; the more you pick, the more beans grow.

  • Look for firm, sizable that are firm and can be snapped, generally as thick as a pencil. 

  • Snap or cut off the plant, do not tear the plant. Fresh beans should snap easily when broken.

  • Once you see the seeds inside bulging, green beans are past their peak and will taste tough.

  • Store beans in a moisture-proof, airtight container in the refrigerator. Beans will toughen over time even when stored properly.

  • Beans can be kept fresh for about 4 days, or blanched and frozen immediately after harvesting.

 



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