Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Pole beans and trellises

By mid-August, bean season has officially begun.  We did have some earlier bush bean harvests, as those are quicker to produce.  Pole (or runner) beans, in contrast, take a few months to get going.  Most of these were planted mid-May to mid-June, starting slow, then spreading out as vines, and now are producing lots of beans.   Below are shown a few different trellising methods.

Sorghum plant
I have a few bean vines climbing sorghum plants.  It's a big success in this photo, but the weight of the plants and pods, has felled some other sorghum plants.  This is still worth trying with sorghum, sunflowers, and corn if done sparingly (as they are similar to sorghum but a bit more delicate).


To the right are some scarlet runner beans on a normal, wooden stake and twine trellis.  I planted bean and cucumber seeds the recommended 3 or 4 inches apart, and this is a good example of how full they will grow when doing well.  Next year I may finally learn and keep the plants 6" or more apart.  It is possible to over-plant beans and jeopardize the yield by overcrowding.

These purple podded pole beans are growing against a fence at a school garden.  This type of wrought iron fence is a bit too slippery and wide for beans to latch on to, so it's necessary to add some type of trellis netting or twine, as I have done.  With such assistance, the beans will engulf the fence.

Below are some more pole beans that are trellising on chain-linked fences, which seem to do just fine.

No comments:

Post a Comment