In southern areas of Australia NOW is the time to plant beans for a summer harvest. In northern/tropical areas plant beans in autumn & winter.
How: beans are one of the easiest veggies to grow from seed. And you can get a wider range of colourful varieties as seeds. But you will also be able to find them as punnets of 4-6 seedlings at your local nursery now.
Pots or garden bed: Either is fine. You will just need a pot that is big enough to take the supporting structure for the beans OR if planting in a pot choose dwarf beans as they don’t get as tall and don’t need a supporting structure.
Soaking the seed: Soak your bean seeds overnight in a glass of water, to help them wake up! It is wise to put in a few more bean seeds than you actually want to grow, as some may not germinate. So if I want 4 bean plants, I’d soak & plant 6 or 7 seeds.
Supporting your growing beans: Beans need some sort of support structure or trellis. You could use some thin stakes in a circle, tied at the top like a teepee or some garden trellis or a garden obelisk. Which ever method you choose, push the legs of the support structure in the ground first and then plant your seeds at the base of it.
Planting the seed: Sow the seeds directly where you want them. And it’s as easy as poking your index finger into the ground about 4-5 cm deep and popping the seed into the hole. Back fill with soil. Don’t water your seeds again until they germinate (they can rot otherwise).
Fertilising your growing beans: Beans really don’t need much fertiliser. In fact – because they are a legume, they actually put more nitrogen back into the soil….improving it for your next crop!! BUT a little pinch of sulfate of potash per plant will help with flowering and therefore your bean harvest.
The following websites have a huge selection of bean seeds or check out your local nursery.
So what have you BEAN waiting for…..get gardening this weekend!