|9 per square foot||Summer||Sun|
Self watering containers like ours and beans are a match made in heaven, not only can containers house a dozen and a half bush bean plants, they provide a constant source of water, which beans thrive off of.
The word bean covers many different types of beans, the most common being bush and pole. Bush beans are prolific and easy to grow and unlike pole beans, they grow close to the ground.
How do I Grow Bush Beans?
Most beans with the exception of fava (broad) don’t like cold weather. Don’t grow beans in soil that is colder than 15 C (60 F). Beans that have been grown in cool soil will germinate slowly and they are more prone to disease later in life.
Sow bean seeds 1 inch deep and 4 inches apart, the seeds will sprout in 5-10 days. When the beans have grown and its time to harvest, make sure to harvest often as beans become less productive as summer wears on.
Bush beans yield one large crop all at once, then a smaller crop a few weeks later. If you want a continuous harvest, plant a new square foot of different bush varieties every two weeks all summer long.
Harvest bush beans by breaking or cutting each stem holding a bean pod, be sure not to pull the plant and damage the vine. The best beans are the small and tender ones, so pick those and try not let the beans get to big because they will lose their flavour. Regularly harvesting your beans will also produce great tasting pods.
Beans are a good source of iron, calcium, vitamin A & C, maganese, phosphorus, folate, riboflavin, thiamin, niacin, copper and protein.
Preparing and using
If you don’t plan on using your beans right away, wash them and place in the fridge. Beans don’t store well, so they need to be used quickly after you pick them. Beans can be eaten raw or you can steam, boil, or stir fry them.
Helpful Tips and Tricks
If you notice your bush beans starting to get a little floppy and spread all over the container, you can run string around the beans, bundling them in groups to help provide structure and to keep them in their container. Use an inoculant when planting beans to increase the nitrogen that gets captured in their roots.