Growing Green Beans
Grow Sweet, Crunchy Green Beans in Your Garden
Subspecies: Phaseolus vulgaris
Bush beans support themselves and do not need staking. They are low maintenance and generally produce less beans than pole bean plants.
Pole beans require some type of staking or support. Pole beans generally produce 3 times the number of pole beans given the same growing conditions.
When growing green beans, both variants need the same type of maintenance with the exception that pole beans must be staked or somehow supported. Read on for our full guide on how to grow green beans.
Plant Bush bean seeds directly in the ground after last frost. Do not plant before soil is consistently in the 65° – 75°F range. Bush beans need to be planted at a depth of 1 inch. There should be 2 inches between seeds and 18 – 24 inches between rows. Continue planting bean seed until summer high temps have been reached and you will be able to harvest beans throughout the summer into fall.
Pole beans need to be planted at a depth of 2 inches on small mounds of dirt or in a circle formation around the base of a stake or in cages. There should be 16 inches between soil mounds. If Pole beans are being grown on a trellis or against a fence there should be 3 inches between plants.
Beans should not be planted in overly wet soil or the beans will crack and split.
Bean roots are directly below the surface so care should be taken not to break or disturb them while weeding.
Harvest the beans when they are firm and crisp when broken or ‘snapped.’ Beans should be picked after 2pm when the sun is no longer at its highest point. This is the driest time of day for beans. Beans are susceptible to blight and handling wet plants can spread this disease. Be careful not to break the stems when removing the pods. If pods are removed with care, the stems will keep producing new beans.
Bush Bean varieties successful in the home garden are: Bush Kentucky Wonder and Derby. Successful pole varieties are Blue Lake, Kentucky Blue and Kentucky Wonder.
Mexican bean beetles can be picked off the plants manually and destroyed. It is important to destroy any leftover plant debris if borers are present.
A direct and steady spray of water will displace aphids from the plants. This should be done before the sun is directly overhead so plants will not be scorched.
Spider mites can be removed in the same manner as aphids.
Green beans can be preserved by freezing or canning. Younger, smaller beans will keep more of their flavor and color, so larger beans should be used for short term keeping and cooking, and the smaller beans preserved. Green beans need to be blanched before freezing.