Baby bean plants…

Sep 12, 2009

If you seeded some beans in August, you should have some nice little plants going by now. This is one bed of mixed bush beans I planted the last week of August. There were originally more seedlings but they've been thinned. Annual bush beans, black-eyed peas and other quick maturing beans can be planted in August or the first week of September in our area for a fall harvest. Look for maturity dates (on the seed packets) of around 70 or less days for fall planting. The varieties that mature in 50-65 days are best. Legumes are Nitrogen fixers and can help improve the nutrient content of your soil. It's a good idea to rotate legumes around your garden each year to improve your soil.

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While I don't happen to have anything else planted in this bed, bush beans don't take up much space and you can easily inter-crop them with other plants in the garden. During the heat of summer they take only a few days to germinate and will grow quickly. If you've never grown beans in your garden spot before, try using a garden inoculant in the soil the first time around. This will help your beans establish better by encouraging the beneficial relationship with soil bacteria that help form those Nitrogen-fixing nodules on the roots. If you planted beans in that spot before, you don't need to do this. Remember, don't over-fertilize your beans you you won't get very much fruit. Because beans fix a lot of their own Nitrogen, you don't need to add much. I should start seeing the first beans on these plants in just a couple of weeks. Mmmm, beans.

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