Gardening

How to plant pod beans

Phaseolus vulgaris

Pod beans are common bean cultivars that have particularly tender, low-fiber pods that are eaten cooked or braised. There are tall cultivars, which climb and need staking, and low cultivars, which have a clump shape and do not necessarily need supports.

Climate

Pod beans can be grown in regions with temperatures between 16 ° C and 30 ° C throughout the plant’s growing cycle, with temperatures between 20 ° C and 25 ° C being ideal.

Brightness

Pod beans require high light, with direct sunlight for at least a few hours a day.

Ground

Cultivate in well-drained, fertile soil and rich in organic matter. The plant forms a symbiotic association with bacteria known as rhizobia or rhizobium, capable of fixing nitrogen in the air in the soil like ammonia, providing the nitrogen needed by the plant and further enriching the soil with this element.

Irrigation

Irrigate in order to keep the soil always moist, without being soaked.

Planting

Sow the seeds directly in the final location of the garden, at a depth of 2 cm to 4 cm. Optionally, bean seeds can be germinated in advance, leaving the seeds in a tray lined with paper, cotton or fabric, which must be kept moist until the root appears in each of the seeds. The germinated seeds are then carefully planted in the soil.

Pod beans can also be easily grown in pots and planters, as long as they are sized to the size of the cultivar to be planted.

Cultivation

There are tall and small pod cultivars. Tall cultivars are climbers and require support at least 2 m high, such as bamboo poles, stakes, fences and trellises. Low-sized cultivars do not require staking, yet some horticulturists place thin branches and small, well-forked dry branches to support the plants, so that beans do not topple under the weight of the pods, in an attempt to prevent these are in contact with the ground.

Remove invasive plants that are competing for nutrients and resources.

Harvest

The harvesting of the pods starts 50 to 90 days after sowing, varying according to the cultivar planted and the cultivation conditions. The pods are harvested when well developed, showing themselves tender and firm, but with seeds still immature. The pods become fibrous when the seeds (the beans) finish developing.

Raw beans and pods should not be eaten, as they contain phytohemagglutinin, a toxic lectin. Phytohemagglutinin is destroyed by cooking or frying.

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