Green, Snap, Wax or String Bean

By The Old House Web

Green, Snap, Wax or String Bean

This section includes the cultural information for many types of beans. They require full sun and any soil with a pH greater than 5. Beans may be planted from late May to the end of June if the soil temperature is at least 60 degrees. If the soil is cooler the seed may rot. Several short rows of beans, planted at 10 day intervals provide a succession of harvest. Pole type varieties have a longer bearing season. Plant the seed 1 inch deep in heavy soil and 2 inches deep in lighter soils. Bush varieties are spaced 3 to 4 inches apart in rows 2 feet apart. Pole varieties are planted with 2 to 3 seeds at the base of each pole with 3 feet between poles. Pole types grown on a trellis, fence, or wall, are planted 6 inches apart. Pole types may also be grown on a teepee of poles. If the garden was not fertilized, use 1 cup of 5-10-10 per 50 feet of row 2 weeks before planting. Give the same amount of fertilizer as a sidedress later, if the plants become yellow and stop growing. Failure to water adequately when pods are forming causes deformed pods.

Harvest green, wax and snap beans before the beans cause the pods to bulge. The beans are most tender at that stage, but may be harvested at any stage desired. Dry beans are harvested when the pods have matured and yellowed but have not broken open. To harvest beans to use dry, pick the pods and spread them in a warm place to dry. The vines may be pulled and allowed to dry when the majority of the beans are mature.

Harvesting Dry Beans

Dry beans, like kidney beans, navy pea beans, garbanzo beans (chickpeas), black-eye peas etc., should be harvested when the pods are dry, brittle and brown and the beans are hard and have their characteristic coloration. An easy way to tell that beans are mature enough to be picked is to wait until the pods start to shatter or split open. If the pods are leathery, the beans are not ready to harvest.

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