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Thread: Growing dwarf french beans - idiots guide wanted

  1. #1
    littlemoney is offline Seedling
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    Default Growing dwarf french beans - idiots guide wanted

    I have been thinking about growing dwarf french beans, seeing the price in supermarkets, and I was in the garden centre today and made a rash decision to buy a packet of seeds. I got the variety Safari.

    The only vegeable I grow each year is tomato and I have never grown dwarf french beans before and have an area 3' by 5' that I can use as a bed which is clay soil. Where do a start please, pots if so what size and how deep or plant in open ground. I am seeking an idiots growing guide please so I haven't wasted the £2.35 I just spent on seeds.

    I am not sure how many beans I will get from one bean and but I want to avoid them all coming at the same time. How?

    What support do they need? Also how long will it be from sowing to harvesting.

    Sorry for all the questions but I know what a helpful group you are having previously posted on the fruit forum.
    Last edited by littlemoney; 11-05-2019 at 05:00 PM.

  2. #2
    toomanytommytoes is offline Sprouter
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    I plant them to square foot gardening spacing, which is 9 per square foot or 4 inches apart each way, in the raised beds and about 1 inch deep. When you plant them densely they don't need much support, except towards the edges, and short bits of bamboo etc. will suffice. RealSeeds recommend 2 or 3 sowings at three week intervals for a continuous supply.
    Last edited by toomanytommytoes; 11-05-2019 at 08:28 PM. Reason: Spacing correction
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  3. #3
    Soupmaker is offline Germinator
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    I followed the instructions on the packet. Sowed direct in soil. Tried them last year in vegtrug. Got a lovely crop. They don't all ripen at the same time. Cooked straight from plant to plate in minutes. Delicious.
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  4. #4
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    Jay-ell is offline Welcome To The Jungle
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    Square Foot Gardening has them at 9 per square foot which is 4 inches apart in each direction.

    They should crop over a period of time, as you harvest them this will encourage new flowers and pods to develop.

    Before sowing my beans I soak them overnight so that they can swell up as I find this speeds the germination.

    You can sow them into pots on the window sill now, or wait till later on in the month when the risk of frost has passed you can sow directly into the bed.

    You can pick them at any size you prefer and they freeze well once blanched if you happen to have a glut.
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  5. #5
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    Nicos is offline 'Allo 'Allo !
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    We plant 3beans per hole. Next hole 6" away.
    Next row about a foot to the side.
    No need for support-they hold each other up
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  6. #6
    littlemoney is offline Seedling
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    Thanks for the info but can I ask:

    Quote Originally Posted by toomanytommytoes View Post
    I plant them to square foot gardening spacing, which is 9 per square foot or 3 inches apart each way, in the raised beds and about 1 inch deep. When you plant them densely they don't need much support, except towards the edges, and short bits of bamboo etc. will suffice. RealSeeds recommend 2 or 3 sowings at three week intervals for a continuous supply.
    Is it possible to square foot garden without using raised beds as my bed is just normal on the ground? I can add growmore to the soil but have no compost available

    Sounds like it might be a good idea sow a new block 3 weeks after the first to get some later beans.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay-ell View Post
    Square Foot Gardening has them at 9 per square foot which is 4 inches apart in each direction.

    They should crop over a period of time, as you harvest them this will encourage new flowers and pods to develop.

    Before sowing my beans I soak them overnight so that they can swell up as I find this speeds the germination.

    You can sow them into pots on the window sill now, or wait till later on in the month when the risk of frost has passed you can sow directly into the bed.

    You can pick them at any size you prefer and they freeze well once blanched if you happen to have a glut.
    What size pots and how deep do you plant in the pot.

    I like the idea of soaking overnight to speed up germination.

  7. #7
    littlemoney is offline Seedling
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicos View Post
    We plant 3beans per hole. Next hole 6" away.
    Next row about a foot to the side.
    No need for support-they hold each other up
    What do you do if all three germinate or are they OK that close together?

  8. #8
    Jay-ell's Avatar
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    You can use the square foot gardening spacings anywhere, it doesn't have to be a raised bed - but it helps to add a bit of compost to the bed.

    I usually use root trainers for beans but you only need a pot big enough for them to grow till you plant them out - eg at this time plastic cup, yoghurt pot. They will be hardened off and planted up in a few weeks anyway.
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