How to Grow Runner Beans

How to Grow Runner Beans

Actually, runner beans are very easy to grow. Summer is incomplete without the runner beans for many people. Many people love to garden as a favorite pastime.  

Runner beans are very nutritious and healthy. Runner beans are good to eat and can be used and preserved in all the ways you can use string beans. If you wish to use runner beans as green or string beans the younger you pick them the more tender they will be.

The seeds from the older pods can be harvested and eaten or dried stored for later use. This is an opportunity most American gardeners miss, but will to the store and by Cannellini beans.  Cannellini beans, as it happens, are variety runner beans.

I once had a friend (knowing that I would not mind) who would come over and raid my runner beans when it looked like I was too busy with the day job to keep up with the harvest.  Both our families cook and use runner beans like lima (Butter Beans). 

 It does not need a proper place to grow up. It can grow among flowers and all. It can reduce the risk of heart disease. It can also prevent the chance of colon cancer. It can control diabetes. It can boost your immunity. For the good eye health, runner beans are very good. It can also help you to improve the bone health of your body. This vegetable helps you to keep your stomach working properly.

Runner beans can grow in a container. The container can dry out easily. So, you need to water them frequently. According to the size of the container, a very small amount of runner beans can grow in a single container. Pots can also restrict the growth of the plant.

Direct Sowing:

  • Direct sowing is an easy process. It can be done at any time of the whole year. This process means to plant the seeds directly into the soil of the garden. There are actually three main parts of direct sowing such as preparation, sowing the seeds and taking care of it.

Soil Preparation:

  • It is important to set the bed for the seed. It should be done before a couple of weeks of sowing.
  • Amend the soil means to add valuable and vital nutrients to the soil. The soil analysis is very much needed in this stage.
  • After the amending part, you will have to wait for a few days for the weeds to sprout and after that remove them with the use of a small hoe.
  • Then layout your bed.

Sowing the seeds:

  • Before doing the direct sowing, you will have to decide how the vegetables will grow and use for. You should have to give water to the soil before the day of planting. After the sowing procedure, you will have to provide the seeds with enough water to drink. Seeds basically need three valuable things to germinate such as moisture, light, and temperature.

Care:

  • Caring for runner beans after sowing consists of weeding the bed, re-sowing and weather protection for the crops and plants.

Growing seedlings:

  • Seedlings need more micro-climate to grow than older plants. If you are planning to grow seedlings of runner beans, then you will have to take some special care.

Transplanting seedling:

  • To transplant seedlings, you will have to fill each new container with the moist planting mix. You will have to loosen the soil around the seedlings by using a kitchen fork. You will have to take special care of handling the seedlings by their leaves to avoid the damage.

Succession Planting:

  • Succession planting is a very efficient way to grow runner beans and other vegetables. The methods of succession planting increase the availability of crops.
  • Insect and Pest Control: For any kinds of sowing, it is essential to do insect and pest control. By controlling the pest, you can ensure the growth of the crops. You can use many DIY methods to control the pest and insects. You can also hire pest control to remove and kill them.
  • Controlling Diseases and Problems: By using proper medicines, you can control diseases and other problems related to this. Fungi used to take their energy from the growing plant. These fungi are mainly responsible for the damage of the crops and plants. You will have to identify the problem that causes hamper to your plant and solve it accordingly.

When are bush beans ready to harvest ripe?

  • Generally, bush beans should be ready in 50-55 days. The maturity time depends on the variety of its growing.
  • Green beans: Green beans are tender and tasty. Your plants provide a continual production all the seasons.
  • Dry beans:
  • These beans are ready for harvest in 70-120 days. Dry beans are actually growing to full maturity.

Harvesting:

  • Weeding, watering, and mulching are essential until the runner beans are harvested. You will have to apply an occasional liquid to fertilizer feed them. This procedure will begin in the mid-summer and continue to the first frosts. Runner beans actually crop just after the French beans. It is a very productive, beautiful and delicious vegetable to grow. You will have to pick the beans regularly to encourage future production.

Storing Runner Beans:

  • Runner beans are actually prolific. You can store it for a long time depending on the method used.
    • Blanching, then freezing the runner beans as green beans is an easy option. Once frozen runner beans can be safely stored up to nine months in an ordinary freezer, and fourteen months in a deep freeze in a vacuum-packed bag. 
    • You can keep fresh runner beans in the salad drawer of the refrigerator for 4 to 5 days. You will have to use the oldest beans at first.
    • It takes a week actually to dry runner bean seeds at home, but once dry and stored the dry beans in an airtight container in a cool, dry spot, runner beans can be safely kept for up to five years, then cook much like dry lima beans.
    • Young Runner beans can also be dried as leather breeches beans (dry green beans) a heritage method, which is nearly forgotten, then rehydrated and eaten for up to two years.

Related references

Legumes – Beans as protein

Beans are a good source of protein, especially, when combined with other foods.  Furthermore, beans are readily available commercially and can also be grown in the garden in most areas of the world with a modicum of care.

As A Protein Source

Beans can be worked into most dietary patterns.  This is especially true of a person wanted to go on reduced meat or vegetarian diet pattern.  For those who follow the Paley of diet, try Tepary beans, they are wild native form of beans.  Tepary beans are commercially available and will be one of the non-domesticated forms of beans.

Style of bean

Beans can be eaten in many forms, which can include

  • As Pulses (dried beans) – which can be cooked from a grounded the flour, and canned
  • As Vegetable (green bean, salad garnish); including been britches
  • As Greens – eaten raw or cooked with other vegetables

 Versatility

Beans can be incorporated into your meals in many ways, some always are shown below:

  • As Kettle beans; for example, ham hock beans
  • In chowders, soups, stews, and chilies
  • In salads as greens, green beans, fresh bean seeds, or as cooked beans
  • As a side dish; for example, refried beans
  • Deep fried for example, breaded and fried as finger food
  • In cakes and bread as an amendment; by adding cooked bean paste or bean flour to increase protein levels

Long-term Food Storage

Bean store well and depending on the storage method can be stored for years.  Among the storage methods possible are:

As dried beans

  • If properly stored, dried beans are a long storing method, which can be stored for up to five years or more
  • Bean Britches, which are a dried form of green beans, may also be stored for a couple years

As canned beans

Hold canning beans can be stored for two to three years, as well, and maybes canned in a number of ways, including canned:

  • As part of another dish; for example, white bean chowder, stews, and/or relishes
  • As bean dishes; for example, Boston baked beans pork and beans, refried beans, or simply as precooked canned beans (season are otherwise)
  • As canned or pickled green beans

As frozen beans

In much the same way as canned beans, beans can be cooked and frozen or frozen as fresh vegetables for a few months.  Among the ways you can accomplish this are:

  • As part of another dish; for example, white bean chowder or soups
  • As bean dishes; for example, Boston baked beans pork and beans, refried beans, or simply as pre-cooked canned beans (season are otherwise)
  • Has frozen green beans or fresh bean seeds

Related References

What Beans to Save as Seed?

When planning your garden, and planning to save your own seed, crossbreeding is always a concern.  All beans will cross, even between bush and pole varieties within their respective subgroups (e.g. common, Lima, Runner, Fava).  Planting more than one variety of the same subgroup is not recommended.  Beans do not generally cross the subgroup boundaries, so, planting a variety of beans from different subgroups in close proximity is not a problem.

Seed savers should plant an additional ten feet or more of dry bean row and then select the best non-hybrid dry bean as seeds for next years’ garden and a few extra as reserve seed in case of crop failure.  As a general rule bean seed, should be chosen for:

  • Seed quality: seed should be mature, air dried, and not be moldy or have started to sprout
  • Size: the larger seed is generally considered to have been an indication of healthy growth.
  • Shape: choose seed that has a shape consistent with the norm for the variety of bean.
  • Color and Pattern: seed that has the color and pattern consistent with the norm for the variety of bean.

How many beans to grow in the Garden?

With the gardening season nearing, it’s time to consider what to plant and how much to plant. When considering how many beans to plant, follow these general rules.

As a rule, when planning for how many beans to plant in a season, you will need:

  • fifty feet of row per person for bush beans, or
  • thirty-five feet of row per person of pole beans.

Many gardeners make a distinction for planting amounts between varieties (e.g. common Vs. lima) or usage (snap Vs. dry), but this is not necessary, the rules hold up.

If you plan to dual-purpose your beans, to use and consume them both as snap and dry beans, then double your row footage per a person.  Additionally, mark which rows will be used as snap or dry beans is recommended to ensure the best possible quality and sufficient quantity for each use.  Keep in mind that snap beans are harvested while young tender and dry beans need time to mature and dry on the vine.

Seed savers should plant an additional ten feet of dry bean row and then select the best dry bean as seeds for next year’s garden and a few extra as reserve seed in case of crop failure.

Related References

What are Lima Beans?

Lima Beans (Phaseolus lunatus)

Originally thought to originate from Brazil, a wild, primitive form of lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus) (also, known as butter beans) has been recently discovered in Guatemala, leading scientists to believe that the bean’s origins may actually lie there. The name “lima bean” originated from the discovery of the bean by European explorers in Lima, Peru. Its development includes three main courses of travel:

  • First, through Mexico into our Southwest, then over to Florida and up toward Virginia.
  • Second, down through Central America into Peru (this is where larger pods developed rather than typical lima beans of North America).
  • Ans, finally, eastward through the West Indies and Southward toward South America.

Lima beans are one of those foods I have always eaten but did not really appreciate, until, I started living in Texas where these heat-loving drought-tolerant beans thrived.  This hearty bean, despite their reputation, can be very flavorful and bountiful.

Mennonite Dry Pole Bean

Originally acquired from Sauk River Seed, this is an heirloom bean, which I have been maintaining for some years now.  The Mennonite pole bean has proven to be one of my heartiest of the common pole beans.  Even under drought conditions, this bean has proven to produce more and be healthier than any other common pole bean in my inventory, if given a minimum of water and care.  Under ideal conditions, this is an outstanding producer.  Best used as a dry, or shell bean, The Mennonite bean has an excellent nutty taste, makes excellent eating, and is an excellent substitute for pinto beans.

Except for larger size, very like the Czechoslovakian “Honey” pole bean and another bean known in Minnesota as the “Swedish”, but outperforms both.  The young pods can be canned fresh, in the upper Midwest Mennonites, traditionally, allow them to dry on the vine until frost, then store them for winter cooking.

This bean is sturdy and disease-resistant, requiring a strong trellis or fence.  Continues to produce until the first frost.

Year Introduced: 1864

Status: Heirloom

Size: Very large; up to ½ inch.

Color: Light coffee or dark tan

Type: Dry/Shell

Good as Green Beans: Not Really

Sun: plant in full sun

Soil Type:  most soils are fine

Emerges: 7-10 days

Edible: in 69 days

Habit: Pole

Seed Shape: A compact almost rectangular

Pod Length:  9 inches

Vine Height:  six to ten feet

Maturity: 90 days

Genealogy: Phaseolus vulgaris

Plant

Sow directly in warm soil, sets of three, about 1 ½ inches deep, 4 inches apart, and with a row spacing of about 4 feet between rows.

Care

When plants reach 6 inches in height, side-dress them compost, manure or slow-release fertilizer.  Give plenty of water throughout the active growing season.  For Dry beans, reduce watering during the last month.

Harvest

As green Beans

Pick as pods reach mature length, but before large seed form, then de-string, and cook. They may, also, be blanched and frozen or canned promptly.

As Dry Beans

Before the first frost cop vines free from the soil to stop growth.  Allow pods to dry thoroughly.  If a hard frost threatens, bring pods indoors, in a warm dry place, to finish drying.  In long growing season areas, harvest dry pods, as they become available, shell, and store in a breathable container in a cool dry place, protected from direct sunlight.