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broad beans

I have never grown them, before, runners, french,dwarf yes, any recomendations for varieties please, do they need support?


  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 28,827
    When I grew them in Belgium I gave them support because our veggie plot was exosed to strong westerly winds but they don't need a frame like climbing beans.    Aquadulce is a good variety and easily available but there are others you could try.

    The main pest is blackfly but you can limit this by pinching out the juicy tops in spring and planting sacrificial nasturtiums nearby.

    Here's what the RHS says about how and what to grow -
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,740
    I sow aquadulce this month and the plants are early to crop and thereby avoid attack by blackfly. 

    They don’t need support ... sometimes a bit of windbreak netting around them is useful here in Norfolk. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,343
    Thanks folks, well, I looked up that site (thank you obelixx) it says you can grow them in Autumn, however the main growin season is March,April, BUT you can grow them in February, so pretty much anytime then, haha.  Does an autumn sowing completely stop the blackfly Dove, is that the specific "bean" blackfly and do you cover yours with fleece or anything,do You direct sow? I dont direct sow beans or peas here because of mice.That site has no more of the Aquadulce till next spring.  I planted marigolds and nasturtiums around a lot of veg this year, because the blackfly is always a huge problems on the runner beans, normally, I just hose them off, but unable to use my hands for 6 months, I didnt do that this year, kind of let them get on with it, and had great fun, trying to wash them off before eating!!
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,740
    Yes I direct sow ... we’ve never had a problem with mice. The plants will be growing well before winter and are and will happily spend time under winter snow. Sowing now means that the plants are cropping by the end of May (which is when there’s not a lot of other veg ready in the garden) and I nip the leafy tops out (and cook and eat them 😋) before the blackfly can infest them. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • @Nanaboo plenty of other places will have seeds now, I'm trying wizard field beans this year, a relative of broad beans
  • NollieNollie Posts: 6,761
    The Sutton is a lower growing one that doesn’t need support, but I found they didn’t crop as well as Aquadulce. The latter I push in canes at the corners and a couple of rows of string around to form a rough support. Picked when still young and juicy, they are delicious raw or very lightly cooked. If allowed to get too big they go a bit floury and are not as nice.
    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,343
    Our neighbours "very casually" mentioned they have mice under their patio, and in their garage!! grrrr.  I found in my greenhouse nearest their garden, peas,beans,sunflowers,sweet peas, gone, we did see the little devil at one point.  So far one greenhouse seems to have escaped their notice.  It is very "improved" on my veg plot, but the sub soil is clay, and boy have we had rain, so at this time of the year, with little sun and the wet soil, maybe I will do both, see what happens with my little green fingers.
  • @Nanny Beach we have mice in the garage, my seeds live inside in an airtight box
  • Yes sow them now for early crop, unless you have heavy clay soil that water logs as the beans dont like being waterlogged, if you have such ground wait until early next year
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,343
    bookmonster, no, they ate the sown seeds, before that they live in a wardrobe indoors, it was clay soil much improved after 8 years of living here.Have ordered winter pea and bean collection
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