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Should I "top" my sparsely-flowering runner beans?

BerkleyBerkley Posts: 428

I know the usual advice is to nip out runner beans when they reach the top of their support. Well, mine have - but the constant rain means they have grown at an alarming rate - but there are very few flowers. I'm tempted to let them just "hang down" in the hope that sunshine will eventually come and more flowers be produced. What do other people think I should do? (They're growing up a wigwam in a large barrel).


  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,802

    Pinch them out-that means side shoots are produced and thus more flowers -your way you are just leaving one shoot-I don't think you will get so many flowers-I have pinched mine out they still seem to put on another 6 or so inches in height.

    Alternatively pinch out alternate ones -see what happens?

  • BerkleyBerkley Posts: 428

    Thanks for the advice. I'm going to pinch out "nearly all" to see what happens....

  • BookertooBookertoo Posts: 1,306

    If you can reach them without risking drowning in the process, pinch them out - mine are at the top of their poles too, but are otherwise vry spindly anaemic looking things - guess too much wet and all the nutrients washed out of the compost - I'd add feed but that will just get washed out too.  If the weather people give us  a suggestion of more than 20 minutes without rain I might try feeding them tomorrow afternoon - we will see. 

  • Mine are not bad but all the flowers seem to be at the top with nothing further down

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 81,358

    The soil in my new veg patch was a bit poor as it has been supporting a large ash tree, so earlier this year I dug plenty of organic farmyard manure into it - it's also had chicken manure pellets and some dried seaweed fertiliser - our runner beans are looking very healthy, covered with flowers and lots of beans formng.  And yes, when your beans get to the top of their support pinch the growing tips out; that way they'll make lots of side shoots and produce more flowers. 


    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

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