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French beans

I am growing french beans for the 1st time this year(blue lake) but I am unsure  what size they should be before I pick them, at the moment some are about 5-6 inches and I can feel the beans inside the pod.

Hope someone can help.Thanks


  • sotongeoffsotongeoff Posts: 9,802

    I have the same variety and can just feel the seeds forming-yours are ready for picking

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,267

    Hi, grannyk.

    I'm growing french beans for the first time. Grew runner beans last year, which grew to long and were stringy when cooked - not at all nice to eat.

    French beans picked at 5-6 inches are delish. I opted for different coloured podded varieties and if 5-6 inches is  the size to pick them, some of the different coloured podded varieties don't fully change colour until they are about 5-6 inches long, another way of telling when they are ready to be picked and worth a thought for next year.      

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,826

    Grannyk - yours sound as if you should be enjoying your french beans right now.  As soon as they get to that size pick them or production will slow down.

    Zoomer - if your runners grew too long and stringy it's because you didn't pick them when they were ready image


    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,267

    Dovefromabove image I know that now imagegrew them in a difficult spot to pick part of the garden last year and the colour didn't help. Got new glasses now and growing multi coloured pods helps, you can't miss yellow, purple and red,  I'm out every other day, picking french beans this yearimage

    I've painted lady runner beans too growing over an arch so the pods hang down over head and can't be missed.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 83,826

    New glasses definitely help, image.  Don't forget to root around inside the foliage too - there'll be some in there trying to hide from you.

    We've got a fabuous crop this year - I'm freezing some most days, as well as eating them with virtually every meal.  I'm growing Wisley Magic for the first time and I'm very impressed - a huge crop of show quality and very tasty beans.image

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • grannykgrannyk Posts: 14

    Thanks to all who replied, we will have some with our meal tonight. I will try different varieties next year, lots of sunshine today at last my toms are going red.image

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