What is happening!  I have plenty of flowers on my runner beans ( scarlet emperor & polestar), & plenty of bees buzzing around them but they are not going inside the flower.  Instead they seem quite happy, getting their fix, by climbing to the other end of the flower where it's attached to the stalk.  Consequently, I am not getting many beans & the flowers are falling off.

Is there anything I can do to save the rest of my crop???????


  • waterbuttswaterbutts Posts: 1,221

    True, true the little blighters are canny aren't they? Why huff and puff,squeezing yourself down a tight tube to get to your dinner when you can just get the can opener out and help yourself to it that way?

    I too am suffering from this - some bees are quite skilled at it. If they do it then they don't pollinate the flower by putting pollen on the anthers. I have been batting them away for days now but they just tell their friends and family to reinforce their numbers.

    Nothing for it but to pollinate the flowers by hand, I'm afraid.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet Posts: 24,060

    'm not a veg grower but my grandad used to spray with water to pollinate. Might have been an old grandad's tale but he always had plenty of beans

  • waterbuttswaterbutts Posts: 1,221

    No lack of water, nutcutlet.

    Bumblebees use the hard casing that normally protects their soft tongues to puncture a hole in the nectar chamber of the flower. They then suck up the nectar, bypassing the plant's reproductive organs and, in so doing, the flower is made unattractive to any other bees that come along and so it never gets pollinated.

    My runner beans are awash with flowers and bees but I only have a handful of beans each day.

    I have been watching the bees today and issuing oaths from behind the bean poles. I only hope that my neighbour,as he was doing his weeding, didn't think "B****r off you little ***!" was directed at him.image

  • FrostyFrosty Posts: 6

    Doesn't sound like we are going to be picking many beans this year - it's odd that ALL

    the bees are doing this, don't you think??

    Thanks Nutcutlet & Waterbutts, will try spray misting & self pollination.  

  • GillyLGillyL Posts: 1,077

    No problem with bees here,massive crop of Scarlet Emperor runner beans.In fact I would say more bees than usual going into the flowers and pollinating .image

  • waterbuttswaterbutts Posts: 1,221

    No need to rub our noses in our misery, Gilly L!

  • Yeah don't want to either but my daughters runner is heaving with beans..... Sorry!!

  • so, I have the same issue, might sound obvious but how do you self pollinate runner beans?


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