Blue Lake (Pole Bean)
Latin Name: Phaseolus vulgaris
Item #: 9
Suitable for Canning:
BEANS - POLE
One of the nice things about pole beans is that you can grow a lot of beans in very little space. Pole beans live up to their name. They will only grow vertically up poles or trellises. If you try to support them horizontally or leave them unstaked, they will wind around each other and choke each other out. They seem to grow faster up vertical strings than poles. Keep the poles to a reasonable height (6 ft/2 m) and place them where they will not cast a shadow on the rest of the garden. Two ounces of seed planted in 50 ft/15 m of 36 in/91 cm spaced hills will produce about 25 lbs/11 kg of beans.
SOWING: 2 oz/57 g sows 25 hills at 5-6 beans per hill; 0.5 lb/227 g will plant 100 hills. Use rough poles or a trellis 6 ft/2 m high. Sow 5 or 6 beans, 1 in/25 mm deep around each then thin to the 3 strongest plants. If you are using a fence for support, thin vines 6-8 in/15-20 cm apart. Pole snap beans should be planted in a sunny, well drained location at the north end of the garden so that the long shadows that they cast will not shade neighboring dwarf plants.
FERTILIZATION: Apply fertilizer carefully, so that the granules do not tough the seed. High applications of potassium will burn seed quickly. Wait until plants become established before your first application, then give them a second feeding just as the pods begin to form.
CULTIVATION: Do not cultivate or hoe just after a heavy rain or early in the morning when plants are wet. This will cause and spread various diseases.
HARVEST: Every 7 days for young tender pods. You should get 4-6 good pickings. Over-mature pods are poor eating and weaken plants.