Saturday, May 19, 2012

Bush Bean Redland Pioneer Life Cycle

The first bush bean that we grown was 'Redland Pioneer' in our garden and has been the best performer among the bush beans we have tried (not many though still to compare with). But it has been the most reliable bean to fill in the hungry gap. Bush bean grows really fast and provide some beans in 7~8weeks of growing, sometime earlier if the weather is preferable for their optimum growth. It is really an important veggie in our garden since it fill the hungry gap in spring and again in fall. We sow 'Redland Pioneer' bush bean 3 times a year-spring, summer and autumn. Well, rather than leaving the soil bare after harvesting other veggies, we might as well grow beans so they help fix nitrogen into the soil again. Its a win-win situation. I feel that bush bean seeds does not require much water to germinate, too much water can cause the seeds to rot easily in cool season. A really good veggie for a lazy gardener like me, bush beans not a heavy drinker and not a heavy feeder.
Bush bean 'Redland Pioneer' seedlings'
Because we don't have that much space to grow and very greedy, I tried to maximize the space we have by planting the plants densely together in spring/summer. I can get away growing them densely in a spot with full sun because they don't compete each other with light and it helps keep the soil moist longer as it is covered with the foliage. Less evaporation. Save money from buying mulch. I gave up with mulching this year because the bird will cause serious damage by their scratching habit on seedlings. Last spring when we transplanted tomato at this area, we direct-sowed bush bean seeds around the tomato seedlings. It did very well and the tomatoes grow without any fuss. Humidity is very low in our garden warm season here so our tomato plants can readily accept being close to other plants and I don't have to worry about good air circulation.

Beans grow well in partial shade too. But not as prolific as in full sun which you get more beans to harvest. In partial shade, I probably plant shorter plants together with beans to give the bean plants more light and not to over-shadowed them. We had many violas flower plant volunteers one spring season, and I transplanted them as border plant just to make the garden look more colourful. If in tropics, I can imagine portulaca (moss rose) growing in the viola place instead. At the back row are Bloomsdale spinach young plants.

Bush Bean Redland Pioneer very prolific.
At their pick season, just a few plants will give you enough harvest for an average family number.
I have been growing them for 3 years but this is the first time/year I really collected their seeds. I have been trying to collect them earlier last year but its hard to get the seed pod dried properly in autumn season.  I also found sprouted bean seeds in the seed pods during autumn. So this time I let the summer heat wave do the quick drying process for me.
Shining harvested bean seeds.
After I harvested the seeds, I planted some of our home-grown seeds. I felt very satisfied with the results and the new harvest from plants grown from our home-grown seeds. Contentment.
Have a lovely weekend!


Kate said...

That's a good idea, using bush beans to shade the soil! I use them hanging over to shade the hot side of the garden beds. Everything in your garden looks healthy and beautiful.

rainfield61 said...

A lazy gardener but gets such a good harvest!!

Daphne Gould said...

I really love pole beans better, but I'm growing some bush green beans this year to fill in the early and late gap. The pole beans just don't have a long enough season.

Sue Garrett said...

We call these French beans and the taller ones runner beans. Not exactly sure why but whatever they are called they are good to eat.

cikmanggis said...

bush bean bukan pokok yang menjalar seperti Buncis? atau pun benda yang sama?Jika tak menjalar sungguh senang menjaganya kerana tak perlu para atau kayu.

Mark Willis said...

Your method is good Diana - very good use of the space. I can hardly wait to get my first beans of the year. I wish they would hurry up!

Gardener on Sherlock Street said...

I never thought about just writing the variety on the pods! Perfect.
I hope I have as much success with my beans this year.
I plant a lot of things close together too. We have so much wind air circulation is never a problem. I just have to be careful not to shade something too much.

Unknown said...

Those are great looking plants. This year even I have put beans ant tomatoes together. I am yet to see the result thought.

mat jon said...

Ni kacang buncis kan? tak perlu buat pancang ke, sebab saya tengok pokok tu jenis rimbun.

Sue Catmint said...

not a lazy gardener, a clever gardener, because then you can use your saved energy for other things! You know when you pick your veggies, you can definitely pick the viola flowers to put in salad - I am sure of this, although I'm still not sure about the salvia greggei flowers! hope you're having a good weekend, Diana, cheers from cat.

Mama Pongkey said...

Bush beans and tomatoes.. sounds like a good match to me :-) I might be able to try this soon-ish...

Liz said...

I get far better results with my Spring planted beans than any I plant any later. Just shows how much difference climate makes. I like the idea of growing them in amongst the tomatoes though I will try that this year.

kitsapFG said...

My spring planting of both bush and pole beans are currently emerging. I am very happy to see them as they are a delicious addition to our summer eating and are an important crop for us to freeze for use during the dark days of winter. I like how you maximize your growing space by planting more densely and interplanting crops. Good work!

cookingvarieties said...

hi diana, didnt know that bush beans can planted very closely together. oooooooooooooo yummy looking veggies.

now i am very sure that this faint bell sound comes from your garden- hope that will chase the garden thief. have a nice day

lena said...

i think you are a smart gardener, making full use of every space in your garden and considering its height and sunlight! have a good week!

Kelli said...

I enjoyed your post as I'm growing climbing beans 'cobra' for the first time this year and all bean tips are helpful!

petite nyonya said... many beans! is it same as french beans or dwarf beans? i planted some dwarf beans recently and sadly...tak jadi langsung! i need to try again. do you use fertiliser or just soil/compost for growing these beans?

baguznet said...

it's nice and great idea. I think I should try to plant some beans after harvesting veggie. Thanks for the idea ;)

shaz said...

Love the shot of your saved seeds :) I'm going to attempt growing some beans in a pot. Not sure if I can find a good variety for the tropics but will try. Sowed some basil and my goodness they sprout fast in the heat and humidity!

Wendy said...

fun! I would like to save more of my own seeds this year. Doens't it feel so rewarding?

Malar said...

This is really reliable plant! Can this kind of beans grow in Malaysia?

Jennifer said...

One of my raised vegetable beds is in part shade. Perhaps bush beans might be a nice choice for this bed. It is impressive that you have beans after 7 or 8 weeks.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Kate~I found mulch is getting more expensive and birds that stay in our garden like to rake them. So I think using foliage to cover the soil will be one of the solution to keep the soil moist and cooler longer from the heat.

Rainfield61~ The correct timing and season for sowing seeds does play a role to make the garden easier to maintain.

Daphne~Yeah the pole bean does take longer to produce although they have longer harvest season. I like snake bean but it require such a long time to wait for them to produce. Alternatively, we have to depend on the bush bean to fill in the gap too.

Sue~Its interesting to know how different the term bush bean-french bean and climbing bean-runner bean terms are use in different region.

Cikmanggis~Bush bean dalam keluarga kacang buncis juga, cuma yang bush bean ni untuk klasifasi kacang yang tak memanjat, cuma renek dan menyarap je kat atas tanah. Kalau yang memanjat macam kacang panjang selalunya negara barat panggil runner bean/pole bean/climbing bean.

Mark~How many type of beans you are growing this year?

Gardener on Sherlock Street~I was afraid that the dried pods will be mix up by my boys. So I wrote the name on the pod just in case.

Sri Ranjani~Hope you get a good result with tomato and bean combination.

Mat Jon~Yang ni bush bean tak payah buat penyokong sebab jenis renek tak memanjat. Ya kacang buncis.

Catmint~I hope we have more volunteer violas in the garden now that the weather is cold so I can try have viola bloom in our salad. Thanks for the idea.

Mama Pongkey~Hope you have many beans and tomatoes to enjoy ya :).

Liz~Location for the bush bean plants play a role for success in our garden each season. For spring and autumn, they need full sun. However, summer I will be growing them in partial shade (full sun won't work). Bush beans produce very fast. But with climbing bean will be a much different strategy that I have to work on.

KitsapFG~We have a lot of sun/light in summer so we can grow more densely. But winter will be much depend on the plants height I guess.

Cookingvarieties~Bush bean can be planted closely so they can support each other instead flopping towards the ground.

Lena~I once work as a planner before further my studies but I don't have much strength. I need my muscleman to support me with me garden project ideas.

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

Kelli~Good Luck with growing climbing beans 'cobra'! I have not grown this variety before. Looking forward how it goes in your garden.

Petite Nyonya~Sama macam french beans/dwarf beans. I don't use fertiliser for growing beans. Just normal soil. Beans fix their own nitrogen so they don't grow well in over-fertilise soil.If you provide rich manure/compost with nitrogen, the plant will just give you more leaves rather than beans.

Bagusnet~Beans are good crop for crop rotation. Brings back nitrogen into the soil which will help next plant to grow. Save you money from buying fertiliser.

Shaz~You can plant all year round now!Envy you :).

Wendy~It does feel very rewarding. When you get used to saving seeds, it does not actually require lots of space.

Malar~I think so, there are so many beans variety. Must be several that will do well in Malaysia.

Jennifer~Oh bush beans produce earlier than climbing bean. However, bush beans have a shorter harvest season compare to climbing bean which takes months to wait for first produce. That is why with bush bean needs succession sowing for continuous harvest.

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