Growing Runner Beans

Growing Runner BeansThe British love to grow runner beans. Most vegetable patches and allotments will have at least one bamboo wigwam covered in beautiful red runner bean flowers.  They are incredibly prolific producing masses of long beans throughout the summer. Pick your runner beans when they are still small, tender and stringless (not big, tough and stringy like those in the shops). Sliced runner beans are absolutely delicious lightly boiled.  And if you don’t have a large veg patch, they are pretty enough to have in your flower garden.

How to Grow Runner Beans – QUICKSTART GUIDE
  • Vegetable Growing Calendar - Runner BeansSow indoors late April to May, outdoors May to June
  • Provide support, either as a wigwam or as a double row of canes tied together at the top
  • Sow 2 to 3 seeds at the base of each cane
  • Entwine the young plants around the supports
  • Pinch out the growing tip when the plant reaches the top of the support
  • Planting runner bean seedsReady for picking about 3 months after planting
  • Pick pods when they are 15 to 20cm (6 to 8in) long.  Pick regularly to encourage further cropping


Runner Bean Varieties

Runner Bean SeedsEnorma – excellent yields, long slender pods, very good flavour, RHS Award of Garden Merit. We’ve probably had more success with this variety than any other.
Lady Di – long, slim, stringless pods, very good flavour, RHS Award of Garden Merit
Polestar – British bred, stringless fleshy pods, very good flavour, early crop, RHS Award of Garden Merit
Moonlight – white flowering, self-setting, fleshy stringless pods, early and continual cropping even in poor weather
Desiree – white flowering, excellent flavour, long fleshy stringless pods, good in dry conditions

Growing Runner Beans

1. Growing Runner Beans – QUICKSTART GUIDE to growing runner beans
2. Planting Runner Beans – How and when to plant runner beans
3. Harvesting and Freezing Runner Beans – How to harvest and freeze runner beans
4. Runner Bean Growing Tips – Some tips to help you grow delicious runner beans
5. Runner Bean Problems, Pests and Diseases – Help is at hand if your runner bean problems are running away with you
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