Friday, September 7, 2012

Beans, Beans and More Beans

First of all, I have to say: is it REALLY September already??? Not only September, but almost a full week into it! The older I get the faster the seasons fly, to the point where it is hard to keep up mentally. Where, oh where did the summer go? Oh, we still have the warm weather, but the days are noticeably getting shorter and the fall activities are gearing up. For me that means the start of the season for choir at my church, with the weekly practices and the beginning of weekly youth group meetings. I am the director of our children's group, so it's back to "work" for me!
While the garden is something of a mess, it's still producing quite a bit, due to the warmth and the frequent rain we've been having. I'm very sorry I didn't get much of a fall garden in this year.


What I am getting a ton of is beans. My Fortex pole beans have been producing slowly, but are finally kicking in somewhat. I have found in general that although I like pole beans, they seem to take a long time before they start producing for me and then I have too short a season. So despite the back-breaking work of bending down to harvest them, I count on bush beans. I planted two varieties; Fresh Pick and Provider, both of which are great producers.
Above is a photo of my Fortex beans. All the beans in these photos are a bit larger than I normally pick them. I hadn't been in the garden for a few days due to rain and busy days, and frankly, I thought that both the Fortex and my first bean patch had played out. Boy was I wrong! I ended up with over two pounds of green beans.
I have mentioned before in an earlier post that what I love about Fresh Pick is how productive they are and how they produce two harvests. I had thought Bean Patch #1 was finished, but it still isn't quite. In the top photo you can see Bean Patch #2
which is about to produce its second harvest. There are tons of blossoms and baby beans in there. I plant my beans in a tight block, intensively, as opposed to long rows. The exception to this is Bean Patch #3 which is a long wide row planted where earlier in the season I had potatoes. Patch #3 is blossoming and ready to give me a first harvest in the coming week. Whether I end up with a second harvest is entirely dependent on how early our first frost is.
I already have frozen more than enough green beans to meet our needs for the year. So, many of the beans I'm getting now are being given away to friends and family and we are eating them fresh. What I love most about green beans is that I have never had a bad year with them. They are a very gratifying vegetable to grow, simple and basic as they are. I've been intrigued by seeing those Chinese Noodle beans people have been growing, as well as yellow wax beans and dried beans. I'd like to expand my bean horizens next summer and would welcome any beany suggestions you all might have!

8 comments:

  1. I love green beans and if anything I will plant a lot more next spring because the ones I planted this spring are slowing down. They're still producing enough to eat but not enough to store, and my fall plantings were eaten by bunny :(

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  2. Bad bunny! Sorry you aren't getting a fall batch. Last fall my late green bean plants got devoured by voles. They are still haunting my garden but haven't been as destructive this year.

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  3. That sure is a lot of beans. I am hoping for a late first frost as my Chinese long beans are blossoming again.
    I think you will enjoy growing the long beans, they are very pretty on the trellis and very productive.

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    1. They look amazing Norma and I am really looking forward to trying them next year.

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  4. You are getting some very nice looking beans! Glad they are doing so well for you! Nancy

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    1. Thanks Nancy! I love that they are dependable.

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  5. I'm really missing having beans at the moment - so much so that I sowed some today, about a month early but I thought it ws worth risking a few seed to get some early crops. They are lovely and easy to grow aren't they?

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    1. Good luck with the earlies Liz! My early sown did not make it; not sure why, but all the later sowings made up for it.

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