Growing Green Beans

Carol Ann Fuller's family has developed ways of processing and growing green beans that have them steeped in the vegetable throughout the entire year.

| March/April 1978

  • Driving in a Steel Fencepost
    Drive in a steel fencepost for your green beans to climb up.
  • Girl Growing Green Beans
    Growing green beans is easy and rewarding with little work to be done on your part.
  • Blanched Green Beans
    Package and freeze your blanched green beans to enjoy a tasty vegetable during winter.
  • Cooling Green Beans
    Give your green beans a quick ice bath after blanching them for three minutes.

  • Driving in a Steel Fencepost
  • Girl Growing Green Beans
  • Blanched Green Beans
  • Cooling Green Beans

The green bean section of our northern Utah garden is always one of the most prolific parts of the produce patch. And the bushels of beans we pick each season are definitely at the top of my family's list of year-round favorite vegetables.

That's probably because we've developed our very own "down-home" methods of processing and growing green beans. Methods which yield a vegetable only remotely resembling the limp, tasteless, flat, canned green beans that most folks now pick from the supermarket shelves.

Growing Green Beans Starts With the Right Variety ... And Cow Manure

We've found that growing pole beans (stringless pole beans) are a far better choice than bush beans for the home garden. The pole beans — which grow up, rather than out — take up less space. And if you keep them picked back, they'll bear for a much longer period.

Here in northern Utah, we have good luck with Blue Lake Poles (available from Burpee, Henry Field, J.W. Jung, L.L. Olds, and George W. Park seed companies). Check with other vegetable raisers or a reputable garden center in your area for the names of stringless pole beans that grow best where you live.

Perhaps a commercial fertilizer would achieve the same result. But we don't know because we have cows, and we've never had to buy our vegetables' plant food from a store. We just spread a moderate amount of barnyard droppings across the garden and plow and harrow it in with the tractor during the fall or very early spring. (If you don't have real farm equipment to use, you can do the same job with a heavy-duty rototiller ... or a shovel.) It's then fairly easy to rake and re-rake the fertilized and worked soil Into an "onion bed" when planting time rolls around.

And we do plant early ... while the ground is still moist and soft. The beans don't require anything fancy either: We just scratch out a shallow trench — perhaps a couple of inches deep — with the point of the hoe. Then we drop in a thick row of beans, cover the seeds and tamp the soil lightly.

Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019


Next: April, 27-28 2019
Asheville, NC

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters