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Bush beans - Do they need support?

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Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  ricksanders on 2/5/2016, 7:02 pm

Rick from Illinois here.

In preparing for my boxes and planting plans, I have decided to fill one box with Fordhook Limas.  I had originally planned on putting a "layer" of 7 inch nylon trellis material horizontally over the box at about 2 feet to provide some support for the beans.  Do bush beans really need a support?  Opinions (and experience) would be appreciated.  Seems a layer of anything would get in the way if it isn't needed.

Thx.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  AtlantaMarie on 2/5/2016, 7:58 pm

Take a look at the seed package. It should tell you how tall they'll get.

I had bush beans year before last. They only got about a foot or a foot & a half high. Didn't bother with support & they did fine. When I removed the beans & cut them back, they also started putting out a 2nd harvest...
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  CitizenKate on 2/5/2016, 11:15 pm

I've been growing the Blue Lake bush beans for the last couple of years, and they have not needed any support.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  CitizenKate on 2/5/2016, 11:17 pm

@AtlantaMarie wrote:When I removed the beans & cut them back, they also started putting out a 2nd harvest...
Oh really!  I will try that this year.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  sanderson on 2/6/2016, 1:21 am

My Dragon Tongue beans like to fall over at some point so some type of perimeter control keeps them somewhat in their space. I also cut mine back and they grew again with a nice fall crop.

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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  camprn on 2/6/2016, 7:16 am

My bush beans in the SFG do get support in the form of a string to corral them and keep them from shading out neighboring squares. I usually plant bush beans 4 squares across because I Need to contain those suckers.

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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 2/6/2016, 10:18 am

I grew bush wax beans at 9/SF and they needed no support. Amazing taste too!
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  yolos on 2/6/2016, 2:58 pm

I agree, they need some kind or corral to keep them from flopping into the aisle or into an adjacent square.  I use a couple different methods.  One method is to use these small metal fences around the outside border of the beans (the following is not beans of course - just fencing to let my grandson know that this is special grass and he can't walk on it but this is a good picture of the fences).


Here is a picture of a corral around the whole line of squares.  These were dragon tongue beans and are supposed to be bush beans.  It is my experience that if you follow the guidelines and plant 9 bush beans per square, they get very tall and try to fall over.  Now I only plant 5 per square to keep them contained, bushier and easier to find the beans.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  sanderson on 2/6/2016, 5:07 pm

Thank you for posting photos of examples.

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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  Scorpio Rising on 2/6/2016, 5:35 pm

Yes, good to see what you are using. Yolos, I kinda thought 9/SF was really thick, but it worked. The wax beans were easy to spot due to their color. I haven't grown bush beans since my original foray in the early '90s. All pole.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  sanderson on 5/13/2016, 4:46 pm

I was happy to see an existing thread on supporting bush beans.  I hate to start new threads if there is an existing one that will work.

I just installed a horizontal piece of netting at 18" height for the Dragon Tongues.  Once they get beans they sort of collapse and I thought this, plus wrapping netting around the poles (after adding 18" vertical extensions, or raising the gable roof) would help.

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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  countrynaturals on 5/13/2016, 4:50 pm

Beautiful, Sanderson! I love to see what others are doing. It doubles my gardening fun.  sunny
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  Turan on 5/13/2016, 6:03 pm

I do something similar as sanderson, just not as tidy. Embarassed 
I flop some wire fencing over the patch and make sure it rests on or is curved enough so it is about 6" above the soil.  The beans will grow through the grid and most of the beans will be held above the soil.  I find that most varieties I have tried needed that bit of support or started flopping a lot.

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Blue Lake

Post  MrBooker on 5/14/2016, 6:14 am

@CitizenKate wrote:I've been growing the Blue Lake bush beans for the last couple of years, and they have not needed any support.
Glad to know that. I have Blue lake beans planted. I've always planted Kentucky Wonder bush beans but couldn't find them anywhere this year.
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Cutting beans back.

Post  MrBooker on 5/14/2016, 6:21 am

@AtlantaMarie wrote:Take a look at the seed package.  It should tell you how tall they'll get.

I had bush beans year before last.  They only got about a foot or a foot & a half high.  Didn't bother with support & they did fine.  When I removed the beans & cut them back, they also started putting out a 2nd harvest...
I never heard of cutting beans back. How tall is the bush after you cut them back? I want try it this year.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  kristinz on 5/14/2016, 11:15 am

@AtlantaMarie wrote:Take a look at the seed package.  It should tell you how tall they'll get.

I had bush beans year before last.  They only got about a foot or a foot & a half high.  Didn't bother with support & they did fine.  When I removed the beans & cut them back, they also started putting out a 2nd harvest...

I'm going to have to try cutting them back after my first harvest, how far do you cut them back?    This will be my third year doing bush beans - I've done Blue Lake in the past but now trying 2 different ones - limas and a French string bean...will be curious to see how this works after the first harvest!

And I also have never used supports, the grow quite well for me.
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Re: Bush beans - Do they need support?

Post  landarch on 5/14/2016, 1:06 pm

I'll have to keep an eye on my Dragon Tounges this year...decided to try something different than Blue Lake Bush 274 this year.
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