Monday, November 17, 2008

Borlotti and runner beans

Sowed loads of borlotti beans this year - and was hoping for a dried bean harvest. We ate some like french beans, and they were fine. Nothing special. Had some more as fresh beans, and similarly - no big deal.

So I was waiting for the pods to fill up, and dry on the vine, but didn't want to leave it so long that the beans rotted. So we harvested them all at the weekend. After all that we got a litte over a cupful of beans - and quite a few are at the green stage, rather than the mottled brown stage. Since we woudl regularly use a 500g bag of beans from the Italian market, the return form the planting seems a bit puny. So if I want to grow beans for the winter, looks like I woudl need to plant a lot more.

A lot of the pods had not filled out at all - and I'm pretty sure that I had them in the ground as early as possible. So maybe this bean needs a lot of heat and sunshine - both of which were missing in Summer 2008. PErhaps a better summer might show a better yield.

A few of the runner beans were left on the vine also - we podded these - the most glorious pinky purple and black beans. We will save these for planting next year, but they might be a better bet for overwintering dried beans than the borlotti. And I can paint them!


At 6:02 p.m., Blogger mel said...

Hi, I also grew borlotti this year and had a rather small crop. I'm fairly sure that the lack of bees and other pollinators was the problem. I'm hoping for better luck next time,


At 12:50 p.m., Blogger Anna Bee said...

Thanks Mel - me too!


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