beans, peas, and pods

So I started out growing my own italian pole beans from extremely expensive, organic heirloom seeds purchased at Whole Foods. I planted 6 of them, 3 sprouted, only one survived. Now that ones looking a little sad.

All-please post your experiences with growing your own legumes. Any tips on how to care for these heart-healthy hooligans?



5 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Shira said,

    Here’s the thing with seeds – very often they have a low germination rate, b/c of the conditions they have been in before they reached your home. If they’ve been in a hot truck, sitting in boxes for months, well they just aren’t that fresh anymore (even if the exp. date is still good). It’s also good to overseed, if you wanted 6 plants, plant 15-20 seeds and then thin out the weakest looking. It’s laborious, but you will definitely have greater success.

    Did you buy “Seeds of Change” seeds? They are generally a very reliable company, as is “Johnny’s”. I generally order my seeds direct (plant dork that i am) and store them in my refrigerator until it’s time to plant them.

    P.S. Yes I was there on Saturday, what were you working on – so I can match the blog with the face!

  2. 2

    LindsayG said,

    Yes I do believe they were “seeds of change”. Good to know, I will follow your advice next time. All of my seeds did sprout but slowly began to die even after they grew 2-3 inches. I think it was probably because I planted them in soil inside a container with no drainage possibly? I didnt anticipate the weather staying so cold for so long, otherwise i would have taken more care prior to planting them in the ground.

    I was working on my lettuce and beets on Saturday-the only 2 things I have in the ground. My plot, I cant remember the section but its “A5”. Its the row closest to the road, right by the picnic table. There were 2 other women gardening closeby, one I believe was named Jen and the other was Sharon. I asked a volunteer about the use of citrus-based insect repellents-was that you? If yes, I know exactly who you are! 🙂

  3. 3

    Shira said,

    Sorry, I assumed you started your seeds outside. It sounds like your seeds suffered from damping off, which is a fungus. It is so common when starting seeds indoors, and the lack of drainage definitely didn’t help. That would explain why they grew a few inches then croaked.

    Yes that was me you asked about the repellants.

    Congratulations, by the way on starting this blog. We think that it is a great idea. You should post something at the kiosk at the farm so people know that you are out there!

  4. 4

    Shira said,

    oops, I should have also told you that for seed starting indoors, you should use a soiless sterile mix, not regular potting soil. It’s usually sold as seed starting mix, or something like that. I’m not sure if Reynolds carries it (i would think so, but i’m not sure) The Gardeners Center in Darien on the post rd. definitely does.

  5. 5

    LindsayG said,

    Hi Shira! Glad I have a face with a name now.

    I used peat pellets to start the seeds. What do you think of those? They were dry pellets in a tray, you add water until the expand. Then you plant the seeds and they sprout in there, and theres a cover to keep the moisture in. The problems arose (with ALL of the things I planted, not just the beans) when I repotted them into regular potting mix. I got a giant container (1X3 feet and over a foot deep) and transplanted them in there and slowly everything started to die. I was thinking perhaps there wasnt good enough drainage or they caught some disease. I saw some gunk in the soil after a few weeks that looked like mold. Maybe it was the fungus you were talking was white and fuzzy on the surface of the soil.
    I also didnt anticipate having the plants inside for this long..I figured theyd be in the container for 2-3 weeks max before it would be warm enough to plant them outside. A few of the yellow squash and cukes look like they might survive but if theyre contaminated with fungus I dont want to plant them in the garden.
    Im glad you like the blog and think its a good idea. I actually didnt expect anyone to find it so quickly-I was going to wait until I had some more content before telling other gardeners to check it out..but I think we have enough now to get the ball rolling! if you would help spread the word that would be great and much appreciated. Youve helped me already! 🙂

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