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Growing Beans - broad beans, fava beans, also Fava bean

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
      P P     P P      

(Best months for growing Beans - broad beans, fava beans in New Zealand - cool/mountain regions)

P = Sow seed

  • Easy to grow. Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 43°F and 75°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 6 - 10 inches apart
  • Harvest in 12-22 weeks. Pick frequently to encourage more pods.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Dill, Potatoes
  • Broad bean flowering
    Broad bean flowering
  • Egyptian broad beans
    Egyptian broad beans
  • Young beans on plant
    Young beans on plant
  • Young broad bean plant
    Young broad bean plant

It is a rigid, erect plant 0.5-1.7 m tall, with stout stems with a square cross-section. The leaves are 10-25 cm long, pinnate with 2-7 leaflets, and of a distinct glaucous grey-green color. Harvest 90 - 160 days depending on how cold the weather is.

In windy areas it is best to provide some support with posts and string, otherwise the plants will fall across each other. Pick the tops out once beans start setting to prevent blackfly.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Beans - broad beans, fava beans

The fresh beans are eaten steamed or boiled. As the beans mature it is better to remove their tough outer skins after cooking.
The leafy top shoots of the adult plants can be picked and steamed after flowering.
Small beans can be eaten whole in the pods.
Broad beans will freeze well. Remove from pods and blanch.

Your comments and tips

18 Jul 18, Donna (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Hi, I am just starting out and was wanting peoples opinion on grow bags. Are they any good, worth purchasing etc.
19 Jul 18, Mike L (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
As far as I'm concerned a patch of soil in the back yard is the best to grow veges in. You can then use bags pots whatever. These need a lot more attention I believe - dry out quicker. You have to weigh up the costs involved with buying and then the soil etc. It then becomes whether you are doing it for the enjoyment of it or doing it cost effectively. I love growing veges but I also try and do it cost effectively. I want value for the money I spend.
04 Aug 18, Donna (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
thanks - we have no yard so grow bags are a good alternative to having the luxury of a patch of dirt I guess.
17 Jul 18, John. Spencer (Australia - temperate climate)
I have a good crop of broad beans growing in big pots. They are approx 10--15 weeks old & flowering , however on beans are forming. I have noticed no bees are around. I am in perth. John
19 Jul 18, Liz (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Broad beans are usually slow to start setting fruit. If you check every few days, you will probably find some beans appearing. Broad beans have two methods of pollination,. Their primary method is self-pollination, in other words they do not need insects to produce a crop. However, they can also be pollinated by insect activity and will produce the best crop when pollinated using both methods. More here : www.gardenfocused.co.uk/vegetable/broad-beans.php
18 Jul 18, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
i have never grown them. Normal beans when they flower have a little bean under the flower - this grows into the bean. Go on the internet and google growing BB in Perth.
09 May 18, KB (Australia - temperate climate)
I have a smallish corner raised garden behind the woodshed where I have grown Pumpkins for the past two seasons and although my pumpkin crops have been magnificent (Queensland Blues) in my main Vegetable garden areas with several weighing in at over 5kg but this particular corner garden has only ever provided one average sized pumpkin and that was this past season. I have cleaned much of the worm droppings from my kitchen waste worm farm made two rows of troughs about 10 cm from the west facing fence and have added a line of the worm castings into the troughs and yesterday planted a packet of Broad Bean seeds into the troughs. cover and then watered these now raised mounds containing the seed. Having already provided climbing type stakes at the rear of the raised beds and will string tie the bean s to these supports when it is time to do so. The Season before last I had a bountiful supply of Broad Beans cropping for several weeks and was able to provide my non-gardening neighbours with bags full almost every week....the only problem I encountered were the mites which I think were the Rose garden pests that had swarmed all over the Broad Bean tops....so now asking if these little mites come and attack this latest crop what is the best remedy bearing in mind that I do not use chemical sprays as most of my garden veggies are edible types such as herbs, silverbeet and other similar foods, Cheers KB
11 May 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Check to see if the small raised bed behind the woodshed is receive much sun. Most time limited sun - not much of a crop. Look on the internet for an organic spray for your broad beans.
07 Mar 18, Leona Dubois (Canada - Zone 2b Sub-Arctic climate)
Hi there I am not sure what zone to really plant for as environment Canada changed the zone last year to zone 3b from zone 2b..we have over 2 feet of snow still and it was -15C when I got up this morning...what would you suggest?
24 Oct 17, Mitchell Calcott (New Zealand - temperate climate)
What are some innovative ways of selling them?
Showing 1 - 10 of 259 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. GardenGrow is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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