Several kinds of beans are grown for food : broad beans for their green seeds ; dwarf (or French) beans for both the green pods and the dried seeds (Haricots) ; and runner beans exclusively for their green pods. Included in the dwarf bean group are the so-called Haricot beans which are grown for the sake of their dried seeds, the green pods being of low edible value.
Beans, especially the French and Runner types, respond to a fertilizer containing phosphate and potash. Apply the ” National Growmore Fertilizer ” as directed for peas.
Recommended varieties of the Long-Pod and the Windsor classes are Early Long-Pod and Broad Windsor, the first named being suitable for the earliest crops.
Well drained and deeply dug soils are necessary for broad beans, but manure is not required unless the soil is very poor. As a rule, the crop does best when grown on land that has been well manured for a previous crop, such as potatoes. The plants respond to a light top dressing of nitrate of soda or sulphate of ammonia just before they come into flower.
The earliest and often most successful crops of broad beans are obtained by sowing in the autumn (from the end of October to the end of November), followed by a second sowing during February. For these sowings, use a Long-Pod variety such as Early Long-Pod or Seville Long-Pod.
Further crops are secured by continuing the sowings until about mid-April, using the Windsor type. Where severe winters have to be contended with, early crops of broad beans may be secured by sowing in cold frames in November and December and transplanting to the open ground in March.
It is best to sow the seed in angled rows with a distance of 6 in. between each plant. Angled rows should be 2 ft. 6 in. apart, but if single rows are used, 2 ft. will suffice between them.
Sow in holes made 2 in. deep with a dibber, dropping one good seed in each hole.
The plants should be topped as soon as the trusses of blossoms are all developed ; this encourages development of pods, promotes earliness and checks attacks of Black Fly (Aphis).
One pint of Long-Pod beans will sow a single angled row about 50 ft. long, and 1 pint of Windsor about 40 ft.