Thursday, 19 July 2012

Tall Runners

Runner Beans 18th July 2012

The winter of 2010-11 killed off a large clump of bamboo in the garden. Unfortunate though this was, it did provide me with several dozen ten feet tall bamboo stakes. It was this that gave me the impetus to grow runner beans this year. The last time I grew them was in 1968. Well if I am honest it would be more accurate to say that I helped grow them that year. There was certainly an element of adult supervision.

The seeds were sown indoors in individual two and a half inch pots on 28th April. Using the bamboos I created two foot diameter wigwam structures with five poles around the circumference and a central pole. Willow whips wrapped around the wigwams at various heights gave structural and additional climbing support. The young bean plants were planted out, two at the base of each of the outer bamboos, at the beginning of June.

 As can be seen from the photograph the plants are now almost at the top of the bamboos,so it will not be too long before I will have to nip out the growing tips to prevent the plants becoming top heavy. With present weather conditions I don't expect that I will have to provide extra water to help swell the bean pods. One benefit of our glorious summer!

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