Homeschool Garden Club - Runner Beans
This week’s weather has not been kind to either the plants nor the Homeschool Garden Club gardeners, we have had strong winds, heavy rain and even hail. However, we are now looking forward to better weather and beans!
Did you know that beans have been grown and eaten by us humans for over 2000 years! The beans we are growing this year are Runner beans. These are super easy to grow and don’t take up much space. You can grow runner beans in the ground or in a container. You can even plant them in your flower bed. Just remember that runner beans like to climb, so you’ll need to give them some long sticks or canes to scramble up.
Why are we growing and eat them?
Runner beans are full of vitamins and minerals. These are the things that help we to grow strong and give you energy to both play and be active when outside enjoying the weather:
Vitamin A: essential for eye, skin, bone and tooth health.
Calcium: we need this for healthy bones and teeth which grow strong.
Magnesium: this helps our bones strong and your heart healthy.
Iron: Gives your blood the strength to carry oxygen around your body.
Potassium: Keeps your heart healthy and helps plenty of blood to get to your brain.
And on top of this, beans have lot of healthy fibre: this keeps your digestive system, form you mouth right through to the other end in tip-top condition.
What you’ll need:
Runner bean seeds
Long sticks & string
Find a sunny spot where there’s not much wind.
Get the ground ready by adding compost, or if you’re using a container, fill it up.
Build a special wigwam with sticks and string for your runner beans to climb up. They get about 3m tall!
Poke your finger into the compost at the bottom of a stick and make a small hole.
Gently place a seed into the hole and cover with compost.
Sprinkle the area with water.
Water your runner beans every day, as they get very thirsty.
If your plants get too tall, pinch off the top to stop them growing.
Last year, our beans died a death in the 40 degrees heat. They really didn't stand a chance in the heat. Had they made it we would have cooked them.
Pick your beans when they get to about 20 centimetres long.
Do this every 2 days to keep them growing. The more you pick the more they grow!
Now it is important to remember to always cook runner beans before you eat them. They can give you quite a tummy ache if you eat them raw.
One of granddads is a big runner bean fan and he has suggested a few varieties we might like to try. We will be trying some purple ones this year.