Sunday, 25 June 2017

Succeeding with Beans

My post title is a play on words: I am referring to the "succession sowing" technique.

I have been growing my potatoes in big 35-litre black plastic containers, and I have been harvesting them for about a month now.

This potato plant is just about ready for harvesting. Notice how the foliage is mostly dry and brown.

If you haven't seen it already, you might be interested to read my recent review of this year's Early potatoes, HERE.

Harvesting the potatoes gives me a further opportunity for growing something. As each pot is emptied, I fill it up again with the soil that has just come out, and sow / plant something else. This time I have sown some seeds for the Dwarf French Bean "Processor". So far I have sown two pots-worth at an interval of about a week. The first ones have germinated, but the second ones have only just gone in so they haven't appeared just yet.

The seeds were from a packet sent to me last year by a friend in Holland, so not fresh, and probably because of this the germination rate has been poor. I sowed 10 seeds but only 6 have come up. Maybe the others will eventually show...

It's worth mentioning that since the soil in these pots has already supported one crop this year, it may be a bit tired, so it needs refreshing. I have added some pelleted chicken manure, but if I had some homemade compost available I'd probably use that instead / as well.

Last year my second crops included Leeks, using up spare seedlings. I think I will do this again. The Leeks never grew very big, but they were nice (and worthwhile) nonetheless. I have some Leek seedlings going spare again, so I have nothing to lose by planting them in the potato-pots.

I've been thinking what else I could grow as second crops and have concluded that it might be worth trying Radishes and some salads - maybe Rocket or Greek Cress. All of these are quick-growing plants, so they would have time to mature before the end of Summer. Last year I tried Beetroot and Carrots, but neither of those made it to maturity before the growing-season finished.


  1. Hi, my potatoes arnt far off the same stage and I'm thinking of sticking some French beans in! Is there no concern about disease etc? Can I just use the same soil with some chicken pellets and away I go?

    1. That's what I do, and it seems to work fine. I don't think spuds & beans suffer from the same pests/ diseases anyway.

  2. We have filled some growing 'boxes' with homemade compost and plan to grow some salads and a few other things in them including some Pak Choy etc.

  3. It's lovely planting something like rocket or radishes - as they grow so much quicker you get all that satisfaction without so much of a wait!!


Thank you for taking time to leave me a comment! Please note that Comment Moderation is enabled for older posts.