Broad bean Duet, multiple pods

Broad beans

Eager for a head start, in previous years I have made a late autumn sowing of broad beans. This year the rain has reduced my heavy soil to soggy mud. So to avoid my seeds rotting in the ground I shall delay sowing my broad beans until February. 

I could could sow some under cover now, if I had a cold (unheated) green house or cold frame. This protects them from frost and produces sturdy plants for transplanting when the weather improves in the spring.

If you are fortunate to live in milder parts of the UK or have a sheltered site with well drained soil, then November is the month to sow varieties. such as Aquadulce Claudia or Meteor. Otherwise wait until next year and from February, sow Masterpiece Green Longpod with kidney-shaped green beans or Crimson Flowered, an heirloom variety with good pest and disease resistance. Karmazyn is white flowered but produces red beans. 

Longpods are hardier, used for autumn or early spring sowing with kidney -shaped beans. Windsor types produce rounder beans in short, broad pods. If you don't have a large plot, The Sutton is a dwarf variety suitable for containers (or windy sites!)

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