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Pole Beans vs. Bush Beans

August 18th, 2012

This week, I’ve been reading Vertical Gardening: Grow Up, Not Out, for More Vegetables and Flowers in Much Less Space. I do a fair amount of vertical gardening here at Chiot’s Run because I like the structure that vertical features bring to the garden. They also take up less space, a very important thing when you’re short on garden space for all the things you want to grow.

On Tuesday I read that pole beans outproduce bush beans and decided to see if this was true. Luckily, I have both pole beans and bush beans growing in the garden. The pole beans are growing on a teepee in the lower garden and the bush beans are growing in a row beside the asparagus. I have about the same number of each, perhaps more bush beans than pole beans. The pole beans were planted a week or two after the bush beans.

After harvesting both types of beans, I weighed my harvest. The bush beans produced 11 ounces and the pole beans produced 1 pound 6 ounces. (pole bean harvest on right, bush bean harvest on left).

The nice thing about pole beans is that they produce continually over a longer period of time than bush beans, they will be producing until frost. The bush beans are just starting to bloom for a second time and will probably fade soon after I harvest this batch of beans

I also prefer pole beans to bush beans because they’re easier to pick. The beans are easier to spot and higher since the vines grow vertically.

I always love learning little bits of information like this. Even though I will have more garden space next year, I’ll still be trying to maximize that space in any way that I can. There’s just something about pole beans scrambling up a trellis in the garden.

Do you grow bush beans or pole beans?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.