Looking for suggestions on a good bean to grow

vangavFebruary 28, 2011

I'm looking for a good variety of bean to grow in my backyard. Being a novice gardener I was hoping that to get suggestions on what type might be best?

I have a fence that is about 3.5' tall, in full sun that I'd like to use as a wall of sorts to prevent my dog from poking their heads through and barking at my neighbors. I thought beans with their large leaves may fill up space between the slats but I'm open to other suggestions. I do have some concerns, first we get snow, a lot of snow and birds by the dozen. I'd also like to get something that I dont have to pamper too much, I'm new to this so mostly foolproof would be ideal. Also, I'm not sure how beans(or most veggies for that matter) survive the winter. I can cover them or do mulch to protect the stalks for the winter-no problem, but I'd rather not plant new seeds/plants every year. Not sure if this is at all possible but I'd love help?


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There are few perennial vegetables and beans are not among them except for a few types.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2011 at 3:13PM
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First, regarding surviving winter, up there in Michigan, most vegetables don't. About the only ones are parsnips, shallots, garlic, horseradish. Some herbs are perennial, like sage. Some self-sow (which makes them seem perennial!) like peppermint.

As for pole beans, putting them against 3.5' fence will cause them to spread out sideways once the vines reach the top of the fence. Most pole varieties can easily reach 10' and more (i.e., Kentucky Wonder, Blue Lake, Rattlesnake).

You can try Burpee's Golden Pole Bean, it's about the only variety I can think of which doesn't try to climb as high as most others. (Burpee themselves discontinued this variety a decade or two ago, but you can still find it from the occasional supplier of heirloom beans.)

You can also try a half-runner bean; they won't really climb, but if your dog is small enough they may form a sufficient barrier.

If you want to consider things in the flower department, there are all sorts of ways to cover a fence, ranging from roses to climbing nasturtiums.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2011 at 4:20PM
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mark_roeder(4B IA)

How about Reines de Violettes, an old bourbon rose. The canes grow to at least seven feet and I stretch them across my corner fence in both directions. Rose colors are pink to purple depending on the cloud cover.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2011 at 12:47AM
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