For an edible, ornamental, Scarlet Runner Beans are a favourite among gardeners. The beans are edible, the flowers pretty and these climbing beans are fairly easy to grow from seed or seedling. The wonderful ‘scarlet’ flowers are where this excellent bean gets its name.
This is actually a perennial plant hence the name ‘seven year bean’ and it is grown both as an edible plant, and an ornamental. Long flowering through summer, reaching up to 3m. It will die back in autumn, to re shoot in spring. An excellent plant for kids to grow.
How to grow scarlet Runner Beans
A frost free position is essential, or grow as an annual and plant after the danger of frosts.
We have seen these planted next to a tall post with a little wire to act as a climbing frame, the beans will quickly grow up and cover the frame.
A trellis or fence will work well. A humus rich moist soil is the best growing medium. Mulch around the base to keep weeds away and a cool root run.
- Prepare soil by digging in some well rotted compost.
- Plant Red Runner Bean seeds 5cm deep and 15 – 20 cm apart.
- Keep the soil moist through the germination period.
- Seeds should germinate within 6 – 9 days.
- Water regularly after germination
- Mulch around the plants to maintain a cool moist root run.
You do not need to fertilise after planting.
Encourage insects for successful pollination as runner beans are not self pollinating.
Harvesting Red Runner Beans
From seed planting to harvesting will take around 10 weeks in good conditions.
Beans pods (the green bit) are best picked when young, before the bean seeds themselves actually begin to develop, if you intend to eat them. Regular early harvesting will promote more flowers and more beans.
You can also leave the beans on the vine to dry to collect for next season, or once they have swollen up, bring them inside to dry. The beans are a wonderful purple and pink, and can also be cooked in soups, stews and any other dish.
Scarlet Runner Beans are available from the following suppliers
412 James Lane, Fern Hill VIC. 3458 - Phone 0419002651
Large range of Rare plants, Climbers, Bulbs, Perennials Fruit Trees, Ornamental Trees and Shrubs. Available both Retail and by Mail Order