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Beginning with broad beans, as every adventure should…

August 24, 2011 | Gardening, Vegetable Gardening | 10 comments | Author:

My first attempt of growing broad beans (or anything for that matter) in something other than a no-dig bed. Not planted in the still-being-pig-tractored market garden, mind you. These beans went into what will become our kitchen garden, next to the woolshed.

Joyce sent up the broad bean seed from Allsun Farm, which is great. Hopefully this will mean that these broad beans will be adapted to our erratic dryish climate, which is similar to Allsun’s. And for the first time, I planted something by the book. Or by the CD Rom, in this case.

Joyce's mud map of what our kitchen garden will grow this year

This garden surrounds the Milkwood kitchen caravan, that used to be our home. I loved this garden, it was my little outpost of loveliness in the maelstrom of house building, new parenthood and new life establishment while we lived there. And I’m so excited about getting it pumping with good food this year.

I followed the directions for row size, hilling and bed prep  for broad beans on the Growing Annual Vegetables CD ROM. I’m not so sure how these beans will go, given their proximity to the eucalyptus next door, but they’re as much a crop to prep the soil of the bed as anything, i imagine.

You will note that I mulched the rows. This might be against our new intensive growing rules, but I couldn’t help it! Still adapting to the non-mulched approach required for some crops (of which I’m not sure whether broad beans are one )…

Fingers crossed and praying to the gods of nitrogen-fixing nodules…

The 'before' shot
Bed prepped and hoed and hilled
2nd-in-command broad bean planter. Note mini Ho-mi in hand...
Beds planted and mulched. Grow beans, grow!

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  • lindawoodrow

    I’ll be really interested to hear how they go. In my part of the world it is exactly the wrong time for broad beans – heading into the heat of summer. In my subtropical climate, I get a really short window of opportunity when it is cool enough for them. Mine are just about to set seed, and I’m hoping to get a harvest before it really warms up. I plant super intensively too, but I still mulch.

    • milkwoodkirsten

      Happy harvest, Linda. Good to hear about your planting technique :)

  • shanegenziuk

    Best of luck with it mate. I’ve got mine just about to come on leading into Spring. Watching those flowers growing through Winter will hopefully be rewarded!

    • milkwoodkirsten


  • Darren (Green Change)

    Similar to Linda, mine are just starting to flower and should be setting pods soon. They’re a great “set and forget” crop for over the winter – I haven’t even watered them since I planted the seeds!

    • milkwoodkirsten

      happy harvesting, Darren :)

  • Teash

    I grow broadbeans in Mudge almost all year round!! Have had lots of success with them, you will always find broadbeans in our garden.

    • milkwoodkirsten

      Teash did you know you can eat the leaf tips? great early-spring salad…

  • Pingback: Beginning with broad beans, as every adventure should… (via Milkwood: permaculture farming and living) « syaztrous. and let me be…()

  • Teash Bassett

    Wondering if we can have an update on your broadbeans, mine are in great shape, quiet a few pods developing nicely. Have lots of ants though.

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