how to grow broad beans

the main reason to grow broad beans for me is, that you usually can’t buy them in supermarkets or greengrocers. but over time i read so many recipes with broad beans that i really wanted to try them out.

be warned. broad beans take much space, need a relatively long period of time and there will be only very few beans on your plate after you have removed the shells of the beans. but i never had regrets about sowing them and will grow broad beans next year again for sure.

you sow broad beans very early in february or march, when the soil is not frozen any more. they will become very big and bushy plants and will need therefore 50 to 60 cm space in the row and between the rows. place 2 to 3 beans in every planting hole. the planting holes should be 2 to 3 cm deep.

you have to tie them to sticks once they are growing. in general they do not have any enemies with exception of aphids. they will infest the young sprouts. you have to fight them with soap suds. soap suds is easy to prepare. just put a piece of curd soap into water until dissolved (or grate some soap with the help of a kitchen grater) and put the mixture into a spray bottle. once you won this fight they are pretty carefree.

i often read that broad beans are ready to harvest in may or june. but last year they still have been very small at that time. this year we waited until late july, beginning of august and this timing they have been just perfect.

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