Vegetable Overview: Pole Beans


Discover how to grow cucumbers with instructions on starting seed, transplanting, site selection, care and maintenance, water and fertilization requirements, pests and disease, and harvesting and storage.

Pole Beans Stats at a Glance

Soil Conditions: Well-drained, fertile soil

Sun: Full sun

Soil pH Conditions: 5.8-6.5

Planting Instructions

Can I Start Pole Beans from Seed?

Pole Beans do not perform well when transplanted.  The seeds germinate quickly and can be sown directly into the garden. Do not plant in soil that is too wet.  Bean seeds crack and germinate poorly when too wet.

When to Start Seeds: After the threat of frost has passed and the soil has warmed.

Time to Germination: 8-10 days


When Do I Plant Pole Beans?

Don’t rush the Pole Beans.  They prefer warm air and warm soil. Plant seeds after the last threat of frost has passed and the soil reaches 70°F.

Pole Beans perform best when the soil is warm, preferably 70-80°F.  Seeds will take longer to germinate if soil temperatures are below 60°F.

Cold air can damage plants.

Soil Temperature: 70-80°F.


Where Do I Plant Pole Beans?

Soil Type: Well-drained, fertile soil

Sun Exposure: Full sun

Soil pH: 5.8-6.5


How Far Apart Do I Plant Pole Beans?

Create mounds 3-4” apart at the base of a trellis.  Sow 3-4 seeds per mound at a depth of an inch.

Pole Beans Plant Care and Maintenance

Bean root systems are shallow and weak.  Do not aggressively cultivate weeds too close to the plant base.  Hand pulling weeds is highly recommended.


How Often Should I Water Pole Beans?

The key to watering pole beans is to maintain a consistent moisture level.  The soil should be moist to a depth of 6”.  Allowing the soil to dry out between watering will result in a shallow, weak root system.  Mulch around the plant will help to lock in moisture.


Should I Fertilize Pole Beans?

A soil test will determine if pole beans require fertilization.  The optimal soil pH level for pole beans is 5.8-6.5.  If you are unsure of the soil fertility, you can apply a 5-10-10 fertilizer prior to planting.

Pole Beans Diseases

The most common diseases associated with this plant include bean yellow mosaic virus, stem and root rots, bacterial blights, bean rusts.

Pole Beans Pests

The most common pests associated with this plant include aphids, corn earworms, Mexican bean beetles, stink bugs, and thrips.

Harvesting and Storing Pole Beans

When Do I Harvest Pole Beans?

Harvest beans when fully elongated and firm before the seeds form visible bumps on the pod.

Beans should be harvested when the plant is dry.  Picking beans when the plant is wet will encourage the spread of bacterial diseases.

To encourage additional blooming, it is important to harvest pole beans before the seeds mature in the pod.


How Do I Harvest Pole Beans?

Carefully snap the beans directly above the cap from the stems and branches, as they are very brittle.


How Do I Store Pole Beans?

Beans are best when used immediately.  They can be stored in a plastic bag in the refrigerator. For optimal freshness, use within 3-5 days.

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