Monday, July 10, 2006

Fava Beans

After seeing a friend in Vermont grow fava beans a few years ago, I decided that I'd give them a try. Fresh fava beans are not often available in the store and I really like them so I figured why not grow my own. They are a cool weather crop and should be planted in Massachusetts as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring. I started mine indoors because the place I garden is often wet in the spring and doesn't get plowed until late. This year it was plowed early. I transplanted my seedlings and then it turned cold and very windy and we had record rainfall. The seedlings simply disappeared. I'm not sure whether the rain rotted them or the wind dried them up. About a month ago one weak little plant reappeared, or more likely grew from one of the original seeds that didn't germinate at the time of transplanting. What you are looking at in the photo is my entire fava bean crop of 2006 - one little plant with one little pod. I'm not giving up on favas. I hope to try them again next year.


  1. I can't think of any legume that likes to be transplanted, and I doubt favas are an exception. I'd sow them directly next time. You might even try planting a few seeds 6-8 weeks before first frost (which kikely means now) and see if they'd make a decent fall crop.

  2. "kikely" Heh, spell much?

    Something I should mention for anyone who might like to try planting beans this time of year: plant the seeds a little deeper than normal and keep the ground moist until the true leaves shade the ground. I also like to provide a little shade for emerging seedlings using some lath.