What Killed These Beans?

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What Killed These Beans?

Postby abrogard » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:40 am

I find beans this morning brown and dead, crispy, even, some of them, at the baby curled up stage as in the pic.

What has killed them? Is it my watering? I'm all at sixes and sevens about watering. Have recently been trying to water only when plants show signs of stress - drooping leaves is what I mean.

I test the ground all the time and I find the bean soil is not totally dried out to 'second finger joint' depth but is certainly not muddy moist either - that's before I water I'm talking about. So that seems alright to me - but I've had beans mature in colourless (white) pods and tomatoes with the bottom all blackened and rotted... something's wrong and almost certainly it's me...


IMG_9639 [640x480].JPG
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby chocolate » Tue Feb 07, 2012 7:29 pm

Hi, the tomatoes are suffering from blossom end rot, can be erratic watering...the plant needs consistent moisture to uptake calcium and other goodies, no calcium can cause BER.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby tam » Tue Feb 07, 2012 8:43 pm

Those bean plants look very stunted to me.
I would be building up the soil before I did anymore planting if it was me.
Plenty of compost dug in, fertilizer dug in, and let the beds sit for a couple of weeks than give them a good dig over.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby abrogard » Wed Feb 08, 2012 7:55 am

I'll do as you suggest. Simple as that, is it, can it be? One's soil is simply no good for growing vegetables and needs radical remaking?

Here's a pic from a different angle. They still look just as stunted? What should a dwarf bean plant look like? Twice as high as that? Twice as wide? Thicker? Fatter leaves? What?

IMG_9642 [640x480].JPG


I've put some more pics up on Picasa so's you can get a better idea of what my soil (and my actions) are producing. It may well all be a horrible poor imitation of what should be - in which case give it to me straight between the eyes and I'll get busy setting it right....

Here's where they are. If you haven't used Picasa before the 'slide show' gives the best look at it all.

https://picasaweb.google.com/abrogard/Gardensoil?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCPTfhei-icuCtwE&feat=directlink
Last edited by abrogard on Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:56 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby karyn » Wed Feb 08, 2012 9:36 am

That's pretty much what mine look like, but I put 2 seeds in each hole at planting time. I don't know why! Your beans could just be nearing their finishing time, mine finished a while ago but I planted a second crop. Have you been picking many beans? Whack a big handful of dynamic lifter around everything if unsure. I definitely do recommend getting some sleepers or something and building up your beds so you can add masses of horse poo, chicken poo, pea straw etc and let it all cook down into a yummy soil.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby abrogard » Wed Feb 08, 2012 10:06 am

Yes, I see in my 'Planting Reminder' that I can still plant Dwarf Beans. Maybe I can hurry up and get a bed prepared and plant some more, do better this time.

Those bean beds had a fair bit of cow manure and chicken manure in them a year ago. Since then nothing but a light application of Marion Council compost.

That same compost is all that the other beds have had. Nothing else. Maybe 1 bag in 2 square metres.

There was a place offering free horse manure. I'll try for it.

No one got any ideas on why those baby beans turned brown and died?

Today I put Yates tomato dust on my tomatoes which are in such a horrible state and was surprised to see the stuff marked NOT for Cucumbers! Yet for zucchini, which I think of as very similar.

I've had very poor results with my cucumbers of which I've attempted at least three varieties. Growing them too close to other things was the problem, I think. Some submerged under tomatoes. Some over watered near beans. Some blighted by that mildew thing the Pumpkin gets.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby bubba louie » Wed Feb 08, 2012 12:22 pm

After seeing how curled your beans are I did some googling and the most common reason seems to be under watering. Sorry to confuse you even more.

The soil on the photo does appear to be very sandy, so I'd be inclined to try adding lots more compost and aged manure and just be patient. Building good soil doesn't happen over night.

Maybe you could try a no dig garden on top of your soil and that way you can still grow stuff and improve your soil at the same time.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby goldbullion » Thu Feb 09, 2012 8:32 pm

Are they still flowering? Next season try climbing beans--so much more productive and they crop over a longer period. My beans are still continuously cropping since mid-Dec.
I can't tell from the photo, but get a hand lens and check the underside of the leaves for mites, particularly two spotted mite. They flourish under dry warm conditions and can destroy your beans, and a lot of other vegetables very quickly.
With the non stop rain here this summer, rust has been my biggest problem.
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Re: What Killed These Beans?

Postby abrogard » Thu Feb 09, 2012 9:15 pm

I do have a trellis climbing beans - well, they've got half the trellis, maybe two metres length. They are not cropping at all yet.

Yes, the dwarf beans are still flowering.

I will get a hand lens and check ...

Tomatoes look like they've been hit with a flame thrower....

Very dramatic business this vege growing, isn't it?
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