Runner bean 'Painted Lady'
Runner beans were introduced to the UK in 1633, including the Painted Lady, making it one of the oldest named vegetable varieties still available. The plants are most often grown for their green pods. However, many people do not realise that they may also eat the mature beans inside the pods, as well as the bright scarlet flowers.
Runner beans are a popular plant for vegetable gardens, but can also make an extremely attractive edible plant for the ornamental garden.
Average height: 1-2m
Aspect: Full Sun
Soil type: Prefer full sun, but will grow in partial shade. They must be protected from strong winds
Sowing period: May to July
First signs of blossom: 6 to 8 weeks
Average flowering period: 3 months
Contents: Approximately 50 seeds
Bees love runner bean flowers and most runner bean varieties are dependent upon bees for pollination, so try to attract bees into your garden with other bee friendly flowers
Harvest flowers as soon as they appear. Beans should be picked before they feel coarse and the beans are visible through the pods. Picking flowers from the plants will diminish the number of beans produced. However, many gardeners find they grow too many beans, so harvesting flowers and beans should not be problematic