Learn How to Grow Black Beans In 7 Easy Steps

Black Beans Are The Best!

Do you like black beans for their taste or for the health benefits they offer? They have been a staple of North American diets for almost 7000 years. Black beans have a mildly sweet flavor with a nice texture and provide several vital nutrients and minimum sugar and fat. If you want to use it regularly, you can try to grow it yourself because it is easy to grow.

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How to Grow Black Beans

It requires a little bit of work and care, and soon you could be harvesting black beans in your yard. I know this because I decided to grow black beans in my garden and soon found success. I did have some help in the form of a friendly neighbour who knows all about black beans or black turtle beans.  I learned how to grow black beans and would love to share this information with you all. Do you know how black beans look?

  • Black in color with a white center
  • Small and oval or boat-shaped
  • Cooked beans have a slightly purplish hue
  • Up to ½ inch in size approximately
  • When cooked, the beans have a creamy texture

Health Benefits

One of the reasons I wanted to grow black beans was to get the maximum nutritional benefit. They are rich in antioxidants, fiber, proteins, and carbohydrates. My doctor advised me to add black beans to my diet as it helps in processing the calories more effectively. Some of the main health benefits are

 Regulating Blood Sugar

Generally, high carbohydrates foods cause a spike in blood sugar, but not black beans. When people eat black beans with rice, blood sugar levels get lower than if they ate only rice. For people with diabetes, adding black beans can help in controlling blood sugar levels.

Preventing Cancer

Taking black beans regularly can help in reducing the risk of stomach, kidney, and colon cancers. Some trials have shown that they may fight the growth of breast cancer tumors as well.

Eye Health

Black beans contain antioxidants that can help to protect your eyes against age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. These beans are also high in Vitamin C, which is known to lessen cataract risk.

Heart Health

Eating black beans can lower the amount of bad cholesterol in the blood. This helps in reducing the risk of developing heart disease.


Steps for Growing Black Beans

You can grow black beans easily  by following the steps given here

1. Choose And Prepare The Right Planting Location

  • Black beans love sunlight and warmth. Make sure that you select a patch that gets plenty of sunlight during the day. A minimum of 6 hours of sunlight every day is ideal.
  • Check the soil pH and make the corrections before planting. Black beans will grow best in soil, having a pH level between 6 and 7. A home pH test kit is available in most garden centers, and you can do the test easily.
  • If the soil pH is either too low or too high, you will have to correct it. Usually, lime is added to raise the pH level, and sulfur is added to lower the pH level.
  • The correction process may take months, so you need to plan well in advance and carry out soil testing much before the planting season.
  • If it is difficult to change the soil pH, you may consider growing beans in a raised bed.
  • Black beans ideally require fertilizer that has low-nitrogen content. If you have been growing other crops, especially other beans, on the same patch, then it is better to use some organic fertilizer before planting. Black bean plants will produce lots of leaves and only a few beans if given too much nitrogen.

2. Planting the Black Beans

  • The first thing you need to do is buy black bean seeds. You can buy them online or from a local store. Just make sure that you purchase good quality seeds.
  • Planting black beans late in the spring is best because they flourish in warm weather.
  • The soil temperature should be around 60 degrees Fahrenheit before planting.
  • The beans will germinate between 10 and14 days and will reach maturity in approximately 100 days.
  • It would be best if you tried to plant the beans when you are sure that they will get at least 3 to 4 months of warm weather.

3. Pre-Soak the Black Beans

  • If you want the black beans to germinate faster, you can prepare them by soaking them overnight or at least for a few hours. Additionally, you can soak the beans in clean water for at least 2 to 3 hours before planting.
  • Applying a legume inoculant either to the soil or to the beans will help the beans absorb the nitrogen present in the soil. Use an inoculant, which is made especially for beans and other such legumes.
  • Mycorrhizal fungi can be used to help the roots form and with nitrogen fixation.
  • Alternatively, you can place the beans in a bag with the inoculant and shake it gently to coat the beans before planting.

4. Plant the Beans

  • Plant your beans at least 1 inch deep. You can make a long furrow about 1 inch deep instead of digging separate holes.
  • Ensure that the seeds are spaced apart to allow them room to spread as they grow.
  • Cover the beans with a thin layer of soil after planting.
  • Bush variety requires more space and should be planted at least 6 to 10 inches apart.
  • Sow the beans with their eyes facing down while planting.
  • Lightly water the soil because moist soil encourages beans to germinate. Don’t let it get soggy.

5. Care for The Bean Plant

  • Water the bean plants if they look wilted in the mornings. Black bean plants are tough and don’t need much water. Water only if the soil feels dry and doesn’t allow water to stand.
  • Overwatering or soggy soil can lead to root rot.
  • Put mulch around the base of the bean plants. It helps in keeping the weeds away, retains moisture, and keeps the soil warm. Organic mulch like straw or hay works best.
  • Mulching should be done about 2 to 3 weeks after planting or after the plants have grown at least a couple of inches.
  • Leave one or two inches of space that is mulch-free around the stem of each plant.
  • Put mulch around the base of the bean plants. It helps in keeping the weeds away, retains moisture, and keeps the soil warm. Organic mulch like straw or hay works best.
  • Each trellis or support should be at least 3 feet high
  • Be careful while you weed around the plant. Black beans have shallow roots, and if you are not careful, they may come out. Pull up weeds by hand when they are small.

6. Protect the Bean Plants

  • Black beans are vulnerable to attacks by various insects and pests like aphids. Immediately pull out the worms or use a garden hose with sharp spray to rinse them off.
  • Using organic pesticides like neem oil is a better option than using chemical ones.
  • If you want to avoid using any pesticide, then introduce some ladybugs in the garden. They feast on aphids and other small insects.

7. Harvesting the Black Beans

  • When you notice the pods turning yellow and dry, it is time to harvest the beans. If you harvest while still green, you need to let them dry and mature completely before removing the bean inside.
  • Between 90 and 130 days, the black beans are ready for harvest.
  • Benas of the bush variety will all mature at the same time, so harvesting is done simultaneously. For the pole variety, you will need to harvest regularly throughout the growing season.
  • Use a pair of scissors or pruners to snip off the mature pods. Open one to see if it is ready before breaking off all the pods. Another way to check is to bite down on the pod. If it is completely dry, it will not leave any bite marks.
  • It is possible to harvest immature beans, but you cannot store them for long.
  • Harvesting in dry weather is best. If the beans are almost ready and the forecast is for rain, it is better to bring the whole plant inside. Hang it upside down and leave it to finish drying.
  • Remove the beans and let them dry. Spread them on a flat surface and let them dry for a couple of days before cooking or storing them.
  • If you hand-shelling the pods is difficult, put them inside a sack and then either stomp on it or hit it against a hard surface.
  • Store the beans in an airtight container. The black beans can be stored for one year or so if kept properly. Please keep them in a cool and dry place and keep them protected from insects. Watch this video to learn more.

Conclusion

Black beans are easy to grow and care for and can be called a ‘no-nonsense plant.’ They offer great health benefits if made a part of the regular diet. The following factors are important to grow healthy black bean plants.

  • Varieties
  • Best time & condition to grow
  • Soil
  • Soil & planting
  • Watering & Fertilizing
  • Harvesting & Storing

If you find the information given here useful, feel free to share it with others. We will be happy to answer any questions that you may have. Contact us if you want more information. Make black beans a part of your diet and see multiple benefits.

Hoang Quang

Hello! I’m Quang Hoang and Grow Gardener is my little nook for all the adventures, and occasional misadventures, on my journey in gardening! As I continue to awaken life in little seeds and struggle to keep flora alive, I’ll be here sharing with all of you what I’ve learned! Join me in my little garden, and let’s grow together.

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