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How to sow and grow Romano pole bean

Delicious string beans with fairly broad, flat pods. This variety grows more than 2 meters tall, so let it climb up a trellis. You'll get a lot of juicy beans.

The more you pick, the longer you harvest.
Snijbonen in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Romano pole bean plants

What are Romano pole beans?

Romano pole beans are a type of string beans. Like all beans, they are members of the legume family. The pods are pretty flat and can grow up to 25 cm long.

In the past, string beans were sliced thinly to bring out the flavor. That's how they got the name. My grandmother even had a special cutting machine for them.

A traditional dish where I'm from is called 'bare bottoms in the grass': white beans mixed with the finely cut string beans.

Nowadays, most people just cut them into 1 cm pieces.

Romano pole beans are super healthy

Romano pole beans contain vitamins A, C, and K and have lots of carotenes like lutein, beta-carotene, violaxanthin, and neoxanthin. They work as antioxidants to help prevent inflammation and diseases like type 2 diabetes. Flavonoids in these beans - like quercetin, kaempferol, and catechins - enhance their antioxidant properties even more. 

Romano pole beans are also rich in potassium and magnesium and high in fiber, which is good for our gut bacteria. 

And calories? Hardly any 🙂
Snijbonen zijn super gezond
Romano pole beans are super healthy

More about our Romano pole bean

This variety produces a huge harvests of long, juicy string beans. 
  • Species name: Helda 
  • Family: legume
  • Plants per square patch: 8 along your trellis 
  • Height: 200 cm and up 
  • Sowing time: May and June 
  • Sowing depth: 2 to 3 cm 
  • Germination: 21°C in 7-10 days 
  • Time to harvest: after 9-10 weeks 
  • Sunlight: full sun 
Want to buy Romano pole beans? We sell seed bags separately, or, you can get them as part of a seed pack: 

What do you need to grow your own Romano pole beans?

Just this:
  • a 30x30 cm patch with airy, nutrient-rich soil mix
  • Romano pole bean seeds
  • a spot with at least 4 hours of sunlight a day
  • a trellis or something similar for the plants to grow on
In other words: an MM-Mini, or a square patch in one of our garden boxes, an MM-Klimrek trellis, and MM-Mix.

Growing your own Romano pole beans is easy with the MM-Mix. If you grow in low-quality (potting) soil, disappointment is pretty much guaranteed. So don't skimp on soil mix: go for the best.
Romano pole beans on a trellis

How do you sow and grow Romano pole beans?

Romano pole beans are included in the free Planty Gardening app. Use it, and you'll get step-by-step guidance from seed to harvest.

Each plant goes through a number of stages - we call them levels. The app tells you exactly what to do at each level and checks in when your plants are ready for the next.

So you don't need to know how to grow beans before you start: the app takes you through every step.
But if you'd like to read more about those steps, here's what the process looks like:

Level 1: Pre-sow Romano pole beans

Beans need a lot of heat to germinate. If it's just a little cold or rainy outside, the seedlings won't sprout or they'll be weak when they do.

So, pre-sow your beans indoors in a pot with equal parts MM-Mix and vermiculite.
Kiemende snijbonen in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Sprouting Romano pole beans

Level 2 and 3: Sowing Romano pole beans

As soon as the seedlings are visible, transfer them to a square patch in your vegetable garden box. 

Here's how:
  • make 2 trenches of about 5 cm deep: 1 in front of and 1 behind the trellis
  • scoop the seedlings out of the pot with a spoon
  • plant the 4 best seedlings in each trench
  • carefully cover the trenches with soil mix
Now you have a bean patch 🙂 

In a week or so, you should see something come up. It depends a bit on the weather. 

If it's still cold out, you can cover the patch with a crop cover like the MM-Muts or a few plastic containers. These help keep in the heat and keep out birds and snails.
Plant de gekiemde snijbonen in je Makkelijke Moestuinbak bij het klimrek
Seedlings ready for planting

Level 4: Taking care of your plants

After a week or 2, your seedlings have already become small plants.

They'll grow quite fast in the coming weeks. You don't have to do much about that, nice and easy 🙂 
Kleine snijboonplantjes bij het klimrek in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Small bean plants under the trellis

Level 5: Guide your plants up the trellis

Once the tendrils have found the trellis, they'll wrap themselves around it and climb up.
Snijbonen klimmen vanzelf omhoog aan het klimrek van de Makkelijke Moestuin
Romano pole beans climb up themselves
In a few weeks, the first flowers and pods appear. Then it's time for the next level.
Bloemen en de eerste boontjes aan de snijbonen van de Makkelijke Moestuin
Flowers and the first beans

Level 6: Harvesting the first Romano pole beans

About 9 to 10 weeks after sowing, you can harvest the first beans.

By harvesting early, the plants produce more flowers. More flowers mean more beans.

It's normal for the leaves to turn a little yellow and get uglier, especially around the bottom of the plant.
De eerste snijbonen in de Makkelijke Moestuin zijn klaar om te oogsten
The first bean: ready to be harvested

How do you harvest and use Romano pole beans?

Cut the bean pods from the plants when they're about 20 cm long. I use scissors so I don't damage the beans.

Never eat string beans raw, always cook them.

You can cut Romano pole beans - pods and all - into narrow, diagonal strips and boil them briefly. I highly recommend adding them to white beans for 'bare bottoms in the grass'.

Or, cut them into large chunks. Briefly cooked and cooled, they're delicious in a salad. Or how about a stir fry, vegetable soup, or stew? Delicious.
Snijbonen oogsten in de Makkelijke Moestuin
Harvesting Romano pole beans

The last levels

Keep harvesting your Romano pole beans until there's none left. You can keep this up until October.

The plants may grow high above the trellis. No worries: just guide them to the side or below.

Once your plants stop producing beans and flowers, it's time for the last level: empty your patch and get ready to sow something new.
Leid stokbonen opzij of weer omlaag als ze hoger worden dan het klimrek
String beans grow taller than the trellis
So: want to grow your own Romano pole beans?

So: want to grow your own Romano pole beans?

It's a tasty vegetable with a huge yield per square patch.

Plus: with our materials and with help from the app, it's almost impossible to fail 😉

Get your Romano pole bean seeds here or get started with a complete starter kit:

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