Broad Beans Flowers but No Beans

by Helen

I have been waiting for my broad beans to grow for months now, the flowers have been there for so long now I don't believe I will get any broad beans.

I am very upset cos this is the first time I have grown any-thing and even though every-thing else has done ok, my broad beans have been very difficult to take care of.

Please tell me that all is not lost and that I will get broad beans on my plant when the flower has finally died. At least 2 months if not more the flowers have been out. thank you x


Hi Helen,

The reason why you have flowers and no beans on your broad beans could be due to a number of factors that you should be able to control.

First of all, check your soil. As mentioned in the article, broad beans love a heavily manured, rich soil that should contain high levels of calcium, magnesium and potash to grow really well. Also feed them regularly with a dose of seaweed or compost tea.

Natural sources of calcium include wood ash, crushed egg shells and bone meal. A natural source for magnesium is banana peels. Cut them up and dig them around your broad beans. Potash may be added in the form of rock dust, seaweed meal or ash from your fireplace as long as you burn untreated timber. Liming the soil will also help in growing broad beans.

Secondly, broad beans are partially self-pollinating, and partially cross-pollinating. If you have a lack of bees or insect action on your broad beans you will have a lack of pods.

If the weather has been too windy for the bees to come out then you won't have the pollination you were hoping for. Also, if the weather has been too hot, then your pods won't set either.

For the pollination problem you can try and self-pollinate yourself by taking a small paint brush and tickling the throats of the broad bean flowers to get the pollen onto the stamens. Time consuming, but if your soil conditions are right, you will definitely see the results with pods shortly after that.

If the weather has been hot of late, then mist the broad bean flowers to encourage them to set. The best time to do this is of an evening time. Add 2 tablespoons of agricultural lime to about 2 gallons of water. Spray the plants and deep water to keep the roots cool.

Broad beans do take a while to grow it takes 3-4 months from seed to harvest, so you may be a little impatient.

Let us know how you get on and don't give up. Growing vegetables are well worth the trouble.

Countryfarm Lifestyles

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Jun 16, 2015
Pollinating Beans Myself
by: Anonymous

Can I please know how to pollinate beans by myself?

You can pollinate any vegetable by yourself, but why would you? If you keep bees, and encourage insects into your garden, pollinating vegetables and fruit trees should be done for you.

However, if you want to pollinate yourself then get yourself a small paint brush. Brush the pollen from the stamens and then brush over the stigma of the plant. This will ensure that your broad beans will be pollinated and should produce a good harvest.

Apr 05, 2013
Broad Beans Harvest
by: Anonymous

Broad beans only produce beans during the spring months no matter when you plant them (go here for a info sheet )

Plant too early and they will flower and hibernate until spring and then produce beans at a reduced yield. Same goes if they are planted too late.

Oct 09, 2012
Pollinating broad beans
by: Helen (Australia)

Great site, thank you!

For anyone in Australia, it may be useful to know that honeyeaters are excellent pollinators.

Perhaps there are some birds in UK too that perform this function.

I was worried that my beans weren't setting this year as the winter had been cold and wet, but the honeyeaters did the trick.

Sep 03, 2012
Trouble with Broad Beans
by: Anonymous

I assume you are growing your beans in a sunny location so let's go to the next item.

The most important requirement is to have the proper nutrients in the soil. I myself use well rotted manure from my neighbors cows. If you do not have a close enough neighbor for manure then start a compost bed if you have not done so.

I find my beans grow best in a loose rich soil. I also use manure tea. Just place manure in a 5 gallon bucket filled with water and let soak for several days. I pour mine directly on the soil using any handy item for dipping the liquid from the buck. Then I just replace what ever water I took out.

You can usually tell by the color when it is time to dump the spent manure on the compost pile and start a new batch.

When strained through a filter of some kind I even use this on all my other plants as well as my house plants.

Another suggestion if the means are possible is to lay out rows of that well rotten manure now for planting all your crops next year. When moving to my new home site I had rocky hard ground and tried this trick of laying out beds 2 foot wide by 12"-18" deep. Some of my neighbors thought I was crazy until they saw the results.

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