In anticipation of October’s Farm to School month Georgia Organics has launched the Make Room for Legumes campaign. Schools can register and receive free seeds as well as resources for the classroom including lesson plans. This is a fantastic program for all schools.
If you are excited to make room for legumes, it is not too late to grow beans this season in your school or community garden. If you are planting in August, choose bush bean varieties. These will mature in 50-60 days. Consider Bronco, Roma, Blue Lake which are all harvested and used fresh.
Dried beans are also a possibility although they require a longer maturity time. Dragon Tongue and Tiger Eyes are used fresh or dried. The pretty black and white Calypso beans or the historic red Hidatsa beans are traditionally dried. Consider planting several varieties.
One concern planting this late are Mexican bean beetles. Keep a look out for these pests, checking regularly for eggs. Removing the eggs is the best way to handle these pests in a small garden. Scout regularly!
Becky is a Georgia Certified Beekeeper and works with community and school gardeners to increase beneficial insect habitat.In 2017, she created the Georgia Pollinator Census project.Ask her about it!