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Optimal Green Bean Trellis Design?

 
Posts: 23
Location: Wisconsin
monies urban homestead
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I am making a trellis for the green beans in my garden. There seem to be a huge amount of different designs available to choose from. Since I'm growing the green beans in a raised bed, I've been making a net from sisal twine instead of a tepee or something to save space.

I've been able to find the Green beans can climb to five feet. However, I can't seem to find any resources online about how much space to leave between the inter-crossed twine, or how low the bottom of the trellis has to be so the green beans can climb on.

What information is available about what sort of trellis green beans would prefer?

I am also growing Green Beans in another garden. Would 1" chicken wire work?
 
pollinator
Posts: 702
Location: Southern Oregon
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Pole beans are twiners, meaning that the stem, in this case, twines around the support, so the vertical support is the most important, horizontal supports are more for us, the trellis builders. One could just have single strands that each bean plant climbs. Many varieties of pole beans can grow much higher than 5 feet, I've had some that grown to 9-10 feet, they like going up.

I wouldn't recommend chicken wire for pole beans, it doesn't allow much for twining, and beans can grow into and/or around the wires making them difficult, if not impossible to harvest.
 
master pollinator
Posts: 8753
Location: Victoria British Columbia-Canada
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Chicken wire creates a big clean-up hassle at the end of the year because it's difficult to remove beans without really bending up the chicken wire. Bamboo, rattan or any other type of stick is stronger and holds its shape.

I don't like absolutely vertical sticks, because then the beans may hang in difficult ways for picking. If the poles are inclined at least 10 degrees, the beans tend to hang in a manner that makes them easier to find and harvest. I think that's why teepee and inverted V frame shapes are so popular. You step inside and the majority of the beans are easily identifiable since they hang below the support mechanism and most leaves are above.

Not every bean will hang down perfectly. And that's another reason wider spaced bamboo or other sticks work better. With chicken wire you have to remember where that stray bean is that's on the wrong side of the wire , because you can't immediately reach through it.

For those who must use wire I think the heavier pig wire is more suitable. It holds its shape and unless you have a giant hand , you can reach through it.
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