Whether you have a large plot or you grow your vegetables in pots and containers, peas and beans are a 'must have'. I think there is nothing better than going out to pick and eat fresh peas and beans right off the vine. You can sow peas anytime between August and December, with beans you can sow right into February. Most peas and beans will germinate with-in 7-10 days of sowing and will mature between 60-90 days, some will mature even faster.
Dwarf varieties are available in both peas and beans making them an ideal choice for growing in pots and containers. My favourite dwarf pea is 'Massey', which doesn't require staking and matures in only 65 days. It produces a prolific crop on a small plant.
There are three great dwarf varieties of beans, the smallest of which is 'Dwarf Baby Bush', the plant grows to only 300 mm tall but still produces 100 mm pods - amazing. ‘Dwarf Yellow Butter’ is one of my favourites because it produces an amazingly delicious yellow beans which have a melt in the mouth sensation. Finally 'Dwarf Tendergreen' is stringless and very tender - a real winner in my book.
The climbing varieties produce massive crops on vigorous plants. Beans come in a range of colours, green, yellow, red and even purple. Whether you plant in the garden or containers, try using an obelisk, a very attractive yet practical feature.
The best advice I can give you for growing these is to prepare the soil well and provide good support for the plants. Before sowing or planting dig in a good amount of 'Oderings Shrub & Tub' and set up the frame-work for the plant to grow on. All climbing beans will naturally wrap around and climb up your structure, but make sure it is low enough to get them started. Once they are hooked on they will do their own thing with little assistance from you. Halfway through the growing season feed you beans and peas with 'Oderings Total Replenish' or a good general fertiliser to extend their production.
Children enjoy growing peas and beans because you can see results and reap the rewards relatively quickly. For the kids, try growing 'Sugar Snap' peas or 'Snow' peas. These are juicy and can be eaten pod and all fresh or put in stir-fries' and other dishes.