Some people think they don't like broad beans, but I have converted several non-believers! One trick is to boil them slightly, remove the skins (ha - yes not everyone tells you this), and then put them in a fresh tagliatelle with some pecorrino cheese. Yum. Anyway - I digress. We need to learn how to grow them first. Eating comes later!
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I've actually only just grown my first batch of broad beans, so can tell you that all this comes straight from the horses mouth. I went for a dwarf variety 'The Sutton' , and planted them in the Autumn, but apparently you can plant them at several different times of the year. I simply did the dwarf variety to save space. But in fact - they seem pretty big to me! The photos above are really of my first harvest. I feel quite proud of them. If you're new to veg growing, hopefully the details below will help you and you will have a luscious first harvest like I have.
When to Sow:
You can sow in November, which I found quite cheery as it's such a bleak time of year. It was good getting them in knowing a nice surprise would come early in the Spring. I have just harvested (so early June). You can also sow in February, March or May. And then you harvest later. They're quite hardy and versatile as veg go - though if you're in very cold areas, protect with fleece or cloches.
How to Sow:
Plant 2 inches (5cm) deep in drills about 3 inches (8cm) apart and put a few beans in between the rows to use later if necessary. I have 3 rows in a 4 foot (1.2m) wide bed.
Be prepared for mice, wet, birds, broad bean weevil (evil weevils) if you sow in Autumn especially (though I had no problems on my first attempt).
Some Varieties we recomend: