Do you have green bean plants with flowers all over but the plant isn’t producing bean pods? It seems just about every year we go through this in our own garden and I am sitting there asking myself why our green bean plants are not producing. There can be several reasons this happens. Some things that cause this you can help your plants out with, but other reasons they aren’t producing bean pods you may just have to wait for mother nature to do her thing.
Why Green Bean Plants Have Flowers But Aren’t Producing
If your green bean plants have flowers but have not been getting any bean pods on the plant, there are a few reasons this could be happening.
You Need To Wait Longer
Many times when you aren’t seeing pods developing on your green bean plants it is because you just need a bit more patience.
The type of green bean plant you have will dictate when they produce. Often gardeners have planted pole beans instead of bush beans. Pole beans require more time to produce than bush beans do, sometimes up to 2 weeks longer.
Temperatures Are Too Hot
The most common reason that growers don’t have producing green bean plants is that it is too hot. While they are a warm weather crop, once the temperature rises during the summer months bean plants will not produce pods, just flowers.
This is the reason two years in a row that our own bean plants didn’t produce pods in the given harvest time. Heat waves always seem to stall our bean plants. Once the temperature dropped back down though, within a week we had tons of green bean pods ready to pick.
Too Much Fertilizer or the Wrong Type of Fertilizer
Is there such a thing as too much fertilizer? When it comes to green bean plants, yes.
It could also be that you are using the wrong type of fertilizer. Many standard garden fertilizers have an even amount of NPK values, 10-10-10 or 20-20-20. Green beans however should have a fertilizer that has a lower amount of nitrogen. Too much nitrogen added to the soil can cause the plant to grow great, but it will not fruit (aka make bean pods). Use a phosphorus (P) heavy fertilizer for green beans.
Uneven Soil Moisture and No Mulch
If the soil moisture levels go from very wet to very dry, this can affect the production of green bean plants. It is especially important for the soil moisture levels to be higher during and after bloom for green bean plants.
It is a good idea to use something such as mulch to help keep the soil moisture levels at more even levels.
If you use companion planting for green beans, planting the wrong crops near them can cause stunted growth in your bean plants. Don’t plant onions, garlic, or anything from the allium family near your beans. Marigolds can also cause issues with bean plant growth. Sunflowers can stunt the growth pole beans.
Pollinators Are Not An Issue
The flowers on green bean plants are self-pollinating, so a lack of pollinators is not a reason that you do not get any bean pods on the plant.
- How to Grow Green Beans; Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service; https://cdn-ext.agnet.tamu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/how-to-grow-green-beans.pdf
- Green Beans: How to Grow It; South Dakota State University; https://extension.sdstate.edu/green-beans-how-grow-it
- Chapter 4: Legumes and Some Relatives; University of North Texas; https://cybercemetery.unt.edu/archive/allcollections/20090116184345/http://www.beeculture.com/content/pollination_handbook/beans.html