Help with Germinating Beans

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by Gardener1, Jun 29, 2008.

  1. Gardener1

    Gardener1 Active Member

    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    surrey, canada
    Hello everyone,

    I am trying to germinate bean seeds that I harvested out of my own crop last year.... the quality of seeds is good, but as soon as they are soaked, within a day or so, a white filamentous, filmy fungus starts to grow on the seeds and the seeds go rotten...

    Can anyone suggest a solution....

    Thanks a lot
    G1
     
  2. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

    Messages:
    2,625
    Likes Received:
    95
    Location:
    Brantford,Ontario, Canada
    Break down and buy a package from a seed supplier. And DON't SOAK them. Beans will jump out of the soil if the temperature is high. I have had them up in two days after planting, and they got soaked (flooded) by a thunderstorm, then hot sun. Beans need heat, and in Zone 5, they should be planted about the 5 of June, but they will still produce as late as 15 of July.
     
  3. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    335
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    You could also give them a brief soak in a very weak bleach or hydrogen peroxide solution just before you plant them. This is standard practice in germinating brugmansias, for instance:
    Well, i don't know if it helps seedlings break through the seed coat, but I do know that soaking seeds in a 3% solution of hydrogen peroxide for 10-30 minutes, followed by at least 10 rinses in clean water will kill any pathogen growing on the outside of the seed. Germination appears increase after this sterilization because some seeds get attacked by pests as soon as germination begins and the embryo is destroyed before it even emerges from the soil. This is routinely done in plant research laboratories to prevent powdery mildew, mold etc. It also prevents damping off. You can also use a 3% solution of bleach, as long as the hypochlorite level is low: javex is an excellent brand. The cheaper bleaches are not as pure and won't have the same effect. As for the hydrogen peroxide, I'd recommend using a food grade solution.


    Beans aren't normally soaked before planting as they are so vigourous anyway. Do your saved seed beans germinate properly if just planted up in soil/seed starter?
     
  4. Gardener1

    Gardener1 Active Member

    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    surrey, canada
    Westernwilson,
    Many Thanks for the insight...
    They have the same problem regardless of the medium...
    I have a philosophy... a motto... a mantra if you will... for any garden to be a good success, the cost of growng the produce should be less than the cost at the supermarket.... Then and only then it is worth the effort, otherwise, might as well go to the market... In these days of expensive seeds, I would still want to try out your advice to see if this makes a difference. Thanks a lot
    G1
     
  5. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

    Messages:
    2,625
    Likes Received:
    95
    Location:
    Brantford,Ontario, Canada
    One outing to a junk food place, will more than equal the cost of all the required seed for a typical home garden. Seldom is a small home garden cultivated with the aim of meeting your philosophical musing. Economics is the last consideration for growing a home garden.
     
  6. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    335
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    Two things:

    First, on the seed beans. It sounds to me that the beans are not being harvested and/or stored properly and are not "live" by the time you plant them. Review your practices because beans truly are one of the easiest seeds to save. They have to be totally ripe and then stored cool and dry.

    Second, the main benefits of home grown vegetables are not economic. Veg are a fun technical challenge, but my main reason for growing is the end result: superior produce. Here in Vancouver, as in most of Canada, it is virtually IMPOSSIBLE to buy great produce in the grocer's, and true farmer's markets or roadside farm stands are rare as hen's teeth.

    For instance, we have just had strawberry season. The only local berries in the local grocer's (and here in Tsawwassen, we have large berry farms) were tired and old, even late in the season, when the better berries came along here this year. I have never seen a tasty tomato at any time of the year, certainly not one that you can slice, salt, pepper and savour. We only get great corn because somebody from the Fraser Valley sends his girls in a truck to sell by the road on Arthur Drive, outside Ladner. No one plants fruit trees any more...except eccentric home gardeners like me (two pears, and racking my brains for where to put cherries and an apple...).

    And on the topic of home grown produce, mine is reliably pesticide, herbicide, and preservative free.

    Having grown up in a rural community, I know what fresh, good vegetables look and taste like. And everyone had a vegetable patch and canned their own. I have a yen to retire to a small acreage where I can have my greenhouse and big vegetable patch and flowerbeds, and a small orchard. It will cost a fortune! But the benefits go way beyond the economic.

    Incidentally, as gas prices drive up the cost of trucked goods, veg are going to skyrocket in price, as most farm stuff floats on a sea of oil (fertilizer, pesticides, machine handling). I hope we get back to the small, local market garden supply chain, preferably organic.
     
  7. Acoma

    Acoma Active Member

    Messages:
    177
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Reno, Nevada Zone 6A
    I agree with Durgan and Wilson whole heartedly (though it may not count for much). One should not look at the economics as the driving force of a garden, it should be for the art of growing, like hiking, art, whatever the hobby. Maybe you have children, and the children see the rewards of diligent work, and the taistes coming from that. The family and friends get to enjoy the rewards of best taisting, fresh flavored fruit and vegetables. For me, it is great to see my little girls interesting in the gardening, and constant taisting of the (sometimes) ready foods. You live only one time, remembering the joys of gardening reward you and others more than time and dollars. Each year of gardening on small or large scale in the back yard becomes more efficient, more enjoyable, more challenging to do better. Sorry for rattling, I do hope you dive into this challenge and reap the rewards throughout the season.
     
  8. Gardener1

    Gardener1 Active Member

    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    surrey, canada

    Westernwilson,
    Thanks a lot again, I had allowed the beans to mature on the plant till it died in the winter and then harvested the beans a few months later before the spring thaw... the seeds were shiny and fat and the cotyledons were full of nutrient....

    Many germinate well and I already have lots growing for the summer but there is many that get the filmy wisps... I will try your suggestion with bleach and see... Thanks again for your help

    G1
     
  9. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

    Messages:
    335
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Tsawwassen, BC, Canada
    If many germinate well, you do not have a problem! I think you will always find a certain percentage of non-germinators in any lot of seed.

    It may also be that you are getting good looking but non-live seed because some of those beans froze. When I keep seed beans I harvest the fully ripe seed before the frosts come.
     
  10. anituchka

    anituchka Active Member

    Messages:
    61
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Canada
    WesternWilson,
    I totally agree with you!
     

Share This Page