How to Manage Pests

Pests in Gardens and Landscapes

Harvesting and storing beans

Beans set fruit and ripen in stages over a period of time, depending upon the variety. Pole beans tend to crop longer than bush beans. Bush beans have a flush of beans over a 2-week period and then die out. Successive plantings every two weeks will allow for a continuous harvest. Beans should be harvested on a regular basis. The more you pick, the more crop you will have. With round-pod varieties, pick just as soon as the beans have plumped out. Avoid leaving beans on the plant for too long, as they will become tough.

The beans can be eaten fresh in the pod or shelled and left to dry. Fresh snap beans are excellent for freezing and pickling. Dried beans can be stored for long periods as long as the storage conditions remain dry.

Recommended harvesting times for parts of California*

North and North Coast
Monterey Cunty north
July–Oct.
South Coast
San Luis Obispo
Late May–Nov.
Interior Valleys
Sacramento, San Joaquin and similar valleys
June–July
Sept.–Nov.
Desert Valleys
Imperial and Coachella valleys
March–May
November

*For other areas, contact your local Master Gardener


Statewide IPM Program, Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California
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