Garden Update | Growing Beans & Cucumbers in Containers

Bean on Pole 6-6-12
Last summer, I grew my cucumbers and beans in my raised bed. The cucumbers started off strong, but ended up succumbing to powdery mildew. And the beans–well, there was pretty much nothing left on the leaves after the beetles were done with them.

Cucumber in Container 6-6-12
This year, I’m growing some beans and one cucumber plant in the garden, but I’m also growing 8 bean plants and 2 cucumbers in containers on the screened porch. Each container is about 12 inches in circumference and about 12 inches deep too; I’m growing 4 bean plants in 2 pots (Dragon Tongue Bush Beans and Beurre De Rocquencourt Bush Wax Beans), while the cucumber plants (Dragon’s Egg Cucumbers) each have their own. I figured that the screen would keep the insects away from the beans and that the cucumbers would be less likely to get powdery mildew if they’re not crowded together on a trellis with the melons and squash.

As you can see in the first photo, the bean plants have flowered and are starting to produce some wee little bean babies. I was right in that the beans on the porch are faring much better than the ones outside. But…

Bean Leaves Turning Brown …the leaves aren’t looking so great. I can’t figure out what’s going on with them–I’ve read it can be too much water, too little water, too much heat. So, basically, it could be anything. Anything!

Dragon's Egg Cucumbers 6-6-12 The cucumbers are doing well. I tied together 3 poles to form a teepee that the vines can climb. In all 4 containers, I’ve used an organic soil specifically designed for container gardening and I’m fertilizing the cucumbers monthly. So far, I’m happy with the decision to use containers with these and I’m thinking that next year, I might grow all my beans in pots. Because this is what’s happening to the bean plants I have outside:

Cowpeas Eaten by Insects Something is really enjoying my Holstein Cowpeas.

As for everything else?

Petit Gris de Rennes Melon 6-6-12 I planted the Petit Gris de Rennes Melon in an Earthbox. Because clearly I don’t have enough raised beds and containers and whatnot.

Thai Basil Flowering The Thai basil that I bought at HerbFest is already flowering. Sigh. But hopefully it will go to seed and I’ll have lots of little Thai basil plants coming up soon.

Astro Arugula 6-6-12 Trying to grow Astro Arugula for the fourth time.

Tondo Scuro Squash 6-6-12 My Tondo Scuro De Piacenza Squash seedlings died on me twice, so this time I threw down a bunch of seeds and hoped for the best. I’m not thinning them until I’m sure they’ll survive!

White Scallop Squash 6-6-12 White Scallop Squash! I hope I get a lot of these because I have some recipe ideas already. I guess that falls under the category of counting your chickens before they hatch?

Little Finger Eggplants 6-6-12 Although something ate two of my Little Finger Eggplant seedlings, the ones that survived are looking nice and healthy.

Christmas Lima Beans 6-6-12 Christmas Lima Beans climbing the trellis.

Daylily 6-6-12 A daylily! I bought this plant on clearance at the nursery last summer. It was on its last leg, so I didn’t have too much hope for it, but it’s been blooming for the past few weeks.

How has your garden been doing? Have you gotten any vegetables yet? And are you growing anything in containers this year?

Kiersten Frase

About Kiersten

Kiersten is the founder and editor of Oh My Veggies. She loves cooking, trashy reality shows, and Hello Kitty. Kiersten also blogs about blogging at kierstenfrase.com.   Read more from Kiersten →

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Comments

  1. says

    Love that you’re doing container gardening AND that there are links to all of your other gardening posts below! I’m in a basement apartment so my only hope this summer is container gardening (I’m getting a late start) but I have yet to do it. This post is inspiring me! I have a serious black thumb, but figure I may as well start container before I ever get the chance to garden outside!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      If you Google growing veggies in containers, you can find lots of ideas–you can grow more things in containers that you’d think! In the past, I’ve done tomatoes, eggplant, and peppers and they all did well. If you want to start from seed, beans are a good bet–they grow pretty quickly. And if they’re going to be getting shade, greens & lettuce are easy to grow too!

  2. says

    Your luck with gardening continues to amaze me! We’re still having a hard time with our garden. Strawberry season is over and wasn’t quite as fruitful as we had hoped. But the big bummer is that the squash vine borers have returned so no more home grown squash again this year. A small victory is that our tomatoes and pepper plants really seem to be thriving this year so here’s to lots of homemade salsa and other tomato/pepper goodness!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      I think I’m lucky so far because the insects are just starting to be out and about. Let’s see if I’m so lucky at the end of the month. ;) I’m sorry you’re having issues with the vine borers–I am scared of those getting into my squash too! Last year I didn’t get any zucchini and I think I’ll cry if that happens again this year. :(

      Peppers are always so easy to grow! Do you like eggplant? If you do, you should try that too. Peppers and eggplant did the best for me last year.

      • says

        Well we were off to a good start and had a few good sizes zucchini and yellow squash going but rabbits or squirrels (both with confirmed sightings in our backyard and the squirrels also eat our tomatoes) made off with those and then the squash vine borers attacked. I’m so disappointed. I’ve tried to make myself and just don’t like eggplant and neither does my husband. We’ll probably just keep going with the peppers and tomatoes and I’d love to get some onions growing too (even though they’re a cool season crop) because we use so many of them.

        • Kiersten Frase says

          I have never seen a rabbit OR a squirrel anywhere around our house. And we live 2 houses away from the woods. I’m convinced that they don’t come around our street because there’s so much construction going on, but I bet when all the houses on our cul-de-sac are built, we’re going to have the same issue.

          Do you eat a lot of green onions? I just discovered that you can plant the ends of them in your garden and they’ll grow! So now whenever I make something with green onions, I go outside with the ends and pop them in the garden. Soon they’ll be tall enough that when I need green onions, I won’t have to buy them & can just cut what I need from the plants outside. :)

  3. says

    What gorgeous photos of your garden. I have a few plants in our very small garden, but I’m looking to add a few more in containers on our deck. I never thought to try cucumbers in a container. Adding it to my list of things to do this weekend!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      You can do regular cucumbers in a bigger container and I’ve heard the smaller cukes do well in containers about the size that I used. So fingers crossed it will work out! Homegrown cucumbers taste miles better than the store-bought ones. :)

    • Kiersten Frase says

      Ha! I’ve been there. I even had a community garden plot, but I still filled up the balcony. I think I had 4 containers of pattypan squash alone!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      Yes, you can do vine-y plants in pots! :D They’ll either climb out or climb up. And since mine are on our (fairly small) screened porch, I don’t have the room for them to grow out, so they’re growing up. :) You can train them as they grow. And you can also grow them in the garden like that too–like, instead of having a cucumber plant spread all over the place, you can grow it on a teepee or even a tomato cage.

  4. says

    I’m growing some stuff in pots also, just trying to figure out what grows best where and how to keep it away from the deer. I love your shots of the garden! Best wishes to both of us for this growing season!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      I kind of wondered if deer got into my garden & they’re responsible for my disappearing eggplants. We live a few houses away from the woods. Deer are awesome, but not so much when they’re eating our plants. :)

  5. says

    I am having trouble with my peppers, something is eating them! Whatever it is is ignoring the tomatoes and eggplant though, so it is not a total loss. I like your idea of putting the plants on a screened porch!

    • Kiersten Frase says

      You know, peppers are the one thing that nothing ever seems to touch in my garden. Last year my eggplant did pretty well too, but this year I had something that’s been stealing the plants whole!

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