Sow climbing bean seeds indoors from mid April for transplanting from late May, or direct sow outdoors from late May to July.
Indoors, sow bean seeds at a depth of 4cm (1.5″) in 7.5cm (3″) pots or trays of free-draining, seed sowing compost. Place in a propagator or seal container inside a plastic bag at a temperature of 12-25C (54-77F) until germination, which takes 7-10 days. Do not exclude light as this helps germination. Once germinated, grow on in cooler conditions until all risk of frost has passed and the climbing bean plants are large enough to be transplanted. Gradually acclimatise them to outdoor conditions over 7 – 10 days before planting French beans outdoors in rich fertile, well drained soil in full sun with protection from strong winds.
Alternatively direct sow French beans outdoors when the soil has warmed. Sow 2 bean seeds per station at a depth of 4cm (2″) and a distance of 23cm (9″) apart. Plant Climbing beans in rows that are 60cm (24″) apart, or where space is limited, try growing climbing beans onto a 1.5wigwam structure. Climbing beans require support from garden canes, strings or netting which should be put in place at the time of planting.