Runner Bean ‘Hestia’

Family: Fabaceae

‘Hestia’ is a dwarf runner bean.  Due to its small size, ‘Hestia’ is a superb choice of plant to grow in containers.  I’ve found that the height of ‘Hestia’ runner beans varies depending on the compost or soil they are growing in and the size of the container used.  Sometimes these plants appreciate a short wigwam of bamboo canes to tentatively climb or some short pea sticks to direct the plants upwards and prevent the plants from spreading out sideways too waywardly, but more often than not, no support is necessary and ‘Hestia’ runner bean plants will happily grow without any supports.  I’d say the smallest ‘Hestia’ runner bean plants I’ve grown have been around around 45cm (18″) tall and around the same wide – as in a container you’re growing a group of plants and you’ll find some plants in the pot growing skywards and the others growing off out to the side!

‘Hestia’ runner beans have very pretty red and white flowers that are pollinated by bees.  Their runner beans are green in colour.  This variety can be surprisingly productive when seeds are sown at the optimum time.  Late-sown plants are usually a disappointment, so don’t be tempted to sow ‘Hestia’ seeds in July or August, as there won’t be time for the plants to reach productivity.

In the UK, ‘Hestia’ runner beans seeds can be sown outdoors from the start of May through until the end of June.  You could start your plants off earlier by growing them in a greenhouse or conservatory, but it’s easiest just to sow your runner bean seeds directly where you want your plants to grow.  If you live in Northern regions or cold areas, sow your seeds before the middle of June to give your runner bean plants sufficient time to grow, flower, and produce a harvest before the cold weather arrives and the plants fade.

These plants must be grown in a bright and sunny location.  Runner beans simply won’t grow in the shade.  ‘Hestia’ runner beans thrive in peat-free compost.

Runner bean ‘Hestia’ has red and white bicoloured flowers.

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