Trade Secret: Fava Beans

Fava beans keep a healthy rose garden...

Are you a rose grower?


Here's a quick tip for any rose lover/grower:

Roses love well draining, humus rich soil, with plenty of sun and consistent water. They thrive in both containers and in ground, and there is a rose for almost any type of garden.

On the coast, it can be hard to keep your roses happy. It usually comes down to just two elements: placement and variety of rose. For example, 'Iceburg' is a rose that grows great here on the coast - where as certain hybrid tea roses are a bit trickier.

If you love growing roses and want to get better blooms and healthier plants - try seeding some fava beans around each rose. Simply plant two seeds on 3 sides of the plant (about 15" away from the base) and water in well. After 2 weeks they will germinate and sprout up pale green shoots. This is an exceptionally easy annual veggie to grow, and will not crowd out your roses.

Fava beans are "nitrogen-fixing" plants, and will help improve the soil around your roses. Once the beans get about knee-high, clip back the tops and let the foliage fall to the ground. After a few months of clipping the favas, you can pull them out and leave the plant, roots, clippings and all around the drip-line of the rose. This will help with improving the soil by adding nitrogen and air.  

To find fava bean seeds, go to on Main Street — or email me: jenn@wildflowerfarms.org

Need other helpful tips for your garden? Why not book a garden consultation?


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