Beans are a most popular crop, second to tomatoes. They are relatively easy to grow, and when planted in rich, well-draining soil and given lots of sun, they will reward you with a bountiful harvest. There are many varieties of labeled bean seed, and the packages have plenty of specific information such as days to harvest, flavor and texture of the beans, so it is easy to find the type best for you.
Select either bush beans or pole beans (the label will tell you which you have). These two categories of beans grow differently. Most varieties of green beans, however, do best when sown directly into the ground after any chance of overnight frost is over.
Choose a sunny location in your garden to plant bean seeds. The soil should be tilled and drain well; beans do not do well in clay-like soil.
Feed beans in the ground well, as they like a lot of food. Till good compost into the soil before sowing labeled bean seeds. If you don't compost yourself, get some bags of organic compost and extra topsoil at your local gardening supply store. Mix the two and till into the soil.
Push bush green bean seeds into the ground one inch, while wearing gardening gloves. Sow like this in a row with each seed one or two inches apart. Start a second row two feet away from the first row. Thin the bush beans after they have reached at least three inches in height. To thin them, dig up every other plant and transplant so that all of the beans in a row are up to four inches apart.
Form little mounds of dirt with a small shovel in which to sow pole beans. Mounds in a row should be three feet apart, and rows should also be at least three feet apart. Push a stake (at least six feet tall) into the mound. Push four pole bean seeds into the mound around the stake. Water well.
Harvest green beans as soon as they reach full size. A long, skinny green bean is ready to harvest. If you wait for the beans to get fat, you will have tough, bitter-tasting green beans. Also, green bean plants will continue to offer more green beans while being harvested, so check them every other day.