Growing Lima Beans in Containers - Knowledgebase Question

lagrange park, IL
Avatar for smile357
Question by smile357
November 13, 1997
What are optimal conditions for lima beans grown indoors in containers?

Answer from NGA
November 13, 1997
Bush Lima beans grow up to 2 feet tall and 18" wide, so each plant needs a lot of space to grow well. Give each plant a pot 12" deep and 10" across. Soak seeds in water for a few hours before planting, and put several seeds in each pot. Thin out all but the strongest seedling. To get them to sprout, keep them in a warm place (75F), and keep flourescent light within an inch of the growing seedling.

Limas need a long day of full sun to produce pods - If you don't have a south-facingwindow that gets 8-12 hours of direct sunlight per day, they'll need some kind of artificial light source. Sodium or Halide lights are the closest substitutes for sunlight - they're available mail order from Gardener's Supply Co. ( or ph# 800/863-1700) - they cost quite a bit per square foot of growing space, so you'll have to determine if it's worth the investment to have home-grown limas!

A pre-mixed, liquid "vegetable fertilizer" is will be good for your limas. You can use a very dilute amount each time you water the plants, or dose them about once per month (Gardener's Supply has one). The soil should never dry out, but it shouldn't be too wet, or the roots will rot. Enjoy!

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