Organic Kitchen Gardening and my personal musings

This blog is about my experiments with Organic Kitchen Gardening and sometimes about other personal experiences of my life… Please leave a comment about anything that touched you. Comments help to keep the blogger motivated to keep blogging :)

Growing Rajma/Red Beans May 31, 2010

Filed under: Organic Farming and Kitchen Garden — rajapanda @ 2:28 pm
Tags: ,

Yup, you heard it right. I grew Rajma this time.

I had picked up a packet of red beans seeds from the last Namma Santhe, just out of curiosity and my love for legumes and creepers, which is what this variety of read beans . Little did I knew that red beans is just another name for what are more commonly known as kidney beans or locally known as Rajma.

The seeds are of Nati variety and a tad smaller size compared to what we get in shops.

I seed started on March 14th. The regular process i follow is, one night of soaking in water followed by discarding the ones which do not bloat probably indicating poor seeds and am all set to seed start.
The medium is a mix of coco-peat and compost. Mostly in 60:40 ratio. Adding compost to the seed starting mix keeps me bother free on the nutrient requirement of the seedlings even if they were to grow in the small plastic cups for little longer.

On the 2nd day after seed starting 80% of seeds had already germinated and were showing up the cotyledons.
Here is a pic on 21st of March, thats just 7 days from seed starting. They are already big enough to be transplanted to soil or bigger pots depending on what one choses.

rajma seedlings 7 days old

The seedlings the above pic are probably little bit taller than what would be considered as ready for transplant stage and that’s because they were in a shaded place all the while and were looking for sunlight making them taller than usual.

Transplanting is pretty easy and neat if you are seed starting in a cup of this size. Make space roughly of the size of cup in the growing medium.


a gentle tap or two at the bottom of the glass after inverting it and the seedling will be out in your hand with all the root intact and unaffected.

transplanting -2

Put the seedling in the hole and fill soil.

transplanting -3

April 5th (21st Day). The seedlings have now grown and are looking for support. So, here is the trellis. The small bamboo poles used for trellis are available with most of the bamboo sellers int the town. I bought these from Madiwala market. I also tied up small cotton strings from the poles to the base of individual plant, just to guide them onto the trellis.

trellis made of bamboo poles

April 8th: The plant has already found the way to climb up the trellis.

on the trellis

April 22nd (38th day); plant at it’s best and has already climbed a height of 6 ft.

red beans

Now nowhere to go it starts it journey downwards and stops growing further. I get a sense if the trellis was longer or if there was something it could have climbed on the plant would have grown longer and robust.

In between 38th day and 76th day i.e., it flowered and the beans started appearing all over the plant.

Here is the harvest on 30th May. They beans were left to dry up on the plant. In the picture right you can see the various stage of growth of the beans: the white one on the right top is from from the green beans, the pinkish ones on the left of the white are little riper, then on the bottom are the mature ones but yet to dry up and on the plate you see the dried ones. Looks like very little harvest, right ? Well it is, but we soaked them overnight before making curry and they made for one nice curry serving for two of us.

rajma harvest

harvest - 2

rajma after one of soaking

In the meanwhile my papaya plant has been very kind to me and is steadily gaining stardom in our apartment as one of the sweetest people have ever tasted. I have harvested almost 40-50 of them in the past 5 months. One more good news is we are kind of self sufficient in veggies for almost past 2 month’s now, buying only potato,Onion,Garlic and ginger from outside. There is Okra, Brinjal, Round radish, Chilli, Bitter gourd, cucumber, methi greens, mint, lettuce, indian spinach, spinach, sweet pepper, coriander, string less beans, capsicum, tomato,carrot all growing very nicely and giving us a steady harvest for the last 2 month’s. But winter has already set in for our kitchen garden and there is less sun these days(only 30% of the space gets sunlight). It will remain like this for the next 4 month’s 😦


papaya - 2


32 Responses to “Growing Rajma/Red Beans”

  1. Satya Says:

    Hmm. Ek teer do sikar..Good food and savings in buying vegetables, petrol and time. What is the plan for growing rice… So we can have home grown rajma chawal

    • rajapanda Says:

      Very aptly put – “savings in buying vegetables, petrol and time”
      Apart from the quality food, it also takes care of my physical exercise to a certain extent.

      It’s a long time dream… to be able to someday experiment growing rice, maybe Basmati… let’s hope for the best 🙂


    • Chandra sekhar Says:

      Hi ,

      can you please mail me your mail ID . Mine is I want to know more about Rajma. I want to know where can I get Rajma seeds ? what are the verieties available in market ?

  2. Wow.
    I planted french beans last year directly into the soil. Initial photographs reminded me of same.
    But my DH transplanted them to different location and all died 😦
    Congrats for having a self grown food.. i am envying u and happy for u.. 🙂

    • rajapanda Says:

      Thanks Dear. Normally while transplanting it’s very important to take care not to disturb the roots of the plant.
      Also few precautions which i take are:
      1. transplant on not so hot days, try to do it in the evening if possible.
      2. If you see that sun is too harsh on the plant after transplant and plant is starting to wilt, try to give it shade either by moving it to a shady place.

      I use a shade net to cover the plants for initial 2-3 days after transplant. You can see the shade net in the background on the 7th photo from top.


  3. Sumathy Says:

    Hi Raj,

    WOW, great effort. Well documented, thanks for sharing it. Yes, you have flowers, vegitables, fruits, and only rice is remaining to be completly self sufficient :-), am sure your dream of Basmati chawal will come true. All the best.


    • rajapanda Says:

      Thanks for your good wishes Sumathi,

      Growing Basmati rice in an urban flat will surely be a nice experiment. Let’s see when i can realize this dream 🙂


  4. GoodEarth Says:

    HI Raj,
    A post from you after ages!! this is surely a treat 🙂
    your garden looks eye-catching as always. the small capsicum in one of the pics… looks so beautiful and so does the papaya!

    Congratulations on the harvest of rajma and three cheers for realizing your dream! Growing rice is a great challenge indeed. wish you good luck on the same!

    btw, i have a question for you at:
    eagerly awaiting your response 😉

    • rajapanda Says:

      Hi GoodEarth,

      Thanks. Of late work has been keeping me really busy,you know how it is for us software people!

      Hope to be more regular in blog posts this month 🙂

      Have replied to your question in that thread, hope it helps.


      • coco peat fans are really trying thier best methods of cultivation soon we will have a web site to share the experiences of coco peat.we are the manufactures of coco peat and having coco peat beds in 50 acres of .we are ready to ship u even one 5kgs blok of a briq any where in this world.we want to see that all should start using coco peat.dont worry about quantity we have large qty since large number coco peat manufactures are entering the trade.take action for using coco peat.benlion is having a secret of technology which you will know when u use the product.any where in the world we will take pains to send even 1block of 5kgs.

  5. Natti Says:

    You live in an apartment? Wow how do you get so much space to plant all these vegetables and stuff. Nice blog btw.

    • rajapanda Says:

      Hi Natti,

      Thanks. My flat has a small private garden attached. It was part of the deal 🙂
      Lucky in a way. But i also use containers for growing veggies and have long term of being self sustained in veggies.


  6. Natti Says:

    Is there any way I can get in touch with you. Email etc. I live in an apartment with balconies. Trying to get into gardening. I am amazed at what we can achieve using containers.


  7. Geetha Says:

    Hi Raj,
    Thanks so much info you are providing through your blog.
    It’s very educative and a good motivator for me. Could you please answer my below Qs on Panchgavya?

    1. Do you use panchgavya on the plants during all phases of the plant?
    2. My tomoto plant has borne lot of flowers and fruits but the size of the fruit when it matures is very small. Is it ok if the solution gets sprayed on the fruits and flowers also?
    3. Similarly my beans plant has started yielding and When I spray, I am sure it gets sprayed all over. Is it ok if it gets sprayed on the vegitable also.
    4. How do you maintain the solution. Do you stir it often?
    5. Lastly, when or how often do you feed the soil with 3% panchagavya? I suppose when we can not spray, we can feed it though water?

    Sorry, it is long list. My plant yield is less and hence this list of Qs.
    I grow all plants in containers using cocopeat and home made compost, farm copost and little recycled soil.
    Some times I also give liquid compost. For that I soak the compost in water for a day or two and feed them to plant with further(50%) dilution. Please let me know if I am missing any constituent here for container plants


  8. K. Meena Says:

    Hi Raj:

    Thanks for the very informative post. I never thought rajma beans can be grown at home. I will try this.

    A few queries:

    1. Can we use the rajma seeds we get from stores directly?
    2. Can we do without transplantation?

    I am really happy to read this post as my attempt in growing hybrid bean variety (it was called ‘zebra beans’) , whose seeds were got from DOH, failed completely. I sowed 6 seeds , all germinated, the creepers grew and grew for 3 months, there was no sign of pod formation. A few flowers and one or two pods, that’s all. But , the growth of the creepers was very thick and dense. With a heavy heart, I removed the plants , after waiting for 4 months.

    Meena K

  9. arjun Says:

    its heartening to read. wish everyone should try home gardening.
    esp. the papaya was excellent. we always have a sense of pride
    you know when you eat from your own garden..nothing could match that feel..
    keep going .. all the best..


  10. interesting. i soaked some rajma today and was planning to grow it once it sprouts….was looking for tips online and came across your website….very nice

  11. himanshi malik Says:

    it’s interesting

  12. himanshi malik Says:

    it is a good method

  13. sk Says:

    inspiring and beautiful.

  14. Dr P K Misra Says:

    your project on organic farming of rajma, tomato and papaya have excellent practical knowledge. keep it up my dear.

  15. Mir Tabassum Says:

    I loved your information about rajma. I soaked some rajma seeds and gotng to plant it tomorrow.

  16. venkatesh Says:

    It is very nice
    I want to start cultivate this rajma in a big way
    Kindly tell me what is d water source and
    Wt type of land is required

  17. anu Says:

    really interesting

  18. himangi Says:

    it was awesome

  19. sai Says:

    wow to your veg garden…. i wish to put up something like that. By the way I have just 2 days back out of curiosity, used those little longer Rajma beans from kitchen directly in soil . It is red clay soil here . To my love for them they have germinated and little shoots are out . I was wondering if these are going to be creepers too ? Would you know ? I need to be prepared for the bamboos just in case ..

  20. Uttam Says:

    Tried to grow the large rajma bean in Pune.., it germinates and ( immediately transplanted) grows to about a foot in height and dies 😦

  21. Amby Says:

    Okay why should I mince words, I’m green with jealousy 😦
    Really impressed on the other hand. Superb effort.
    Incidentally two rajma plants have cropped up in my lawn. After seeing your post I’ve decided to give them some support. Thanks for the guidance. Good luck



  23. Gurkirat Says:

    great work, it really look lot of effort from your side and helping th students a lot in their this project done. Hatsoff to you

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