Beanpoles need to be a least 8ft tall and straight without any major kinks or side branches. Some gardeners prefer a slight bend in the beanpole which helps create an arch to their beanpole structure.
Ideas on the diameter of the rod varies. Small diameter rods are easier to transport and erect while thicker rods will last longer and can be used over several seasons but beanpoles over 50mm at the base can be difficult to push into the ground.
All beanpoles become brittle with age and as with all untreated wood will begin to decay. After use beanpoles should be cleaned and stored in a dry place and they should be expected to last for up to 5 years. Many gardeners believe that beanpole rods are better for growing beans as they allow the beans to grip and climb more easily.
Beanpoles are normally sold in bundles of 11, allowing for the erection of a standard ‘runner-bean tripod’ of 5 each side and one on top to tie together. To find out where to buy your coppiced beanpoles and other coppice wood products, you can find a listing of suppliers in the directory section of the www.coppice-products.co.uk website. Or try the supplier directory on the Allotment Forestry website at: http://www.allotmentforestry.com/directnew.htm.