Can I use innoculant after bush beans have sprouted?
Hello, I am growing bush beans this year for the first time. Prior to planting the seeds, I did not dust them with innoculant, nor did I sprinkle any innoculant in the soil as I planted them. Now - about 3 weeks later - they have sprouted and seem to be growing well. They are in a raised bed, with good sun exposure. But now that I am learning about innoculant after the fact, I ask whether it would provide any benefit at thus point to sprinkle some innoculant near the plants and work it into the soil. Now I understand that innoculant helps the bean roots to pull nitrogen from the air & fix it in the soil, I would like to maximize the advantage of growing beans in this bed to revitalize my soil. (This bed had tomatoes in it the previous two years and is bring rotated for beans this year.). If you're uncertsin about the benefit, then I ask: would it do any harm to do this? Thanks,
District of Columbia County District of Columbia
At this point, using the inoculant would be a waste of money but would not harm the plant. Inoculants are meant to be used when planting the seeds for a stronger root system. Since beans are legumes they will fix nitrogen once they establish a good root system; inoculation will speed the process. You do not have to use an inoculant.
See our bean profile for growing information http://extension.umd.edu/growit/vegetable-profiles-beans