Beans are inexpensive to start and simple to grow and maintain, making them the perfect lush garden plant to create a teepee. Bean pole teepees make amazing hidden forts and play areas for the kids or are a unique landscape feature to have in your garden. As an added bonus, beans are delicious, nutritious, and easy to harvest. You can also use ivy or flowering vines for this project, as well. Grow your own bean pole teepee using these simple steps.
Step 1: Choose Your Spot
Pick an area for your bean pole teepee that has plenty of space. Bean plants grow quickly and easily, and can sometimes spread out along the ground surrounding the supports of the teepee. Leave plenty of space between the beans and other plants in your garden. Using a pole, draw a circle in the dirt that is 3-5 feet wide. This will be the base of your teepee.
Step 2: Stake Your Poles
Use the circle you just drew as your guide for positioning the poles. Make sure to leave a larger space between the two “front” poles in order to form a doorway into the teepee. Push each pole into the ground about 6-8 inches deep at an angle so the tops of the poles almost meet in the center of the circle. This will ensure that the poles will not come dislodged due to weather, animals, or kids playing in or near the teepee.
Place two poles where the back of your teepee will be, about a foot from each other. Place the two middle poles straight across from each other at the widest part of your circle. The two front poles should be about two feet away from each other, but evenly spaced from the center poles.
Step 3: Tie the Top
Once the poles are sturdily in the ground, use your twine to tie the poles together at the top of the teepee. Create an “X” with the two front poles, then tie them together tightly by wrapping the twine around them several times where they meet. Tie knots tightly to secure the twine. Make sure the poles cannot come loose. Do the same by making an “X” with the two center poles, then with the two back poles.
Step 4: Secure the Top
Hold all three “X’s” together and wrap the twine around them tightly, tying knots with every few wraps. Ensure that all six tepee poles are securely tied together without wiggle room, and that the poles are pushed deep enough into the ground so that they don’t come out.
Step 5: Plant the Beans
Use the shovel to loosen the dirt where the inside of the teepee will be and around the outside. Use this loose dirt to create a small, circular mound of dirt around the base of your teepee, where you drew your circle earlier. Plant 2 or 3 bean seeds around each of your poles, in order to make sure you get at least one healthy, thriving plant for each pole. You can remove any plants you’d like at a later time.
Step 6: Care and Maintenance
Bean plants do not require much water, especially after they germinate and become seedlings. Lightly water the seeds every day until they sprout, and then only water the plants about once a week. If you live in an area with plenty of rain, additional watering may not be required.
As the plants begin to grow, wrap them around the poles to train them to grow upwards. If needed, you can tie them loosely to the bottom of the poles. You should have a thriving bean pole teepee in 2 to 3 months.