How to Grow Pinto Beans? The Best Way to Plant and Take Care of This Legume in 2023

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how to grow pinto beans

Pinto beans are a staple of the American diet, and for a good reason. They’re versatile, delicious, and easy to prepare. If you’re looking for a new way to cook up your favorite bean, try growing them yourself!

Growing pinto beans is a great way to save money on groceries and connect with nature. In this article, we’ll show you how to grow pinto beans from seed through harvest.

Before learning how to grow pinto beans, learn more about this food!

Pinto beans are a wonderful source of protein, fiber, and other nutrients. They’re also incredibly versatile. You can use them in the following dishes.

  • Soups
  • Stews
  • Salads
  • Dips
  • Side dish

In addition to being delicious and nutritious, pinto beans are also easy to cook. All you need is water, some spices, or no spices. You can make them into a simple soup by adding salt and pepper or other herbs or spices you like. Or add a bit of rice to make it more like an entrée dish. You can even throw them in the slow cooker with some tomatoes and chicken broth for a hearty chili!

No matter how you cook them up, pinto beans are sure to be your new favorite way to get your protein fix while staying healthy!

How to grow pinto beans directly in the soil?

We recommend planting pinto beans directly in the soil and avoiding growing them indoors. So, if you have space and seeds, here’s what you need to do.

  • Select a spot where there are no rough winds and legumes have not been planted in the past three rotations.
  • Before planting, ensure that the soil has already reached 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Plant the seeds directly in the soil 1-2 inches deep and the eye facing down.
  • Ensure that there are 4-6 inches apart in 21-30 inch rows.

Note: If you can treat your seeds with specific bacteria when planting, that would be better. Here’s how to do it.

  • On the same day of planting, just presoak your seeds, roll them in, and sprinkle inoculant into the soil when sowing.

How to care for your pinto beans?

Pinto beans are one of those low-maintenance crops. However, you must monitor them regularly if pests or water stagnate around their roots.

Here are the different conditions that you need to know when learning how to grow pinto beans.


If you have shallow soil made of clary or hardpan, you should not overwater your pinto beans. You can just water them every day through the vegetative and flowering phases. Once the bean pods start to fill out, the beans will no longer accept water. 

Avoid overhead watering at nighttime because moisture can accumulate on the beans’ leaves and cause diseases.

Light, Soil, and Nutrients

Ensure that your pinto beans get full sunlight. In terms of soil, do not plant them on soil that is:

  • Rich in phosphorus
  • Lacking in iron
  • With notable slope
  • Poor drainage

Temperature and Humidity

Pinto beans aren’t frost-tolerant, and a warm temperature is essential for germination. If the weather is too hot, it could cause stunted development.

What pinto bean varieties can you plant?

There are four pinto bean varieties available out there such as:

  • Determinate Bush Varietals
  • Upright Indeterminate
  • Climbing Indeterminate
  • Prostrate Indeterminate

“Indeterminate” means tomato varieties but applies to beans.

  • Determinate those plants that bloom and fruit consecutively, and you’re done.
  • Indeterminate is those plants that continue to bloom while their fruit is in the process of ripening.

What should you plant?

You can plant and grow determinate plants because it is more efficient. But if you want a longer fruiting season and achieve a higher yield, choose indeterminate plants.

Here are two pinto bean varieties you can plant.

Alubia Pinta Alavesa

These are dark red speckled pinto beans. This variety has a buttery texture and originally came from the Basque country. 

Hopi Black

If you have dry land, this variety is an excellent choice. It has colorful bean pods that have highlights of black and cream. People have been growing and harvesting it in northern Arizona for centuries.

Challenges on how to grow pinto beans

1. Diseases

Pinto beans can be affected by various diseases, including the following.

Bacterial blight

This disease causes dark spots on leaves and stems and wilting and yellowing leaves on affected plants. You should avoid planting your next crop too close to where you planted your last crop. In this way, you don’t have any overlapping timeframes when bacteria could spread from one plant to another without proper care being taken by growers during production cycles for both crops.

Bean rust

Rust is a disease affecting many different plant types, including pinto beans. It’s caused by a fungus called Puccinia, which spreads from one plant to another through spores. The spores are spread by wind and rain, so if you live in an area with lots of humidity, you may need to take extra precautions to prevent rust from infecting your plants.

Powdery Mildew

Powdery mildew is another fungal disease that attacks many different types of plants, including pinto beans. It’s most often found on leaves but can also affect flowers and stems. Powdery mildew is spread from plant to plant via wind and rain, so if you’re growing your own pinto beans indoors, in a greenhouse, or outdoors in an area with high humidity, it’s especially important.

2. Pests

Part of learning how to grow pinto beans is familiarising yourself with the following pests.

Bean leaf beetle.

This pest is found in many areas, including North America and Europe. They are typically black or brown in color and lay eggs on the leaves or stems of plants. The eggs then hatch into larvae that feed on leaves and stems until they become adults.


Aphids are small insects that suck the juice from plant leaves, stems, and flowers. They can feed on a wide variety of plants, including most vegetables. The presence of one or more aphids does not necessarily mean that your pinto bean crop will be affected, but if there are many aphids present, it may indicate a serious infestation and a potential problem for your plants.

If you spot an aphid infestation on your pinto bean plants early enough in the growing season, you may be able to control it with insecticidal soap spray or other organic pesticides before it becomes too severe.

Leaf hoppers

Leaf hoppers are tiny, sap-sucking insects that feed on the leaves of plants. They are usually found in small groups on the undersides of leaves. They can easily be identified by their long antennae and legs.

Leaf hoppers are typically found on beans at the end of the summer, so you’ll need to watch for them throughout your growing season. If you see a leaf hopper infestation, it’s best to spray your plants with a pesticide quickly to prevent further damage from occurring.

Spider mites

Spider mites are tiny, eight-legged arthropods that feed on the leaves of plants. They are common in gardens but also a problem for farmers growing pinto beans.

You can prevent spider mite infestations by keeping the area around your bean plants free of debris and weeds, which can provide shelter for these pests. If you see signs of an infestation, treat the plants using insecticides or natural remedies like neem oil spray.

Grow pinto beans today!

You now know all you need to know on how to grow pinto beans. These plants are easy to grow and produce delicious beans that you can use in various ways. You’ll want to start your crop as soon as possible to harvest fresh, tasty pinto beans at their peak!

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