Germination can be affected by several things, such as the age of the seed, the soil temperature (in general for beans, wait to sow until the soil is at least 65 degrees F), moisture (beans like evenly moist soil, but not soggy), etc. Although it is usually not necessary to soak the beans for germination, some gardeners have had success doing so. If you try this, be sure not to oversoak them, or it will hurt the bean, possibly splitting it; test them every so often to make sure that they are not getting mushy. One method is to soak them for up to 30 minutes, or place them between damp towels overnight.
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