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Does this horticultural bean need rescuing?

15 years ago

Somehow I googled Zeedman's member page, and it got me thinking that maybe someone on this forum could tell me if I should feel guilty if I don't rescue the following strain of horticultural bean:

It's called "Atlas", though the variety of dried bean registered under this name in the NC registry of dried beans is white. I got it from Vermont Bean in 1997. I grew it out once in the fall and liked the flat but very meaty green beans with magenta stripes, and the way the pod color changed to indicate the stage of bean maturity. I could pick when the ground color of the pod was yellow-green for extra-tender translucent shiny greenish white shellies, or ivory for cream and magenta shellies. Stripes on the pods changed from magenta to red. These color changes may also be characteristic of other strains.

I planted them next to a short fence because I didn't know if they were pole beans, but the plants turned out to be short. Even so, I thought they were floppy when the very heavy beans were maturing, and I lassoed them loosely to the fence with a single string. I found this trial on the web, which indicates that other strains may be even floppier, as indicated by "lodging".

The dried bean is very similar in color (dark red, mottled) to "Tongues of Fire" and "Coco Rubico" seed of the same vintage. But the seeds of Atlas I have are smoother, fatter, rounder and more attractive than the seeds of the latter two varieties (not to say that I got premium seeds of the latter two). The Atlas seeds look more like tiny eggs than beans.

I'm willing to surrender my seeds to an expert if someone thinks they are important, or I may try growing out a few at a time myself.

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