10/23/16 - April and early May 2016 were hot here south
of Seattle but the last half of May and most of the summer was much cooler than
usual. Between the chilly weather, the deer and the voles it was a difficult
season for beans.
Aunt Jean’s did well and they were the earliest pole
bean. They are best when full but still green. After they turn yellow they are
delicious but a bit chewy.
Brita’s Foot Long produced a smaller than normal crop in
the chilly summer. They are just okay as a snap bean but the white shellies are
Cherokee Greasy produced a fair crop. They tended to rot
as they turn yellow.
Cherokee Striped Cornhill did not blossom until June 10!
They produced good snaps the end of September. It might be possible to save
seeds in a warmer summer.
Clay Bank Fall did well. They were the first full been
and they remained tender and tasty until the end of September.
Early Brown Harvest did very poorly in the cool weather.
Fat Man did very well last summer but very poorly this
Frank Barnett Cutshort did very well as usual.
Granny has always done very well here but this summer the
early plants died and the main crop vines are still trying to produce a few
Lone White Seed Greasy did well.
Monachine did very well.
Monte Cristo did very well.
North Carolina Speckled Long Greasy produced a smaller
than normal crop.
NT Half Runner was an outstanding full bean as always. We
just used the last of the mature yellow pods.
Pete Ingram was an outstanding been and it flourished in
the cool weather. This is a very fine full bean that is tender and tasty even
when the hulls are partially dry.
Square House produced a smaller than normal crop.
Tennessee Cutshort did well as always but the crop was
smaller than usual.
Tobacco Worm produced a smaller than normal crop but the
full beans were very fine.
Valley Bean produced a good crop. The beans have less
flavor than some but the snaps are still in good condition in late October.
White Simpson Greasy did well this year. It produced one
plant with striped pods and black seeds. Both black seed and white seed pods
are still usable.
Favorites for 2016 Monte Cristo, Clay Bank Fall,
Monachine, NT Half Runner, Pete Ingram Fall, Frank Barnett Cutshort, Square
House, Tennessee Cutshort. The best late ones for use in October were NCSLGC, White and Black Simpson Greasy,
Valley Bean, NT Half Runner.
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin6 years ago
Had a prolonged wet spell in May & most of June this year, so was only able to direct-seed a few beans in my home plots during that period. Instead, I started most of my beans (and even a few soybeans) as transplants. That once again proved to be good insurance against bad weather.
The majority of the beans this year were from 2009 saved seed; and started in pots with sterile media & water, germination was close to 100% across the board. I planted pairs of seed in Jiffy 32's, with two varieties per tray... or 32 plants per variety. The transplants were very healthy initially, but because continued wet weather delayed transplanting, they had all sprouted runners & were top heavy when transplanted in late June. I planted the pairs intact, using 15-16" between pairs. For some reason, the plants were very slow to take off, with very little growth for most of July. Runners were produced in great numbers in August, though, and because the frost came very late this year, all were able to produce dry seed.
Beans: (all pole)
B.B. Wax - new trial, from SSE yearbook. Grew in pots. Round yellow pods 5-6" long. I only sampled a few young pods raw, since I let the majority go for seed... will do a further trial & seed increase in the future.
Bosnian Pole - was later than most to resume growth, but still produced a decent crop of shellies. A single plant was much more vigorous than the rest... and turned out to be a black-seeded cross, the only cross this year. Reviewing my records, it must have been a cross with Emerite - which was 100' away! That single plant produced 17 oz. of large, glossy black seed... and because of its vigor & yield, I will attempt to stabilize it. I will not, however, save seed this year from the other plants (since further crosses would be likely) and will re-try Bosnian Pole again next year for seed.
Brita's Foot Long - had an outstanding pod set, but much of the seed was deformed. The deformity was only in part of the row, so saved seed from the good side, and ate the rest as shellies. I have had 3 different beans perform poorly in that part of the garden, something may have been dumped there in the past... cowpeas, though, do well there.
Cascade Giant - new trial, from the Richard Schoolmaster collection. Round, striped pods 4-5" long. Nothing giant about it, I found the pods unremarkable, and the productivity low... disappointing.
Chester - large black & white striped shelly. Planted 5/21, first dry seed 8/10 = 81 days. Had good productivity in spite of being in afternoon shade, and saved a lot of dry seed.
Emerite - grown for snaps only. Direct seeded 6/22, bore very heavily... filled my freezer & gave the rest away. Thanks to the late freeze, was still producing until 2 days ago!
Kentucky Wonder White #191 - very heavy pod set, but only ate one meal of snaps (because Emerite was doing so well). Dark green, squarish pods 9-10" long, but best picked smaller. Harvested several pounds of very high-quality seed.
Ma Williams - very large shelly. Yield was again exceptional, which is what I have come to expect from this bean. Froze & gave away about half of the crop as shellies, let the rest go for dry seed. 106 days to dry seed, later than usual.
Porcelain - very large red & white bean, nearly the size of runner beans. Had a very good dry seed yield. When I last grew it, I found the shellies to be large, but unpleasant in flavor. DW wanted to try them anyway, and to my surprise, they were good??? The heavy rainfall this year may have positively influenced the flavor. 90 days to dry seed.
Striped Cornfield - snap, but IMO best as a shelly or dry bean. Exceptional productivity; I collected a lot of dry seed, and ate a lot as shellies. DW said it is one of her favorite shellies for flavor. Was weak climber when grown in 2009, but grew to the top of the 6' trellis this year. 95 days to dry.
Tetovac - wide, flat, looks like a white-seeded lima, best used dry. Very firm texture, might be a good pole substitute for Cannellini. Requires a long season... might not have made it had the frost come on schedule, but matured about 1/2 of its seed in the extra 3 weeks. Was a much more vigorous climber than when last grown, branched heavily & covered the trellis in a dense mass of vines.
Toby Poe's Purple - new trial, from SSE. Round purple pods 5-6" long. The initial yield was only so-so, and I let the majority go for seed. All dry pods were picked (75 days to first dry), and the vines lost all their leaves... but to my surprise, the bare vines sprouted new branches, and bore a heavy Fall crop of snaps!
Zlatak - wax, short stringless pods. I had been looking forward to growing this again - not for the pods (which are tasty) but because I found the shellies to be outstanding last time, and wanted to grow them in quantity. Froze 8 pints of shellies, and collected a lot of seed. 105 days to first dry.
- Madagascar - large red & white seeds similar to Christmas, but with a predominantly red pattern. I planted a lot of them, with high expectations... but the yield was disappointing. That may have been due to the relatively low fertility of my home plot, so I look forward to trying it again in my more fertile rural garden. Was able to save a fair amount of seed.
- Violet's Multi-colored - new trial, from trade several years ago. Small lima, seed with many combinations of buff, black, and multiple shades of red. SSE lists this as Bush??? Was a vigorous pole habit for me, with a fairly heavy yield. I planted a lot, so froze several quarts, and harvested a large amount of dry seed. 100 days to dry.
- Aeron Purple Star - new trial, unusual purple-podded snap. Put out 16 plants, but the seed appeared to be unstable; 3 of those plants put out green pods. The yield was somewhat disappointing, given that Insuk's Wang Kong had borne heavily in the same plot. I saved seed from the purple podded plants, and will attempt to purify it in the future unless I am able to procure more stable seed.
- Bianco de Spagna - white flowers & seeds, from trade with drloyd several years ago. My first two attempts to grow this for seed failed, and this was the last of the original seed. It nearly failed again; the plants suffered severe stunting after transplant, and were the slowest of all beans to recover. They finally put out large numbers of runners in mid August & began flowering heavily, setting many pods. The pods take a long time to mature, and probably would have failed again had the freeze come on schedule... but I was able to harvest a fair amount of dry seed, and cooked a big kettle of shellies.
Running out of time, and will be planting garlic for the next several days - I will post results for all other legumes when time permits.
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada6 years ago
Zeedman, I think I mentioned before the Aeron Purple Star I grew this year produced nothing but purple pods, not a greenie in the bunch. The seed I grew this year was from those grown for Gwilym in complete isolation in Devon so there should be no chance of crossing. I don't think anyone in my neighborhood grew runners this year so they should be O.K. I'll pop a few in the mail tomorrow, keep your fingers crossed LOL.
hemnancy6 years ago
My favorite for earliest snap pole beans and then also producing well at the end of the season is a bean that is either Zelma Zesta or Rattlesnake, I grew both last year and find the seeds hard to distinguish. In addition to the long cylindrical red-streaked beans, stringless and tender until very large, they are mixed with beans also red-streaked but wider and flat, slightly curved on the ends, which look like Uncle Steve beans, also producing early and late. Does Zelma Zesta usually have mixed forms?
Jembo Polish- I planted a lot of these this year and will plant even more next year, they are large flat beans that stay tender and stringless when large and also develop beautiful 1" beans with brown swirls, wonderful as shellies.
Annelino Giallo- Italian pole with curved yellow pods (shrimp bean), these produced very well and still ripening in fall, taking a long time to dry down. The pods stay tender when fat, excellent shellies.
Red Eye Fall beans- I should have checked my descriptions, I didn't realize I could eat the pods so mainly used them as shellies and dry beans, they are very tasty and uniformly beautiful beans. Only early production.
Ojo de Cabra- New this year, very productive and beautiful beans, mid to late season, with swirled markings and fun to shell. Meaty shellies.
Mayflower- productive small dry beans, only early.
Turkey Craw- like larger Mayflower beans in markings, very productive and super easy to shell, the inflated pods just zip open like they had a zipper, long season and still being picked.
I started growing pole beans on my deer fencing and also put up some new 15' trellis netting, so grew a lot more pole beans, and wanted to plant them again in the same place, so what do you all think about whether beans need to be rotated or can be grown in the same place every year? I'm shopping for vining zucchini and other squash to maybe start rotating the two crops on my trellises every year if necessary. I'm also shopping for new beans in the bush category to rotate in parts of my garden without trellises. I would appreciate hearing about bush beans that make substantial bushes that don't need propping and have good production of snap or shell beans. I had some early crops from heirlooms Pisarecka Zlutoluske, Yer Fasulaysi, Marconi nano, and very late half-runner beans from Pink Peanut (Old Joe Clark). They are good but I want bigger more productive bushes if they exist, any suggestions? I use bush beans now down the length of the pole bean trellises to make a wider 3' bed.
hemnancy6 years ago
I forgot to say that I also grew and harvested a lot of runner beans, a mix of Insuk's Wang Kong and the very long Polestar. I love them for the hummingbirds they attract and eat some as green beans, but DH thinks they are too fibrous so I let a lot of them develop to shellies or dry, they are so wonderful in soup and make up for the meaty lima beans of my childhood, which need a lot of heat. I also like their preference for cool weather so I am still picking them in fall.
Also I was not very impressed with Tennessee greasy cut short in spite of their making incredible vines, because they were so late to set any beans, but now I am starting to appreciate them since I tried them as snap beans, and they are producing well now at the end of the season when a lot of beans have quit.
aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada6 years agolast modified: 6 years ago
Once again I was growing for seed and having a small garden I don't grow many of most of them, I bag a lot of flowers :). We didn't get to taste many other than AERON PURPLE STAR, a tender, stringless with a touch of sweetness runner, EMILIA'S ITALIAN my old faithful snap bean, BARKSDALE my favorite wax bean and this year we actually got to eat some of the WHITE SEEDED CHEROKEE TRAIL OF TEARS just as good as the black seeded version.
The latest to produce was SICITALIAN BLACK SWAMP planted at the same time as the others but I did manage to get some seed. BARRY ISLAND turned out to be a tasty snap. BLUE SHACKAMAXON, my seed sample was getting old so thought I'd better renew it, when I shelled the pods I found I had two different colored beans, a possible cross before I got them.
AUNT MARY'S MEAT known for split seed coats gave me a fair amount of seed, about 1/3 of the seed didn't have split seed coats. I grew BIRD EGG #3 again for seed, I shared so much of my seed for this one I had to beef up my stash, we did sneak a few for shellies tho :). IRISH CONNERS I grew again to replenish my seed stash but it is another nice snap. I grew MENNONITE PURPLE STRIPE for the first time, again seed was getting old and as I had given half my pkt. away I thought I'd better grow a few out for fresh seed. The seed of this one looks very similar to 'Oregon Giant' could they be the same bean? Looks like I should grow both one year and compare.
I grew LAZY WIFE(the original) for seed after sharing most of the seed I had with others and STEEVES CASEKNIFE, I only had a few seeds so again grew these for my seed stash. I also grew another pole bean WITSA, I sent most of the seed back to Russ http://abeancollectorswindow.com/ to help refresh his seed stash.
I only grew 4 plants of CANDY, last year I grew the sample I had been given (three seeds) in a tub. The seed was old, didn't produce very well and grew as a true bush, no runners. As this is supposed to be a twinning bush/ half runner? I grew it again this year to see if it stayed a true bush form, ha, the four plants ended up growing approx. six feet and produced a lot of pods so I ended up with a goodly amount of seed. A few had a reversed seed coat color, these I sent to Russ Crow along with a few varieties he didn't have plus... the one outcross I was growing for him, the seed was pretty old and needed renewing, I had to really baby them to get them to
produce a few seeds but I managed to send back some, not as many as I
would have liked to tho. One vine I got out of this bunch of seed grew and grew, produced over 200 pods but not one seed in any of them, never had that happen before.
By the way your small lots permit works like a charm, I've sent bean seed to Russ two years in a row using this permit, both times he had the seed within a week. He sent me the permit which I have to enclose in my package plus a sticker to put on the outside of the box to have it sent to your plant inspection division. I don't think it went there as both times the packages I sent weren't even opened and he had them in a week. This permit allows me to send up to 50 pkts. no more than 50 seeds per packet, a weight restriction applies on each packet tho. You have to include a list of what you are sending. The seed is to be in closed ziplocks for easy viewing and each pkt. has to have a label with sender's name and addy, receivers name and addy, the Genus, Fabaceae, Species and variety on or in it. I now keep a made up form for labels on my computer, only have to chance a few things so it goes pretty quick.
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin6 years ago
"...so what do you all think about whether beans need to be rotated or can be grown in the same place every year?"
Planting in the same place should be no problem, unless there were disease issues in that location last season.
"I would appreciate hearing about bush beans that make substantial bushes
that don't need propping and have good production of snap or shell
"Giant Red Tarka" would be my best suggestion. Stout bushes with a very high yield, especially good for their very large, attractive shellies. Sometimes forms short, non-twining runners. G.R.T. has a short DTM, and has already been successfully grown by others in the PNW.
I also have a bush bean sent to me as "Atlas", although I question
whether that is its true name. It is a heavily-bearing snap, with
upright bushes, flat pods, and fairly large seeds if let go.
There is another "bush" bean that forms very large shellies - "Uzice" - but it has some longer non-twining runners (sometimes 2-3') which fall over, and only a fair yield. I grow it over straw to prevent ground contact with the pods.
Annette, thank you for sharing your positive experience with the Small Lots program. I've seldom seen it mentioned on garden forums, and even then the reviews have been mostly negative. Good to see the system worked for you & Russ.
sea_kangaroo6 years ago
I have space constraints and am pretty much obliged to grow beans in many of the same places every year (either that or sacrifice 70% of my bean space), and have never had a recurring disease issue.
I've used the Small Lots programs for a couple years as well, though only to send seeds to my home address while I'm traveling. Worked well for me, too. Lots of fine print to read before starting but once you get the hang of it it's not bad. Sometimes they don't even open the box, and sometimes they open every single enclosed seed packet; seems to depend on the preferences of the individual customs agent. They confiscated a pack of sorghum once (turns out we're not allowed to import sorghum, whoops!), but that's all.
For a sturdy bush plant, maybe Woods Mountain Crazy Bean? They were quite robust when I grew them, though eventually flopped over a bit from the weight of the masses of beans on them.
sea_kangaroo6 years ago
My bean report:
This year we had kind of strange weather (though with every year now being strange in a new way, I guess that makes it a "normal" year). Like drloyd, here we had an early, very warm spring, and are currently in a late, very warm autumn (going to be 70 degrees all this week!), but the summer in between was unusually cool and almost completely missed any of the heatwaves rolling over the rest of the country. The coolness made beans slow and tomatoes a full month late to bear. Anyway:
--Alma Whitaker Cornfield-- A bit on the late side but did very very well, healthy tall vines totally loaded with handfuls of pods. Smallish, curved pods tightly packed with small, pinto-patterned seeds. I ate some as full beans and they stringed easily and cooked up pretty quick. Got these from Remy of Sample Seeds. Planted 6 May, flowered 8 Aug, dry seed 14 Sep.
--Blue Shackamaxon-- A favorite of mine and in my opinion a real winner. Did very well, as always. Tall plants with shiny black seeds and pods that turn purple at maturity. Great-flavored dry bean. My seed was getting low so I grew a bunch out at my folks' place well away from any other beans, since this variety seems to cross very readily, both as a pollen recipient and donor.
--Clarendon Wonder-- Stringless snap bush with large bright red seeds. Australian heritage variety bred by Hawkesbury Agricultural College in the early 1900s. Did pretty well in a container. Planted 4 May, dry seed 24 July.
--Gunlik-- Dual-purpose bush bean. Small black seeds look just like Midnight/Black Turtle, but the pods are sweet. Did pretty well despite being grown in a container in a shady spot. Planted 6 May, dry seed 30 June, and all of the plants survived the first harvest and are currently loaded with a second crop just past the shelly stage.
--Inka Pea Bean-- Did quite well despite being in a shady spot. Relatively short vines ( petered out at 6'), and seed in the usual pea-bean bicolor red & white pattern, but with pretty pinkish streaks inside the red part. Planted 4 May, dry seed 1 Aug.
--Kaiser Friedrich-- Did very well. Fairly tall but well-behaved vines; when they outgrew their trellis I looped them down to the bottom and grew them back up the same way again, making approx. 9' feet of vine total. Pods stringless, flattish, yellow at first getting a neon pink blush, and purplish when dry. Bright purple seeds. Old German variety. Planted 6 May, dry seed 2 Sep.
--Kuma Anna's Charcoal Grey-- Got utterly smothered by the Apios growing in the same bed, so I only got out 3x the seed I put in! Pole snap. Planted 2 May, dry seed 30 July.
--Lavender Bush German-- Bush dual-purpose variety with seeds a unique lilac color I haven't seen on any other bean. Did pretty well in a container. Planted 4 May, dry seed 25 July.
--Mariazeller Bush-- Pretty seed, but didn't seem to like being container-grown and hardly made anything.
--Mountain Pima Burro & Caballito-- Poor germination from old seed, I'll have to grow this out again next year to bring numbers back up. Weakly climbing plants, beautiful seeds, tasty thin-skinned dry beans, wish I'd got enough to actually eat any this year.
--Norridgewock-- Usual-looking red & white pea bean. Short vines. Didn't have many seed to start with and had damping-off issues, so only got replacement seed for a harvest.
--Riesenkorn aus Omsk-- "Giant-seed from Omsk," which sounded intriguing. Summer-planted bush plants that weren't very happy with the container I grew them in. Seeds like large kidney bean size.
--Black Cave Dweller-- Bush lima that turned out to be day-length-sensitive, so I haven't gotten any seed off them yet.
--Madagascar-- Large-seeded pole lima. Planted late, so just maturing pods now. Plants doing well despite tomato competition.
--Ping Zebra-- Finally deigned to make flowers this month, so I'll see if anything actually comes of them.
--Washday-- mostly-bush cowpea that did pretty well despite being smothered by Apios. Seed coats tend to split. This is supposed to be fast-cooking, and I think would be considered a "lady pea," but I haven't tried any yet. Seeds small and ivory with some red speckling around the hilum.
--Tiger-striped-- Yard-long with red stripes on green. I have a bit of trouble with yard-longs due to the cool nights here, but this one did pretty well for a yard-long. Not day-length-sensitive, and made a couple big handfuls of snaps. Didn't eat any yet but it's still producing.
P. coccineus Runner Beans:
--Ayocote Amarillo & Ayocote Morado-- Some beans from dinner planted on a whim, they made nothing at all in the summer but perked up slightly in the autumn to give me a very small harvest (like half a handful per plant).
--Tucomares Mixed-- Complete crop failure this year. Every legume in their planter shriveled up and died and I'm not sure if it was blight, fungus, herbicide-contaminated potting soil, or what (all-new store-bought soil in only that planter).
--adzuki beans Buff, and Blue Speckled-- both did pretty good this year, making a decent number of pods with seeds of the proper size. Seed for both from Anpetu Oihankesni. Planted 2 May, dry seed 30 July.
--unnamed buff-seeded rice bean (Vigna umbellata)-- Second year growing this, and it again did well sprawling over a short trellis. The seed pods corkscrew open explosively when fully ripe, so I've taken to picking them either in the shelly stage or over a deep bucket. Going to try a dal recipe with these next week.
--unnamed hyacinth beans-- A veritable explosion of neon purple flowers and pods on horizontally-greedy vines (were quite useful for separating P. vulgaris bean varieties from each other). Seed looks like tiny Oreos. Planted early May, dry seed 12 Sep.
--unnamed red-seeded sword bean-- Made tall thick vines, but seems to be day-length-sensitive as it didn't bloom until well into fall. Currently ripening a few thick pods that look like they'll have only 1-2 seeds each.
--groundnut/Apios americana-- Went utterly mad this year and swallowed all in their path to form a very leafy 4'x4'x5' hedge out of their 4'x4' raised bed. Flowered a lot (and smells like your great-great-aunt's perfume, pyew) but I don't think set seed. I can see some tubers poking up from the soil a bit and it looks like there're going to be masses of them to try out some recipes.
sea_kangaroo6 years ago
Goodness, that turned out to be a bit of a novel! Pea report, in brief:
--Anika from Lettland-- Very productive soup pea that to my surprise was one of the earliest of all peas this year. Small orangey-mottled seeds.
--Bijou-- Very large snow pea.
--Bonart-- Red-seeded Swedish soup pea.
--Carlin-- Traditional English soup pea, very late. To my surprise not horrible as a young shell pea. Not starchy or mealy and ok taste, though not sweet.
--Caruther's Purple Pod-- Medium-height climber. Didn't try any.
--Charmette-- Short petit pois, good flavor.
--Citadel-- Short petit pois, good flavor. Does taste different from Charmette.
--Engels Sabel-- "Angel's Saber." Dual-purpose snow pea/sheller. Stringed pods, medium height.
--Green Beauty-- Kapuler dual-purpose variety. Snaps are big and have strings. Good sweet shell peas with a slightly different flavor.
--[Irish] Purple Pod-- Capucijner-type from Brown Envelope Seeds. Tall and productive despite bad mildew.
--Krimberger-- Very tender sweet yellow-podded snow/snap pea. So fiberless that the dry pods practically disintegrate. Great flavor, unlike Golden Sweet which I strongly dislike. Moderately tall. White flower.
--Mammoth Blue-- Short plants with shortened node length, nothing at all blue or mammoth about it.
--Mrs. Lei-- Bicolor salmon-pink & white flowers, like a crown pea. Prolific, often with 2 pods per node. Tender stringed snow peas & sweet non-starchy shell peas with an unusual flavor.
--Pischeldorfer-- Pretty red-seeded soup pea. Fairly early. Last year I was impressed with how sweet the shell peas were for a soup pea, but this year I didn't like them nearly as much. Different growing conditions, I guess.
--Red Podded-- From Rebsie's cross. Alas, also swamped by Apios. What pods made it were truly beautiful. One plant made all-yellow pods.
--Riesen aus Melbourne-- "Melbourne Giant." Low germination. Tall plants with fat pods and large seeds. Fibrous pods definitely not dual-purpose. Good shell peas even quite late in the season.
--Schwarz Urperle-- Dark reddish-brown seeds, medium-tall climber, I assume a soup pea. Haven't tried yet.
--Sugar Magnolia-- Turned out to be a tendril-y strain, alas. Didn't try any.
--Sugaree-- Medium-height Kapuler sugar snap. Juicy.
--Tom Thumb-- The shortest and dwarfest pea variety of all. Early. Dual-purpose snow & sweet shell pea.
--Triple Treat-- Tasty and prolific shell pea, 3 pods per node. About 5 feet tall.
--Waldmanns Riesen-- "Waldmann's Giant." Very tall shell pea.
--Yakumo-- Another very large snow pea, very similar to Bijou.
--Victorian Colossal Climbing-- So-named by the nursery selling it, this is the original super-tall strain of Alderman. It was indeed the tallest pea I've yet grown! Good sweet shelling pea.
shuffles_gw6 years ago
For winter/spring I planted 14 varieties. In spite of a flood, all did well. This is the first time I have planted pole beans in the fall. I planted my favorite six varieties in four inch pots on September 19. Algarve is ready after only 45 days. Snowball and Dade should be ready within a week. Violet Podded Stringless, Bird Egg #3 and Speckled Cranberry are well on their way. This has been so promising, I plan to make the fall crop my main crop. Much better than handling frosts and freezes in January and February and having everything die from heat and bugs in May. It will be interesting to see what will happen to this crop if there are no freezes. Here Winter/Spring beans have only a 90 day window.
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin6 years agolast modified: 6 years ago
I was re-reading this thread before posting, and noticed that I had missed something. Sea-kangaroo, you reported poor results with
Black Cave Dweller lima, and thought it daylength sensitive. Was that
from me? That variety showed no photo-period sensitivity in my latitude,
and bore heavily.
The cleaning & sorting are finished as of today, so I can wrap up this year's results. From the varieties listed above, there was a total of 32.75 pounds of beans, and 9.75 pounds of limas... and many pints of frozen shellies. The runner bean yields were disappointing, just over 2# total.
I found substantial runner bean tubers for the first time (on Aeron Purple Star) and will be attempting to over-winter them. I've been trying to upload photos to Photobucket, but it hasn't worked right since I upgraded to Windows 10... and no response from tech support. >:-(
Cowpeas & yardlongs:
- Adzuki, Grey Seed - misnamed (probably due to its small seed size), since this is a cowpea. Small gray seeds in pencil-straight pods. DTM for dry seed was 75 days, so well suited for short seasons. Harvested 1.5# grown in partial shade... but observed the same variety growing in full sun at SSE this year, and it was loaded. 3-4' vines.
- Kirby's (a.k.a. Kirby's Whippoorwill) - gray/brown seed. For some reason, this variety had heavier than normal vine growth, and was very late to bear. Probably would not have had much seed at all, had the frost not been late... harvested less than a pound from a 24' row. Looked like the symptoms of excess N; but no fertilizer is used on my garden, so don't know why it performed so poorly this year.
- Zipper cream - large, round white seed. Germination was extremely poor; apparently due to bad seed, since all other cowpeas & yardlongs had excellent germination under the same conditions. Disappointing, since that seed was a swap with a seed vendor (who shall remain nameless, since this was not a sale). Only two plants survived, and sent out 5-6' runners. Harvested enough good seed to do another grow out next year.
- Yardlong, Galante - long, light green pods that stay firm when cooked. Did a very large planting, three 24' rows, one of which was allowed to go to seed. I spaced the rows a little more closely (36", vice 42"), and while the vines were vigorous, the yield was less than expected. Still had plenty to both freeze & give away, though, and harvested just under a pound of seed.
- Yardlong, Sierra Madre - dark green pods, wider than most yardlongs, since they are exceptionally slow to develop fiber. Planted on the South side of my garage (where they got reflected heat) they bore heavily. A single row produced several pickings before let go, then 11 ounces of dry seed. The plants were nicked by frost & I thought them dead... but they resprouted, and I picked a handful of pods in late October!
- Yancheng Bush - short light green pods 8-12" long, with firm texture. Planted two 24' rows, with one intended for seed production. Pod production began 50 days after sowing, and was continuously heavy until mid-October... I actually got tired of picking them. Harvested 1.5# of dry seed.
- Nadja (soup pea) - planted very late, last week in June. Very good germination for 2007 seed, and a very heavy pod set... but PM destroyed the whole row as the pods were filling out. Only harvested a handful of seed, will try again next year... hopefully planted earlier.
- Prebohaty (soup pea) - cream colored peas. These too were planted late (same day as Nadja), but resisted PM long enough to produce 12 ounces of seed. The original seed had some green-seeded crosses, this was my 4th attempt to remove the impurities, and appears to have been successful.
- Purple Pod Parsley (shelling pea) - had great germination, but still had a large percentage of green or partially-green pods. Since crossing with the green podded plants was probable, the seed crop was abandoned & the seeds thrown into the soup jar. This has been stubbornly resisting my efforts to eliminate the impurities over several generations, I will probably have to grow it under cover to be successful.
- Sandy (snow pea) - short pods borne in pairs, good even when seeds begin to enlarge. 2009 seed had outstanding germination. The yield was reduced due to partial shade, but had several pickings of pods, and 5 ounces of wrinkled green seed.
Had planned 22 seed crops (won't list them all individually)... but much of what was direct seeded rotted in the ground due to heavy rains. Fortunately, I had started transplants for many of those as backups, so losses were not as severe as they might have been otherwise. 11 varieties had 8 ounces or more of seed, and another 8 produced at least enough seed for several more attempts. One variety had a heavy yield, but was completely destroyed by voles as it was drying (note to self: put traps on the patio next year). One variety had apparent crosses, so it was destroyed... and one variety had 0% germination, with no transplants as backup. In total, soybeans had just over 11# of dry seed - less than half of what I expected. Soybean transplants proved their worth, though, so that may become part of my S.O.P.
Overall, although there were some setbacks, it was a fairly good year. Outstanding yields from peppers & okra (my best ever) helped make up for the disappointments.
It is a shame that seed swaps have dropped off so much since GW changed hands... even if I get a good bean seed crop now, it will mostly just end up in the soup pot after a few years. I wish it were otherwise, sharing & swapping is the primary reason I grow so many beans in the first place. :-(
aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada6 years ago
"It is a shame that seed swaps have dropped off so much since GW changed
hands... even if I get a good bean seed crop now, it will mostly just
end up in the soup pot after a few years. I wish it were otherwise,
sharing & swapping is the primary reason I grow so many beans in the
first place. :-("
Sharing and swapping is what I liked about it too, but also the histories behind some of them I find them fascinating. It's a shame so many have left this forum, it used to be quite active, this is the only forum I know of that is just about Beans, Peas and Legumes.
I joined a couple of other forums but there's not much happening in the world of beans on them, one exception Russ has a thread on heirloom beans on one of them that is quite interesting. I thinks some might have gone to Facebook when GW changed hands. I didn't DH is not a big fan.
I may have a lead on a couple of varieties I've been trying to find, Russ has sourced one out for me in the U.K. I have my fingers crossed and the other, someone over there is helping me look for it, the Heritage Seed Library has them as coming from B.C. I'm going to send her a few samples of beans she hasn't got along with a couple she's been looking for :). Bean growers are some of the nicest people :).
I keep saying it's time to stop acquiring more varieties but then I see one that sounds interesting and all caution goes out the window :(.
sea_kangaroo6 years ago
Zeedman, the Black Cave Dweller wasn't from you, it was from a random person visiting the Berea swap. I guess there might be different strains! I grew BCD in the same spot as I grew Henderson Red last year, which set a great crop, so I don't think it's the part-shade of that spot that's the problem (and it was in a container with new soil).
I've been building up a little collection of bush limas, which are handy for avoiding cross-pollination. My yard is small and the local pollinators love lima flowers, but if I put one vine variety in the ground, one vine var. in a pot, and one bush var. in a pot, I can move around/cover up the potted ones to prevent crossing, plus usually the bush ones bloom quite a while before the vines.
There's a very active legume group on Facebook (Heirloom Bean Addicts Anonymous), which is mostly people sharing photos. As winter trading season approaches maybe I can divert some of them here. :) Facebook is pretty much impossible to search for older posts so things shared there pretty much vanish into the ether, which is a real shame, unlike on here where years-old threads not uncommonly get revived by new people with information to add.
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin6 years ago
"Zeedman, the Black Cave Dweller wasn't from you, it was from a random person visiting the Berea swap."
That random person might have been me. :-) Or if not me, maybe someone I shared seed with there previously. I made the trip to Berea several years ago (ran into Remy there) and brought some of the Cave Dweller (black seed coats) with me. I also have seed for Cave Dweller (red seed coats), which I have yet to grow... hopefully in 2017, if I don't get distracted by something else. ;-)
Heirloom Bean Addicts Anonymous - thanks Sea_kangaroo for the reference, I'd heard that there were some bean groups on Facebook (might even have been from you). I have thus far avoided that site (I don't like their business model) but may have to check that out. Couldn't find a reference to it in my search engine, though... do Facebook pages show up on web searches?
The search I just did reminds me that I never joined Russ's Little Easy bean thread, I''l have to get on that before I forget again. ;-)
sea_kangaroo6 years ago
The random person was a woman, so not you unless you're a shapeshifter! This was fall 2015. Apart from that and her family cornfield bean (surnames Cheser & Wilma), she had all commercially-available heirlooms like Hidatsa Red, Christmas lima, Cranberry, etc.
Is your red-seeded Cave Dweller a bush as well? (do you know what the story is with the name, by the way? I assume another version of the ol' "found these in an archaeological site" story)
Here's the Facebook group, though you have to be logged in to see that it exists and a member to see the posts: https://www.facebook.com/groups/HBAA1/
I'm not much of a fan of FB as a company either, but it certainly makes sharing photos easy and I got some really good contacts and trades from the group. Russ Crow and macmex are on there as well.
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin6 years ago
Well, I guess it wasn't me. ;-)
The red-seeded version is allegedly a bush too. The black-seeded Cave Dweller which I grew was definitely true bush.
Wish I could join that group, I'm sure I would find many there that I know... but having attempted to join a few minutes ago, I was reminded of the privacy issues that kept me from joining in the first place, and stopped the process (I think?).
aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada