Sunday, September 20, 2009

Yard-Long Beans

Each year I try to grow at least one new thing in my potager garden and if it leans to the side of the unusual, all the better. Since I'm a relatively new gardener (2005), there are many things that are new to me. In past years, I've planted burgundy okra, French Charentais melons, purple beans, and hard neck garlic, to name a few.

My New Thing for this year was Yard-Long Beans (Vigna unguiculata subsp. sesquipedalis).

Though the beans are edible, I grew them for their uniqueness with no intention of eating them. If you were to eat them, they are prepared just like regular bush or pole green beans.

The blossoms are large and quite pretty.

None of mine reached 36" in length, but they came pretty darn close. I'm saving the seeds from this year's beans so I can grow them again next year. I may even decide to eat them.


Unknown said...

These look so cool, and what a wonderful way to add color to your vegetable garden. Good job.

Tatyana@MySecretGarden said...

Hi Kylee! I'd grow them just for a look, the flowers are so pretty! Actually, I don't remember having beans with blue flowers. I have those with red and white.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I remember that a friend of mine had something like this in her garden one year but I don't remember if she had it for looks or if they ate it. They are big veggie gardeners. They look fantastic. Quite the conversation starter.

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Those are pretty cool beans Kylee! I like the red color. Fun!

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

Those are really neat, they sure do add interest. I guess if you did eat them you'd only need one bean at a time :)

Connie said...

Cool. I grew some lovely purple beans this year, but when they were cooked they turned green.

Nutty Gnome said...

Wow, I love those - they look great! You'd get plenty of meals out of that lot!
(I grew some nearly as big as that, but it was accidental .....they were hiding in amongst the leaves and I missed them!)
Have a great day :)

Anonymous said...

We have been growing these for more than 20 years. They are a very popular veggie in the Indian Subcontinent. My hubby is Indian so he can't do w/o them in the summer. Use them just like green beans. If u raise chickens, they love the blossoms. When the blossoms are done with their duty, pick them off for the poultry to eat. Because of the length and flexibility after cooking, they can be used in a beautiful presentation on the dinner platter. We grow both green and red. Saving the seeds is very easy since they are so large. Yard longs cannot cross pollinate w/green beans since they are in a different family. Everyone should try to grow them. And what a great teepee they make since u must give them something to climb. Thanks

TC said...

Do you think the seeds you save from your yard long beans will grow true to form next year? If they're annuals, they won't. You could try. They are quite unique and I'd grow some myself if everything else didn't get in the way. ;~)

Louise Hartwig said...

We grew them in the Childrens Garden last year and this year we had some come up volunteer.

Kylee Baumle said...

Angel ~ Yes, they're definitely unique!

Tatyana ~ That's exactly why I grew them! They're actually more of a white with lavender shading, but you know how that color is - lavender or blue?

Lisa ~ Yes, anything that's rather bizarre always gets comments! :-)

Janet ~ Yes, I thought they'd be fun, too.

Catherine ~ LOL! I never thought of that! "Honey, could you go pick a bean for our dinner?" :-D

Connie ~ I grew those last year, Connie. Those are fun, aren't they?

Nutty Gnome ~ It's so easy to miss the regular green ones, isn't it? I use the ones I miss for seed for the next year. ;-)

Anonymous ~ Thanks for sharing an interesting perspective on these beans! I didn't think about presentation and how well these lend themselves to all kinds of ideas! Ooooh, growing them on a teepee...great idea!

TC ~ Yes, they'll grow true to form, because these were saved seeds from beans grown last year in someone else's garden. You should grow them! Let something else go! LOL!

Mom ~ That's interesting that some came up volunteer there! I wonder if we'll have that here. I tried to save all the pods before they opened, so probably not, but I might have missed one.

Chiot's Run said...

Those are very cool, I may have to grow some next year.

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