Bean Surprise


Last summer, my sister planted horticulture beans in her raised bed and was surprised to see them vine like a pole bean.  She had grown them before and never had this issue.  My parents and I have also grown them for years and had never seen this.

As you can see from the picture, mine are doing the same thing Kay’s did last year.  I used to get my horticulture bean seed from our local hardware store, but they closed this winter so I ordered this year’s crop from Shumway’s.  Kay got her seeds from Shumway’s last year, too.

Aha!  I think we’re onto something! I grabbed my Shumway’s catalog and read that this bean is called a French Horticultural and has a semi-running habit.  I know my hardware store variety was called “horticulture,” but I don’t know what “sub-variety” it was.  Obviously, it wasn’t a semi-runner.

My family has used horticulture beans as shell beans for years.  They are easy to grow, hardy, and taste wonderful with ham hocks or used in chili.  They are a pretty bean, too, being primarily white with pink speckles.  I guess they’re also not above giving you a surprise every now and then, too!  We’ll see how these beans compare to my previous variety.


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