A Small Bean Harvest

On Friday, I harvested the first three beans from my small garden. A small victory!

The beans were sooo tasty!

These are Blue Lake Pole Beans. I planted a handful of seeds back in July when I set up my fall garden, and only two of them came up. I tried planting some more, soaking the bean seeds first, and none of the seeds came up that time. I don’t know why.

There are still a handful of baby beans on the plant, so I imagine I’ll get a few more beans this season. If I’m lucky and plan ahead, I might even leave one or two on the vines to mature and dry so I can save seed for next year, and try growing them again.

I consider Blue Lake Pole Beans to be a variety “string bean”: Phaseolus vulgaris Some people use the term “snap beans” (not to be confused with snap peas). String beans (or snap beans) used to have a fibrous string along the length of the bean that had to be removed before the beans were cooked or eaten. Breeders have bred that trait out of the beans. Now, I guess it makes sense to refer to these string-less beans as snap beans.

Regardless, Phaseolus vulgaris comes in both pole varieties, like Blue Lake Pole Bean, which need a trellis to grow up, and bush varieties, which stay low to the ground and don’t ned to be trellised. Aside from the growth habit, the main difference between pole and bush varieties is that bush beans set fruit sooner than pole varieties, but have a shorter fruiting season than pole beans. Six of one, half dozen of another for me right now, but something to keep in mind for the future.