The tomato harvest is winding down in my garden, and now it’s all about the beans. (Well, and cucumbers. But that’s another story.)
Not until I sat down to type this up, did I realize I’m growing seven different kinds of beans right now. Seems excessive. Oh well! Here they are.
Beans #1 and #2
The beans in the photo above are Chinese Red Noodle beans, which is a type of yard-long bean. These can be eaten like regular green beans, you just cut them up into a few more pieces.
They’re pole beans, so they need to grow them in a spot where they have support for the vines. I’ve gotten into the habit of growing these beans on the type of wire cages that I also use for tomatoes.
While you don’t see any in this picture, I’m growing another variety of yard long bean on the same tomato cages. Those are Gita beans, which I’ve grown in previous years, and if you want to see more pictures of them, check out this photo gallery. The biggest difference is that Gita beans are green.
Why plant both? I wanted to try Red Noodle, but I had some Gita seeds left over from previous years, so I planted them together, thinking it would be pretty to have red and green beans growing together. As it turns out, I ended up with mostly Red Noodles, so that’s what’s in the picture.
Speaking of pole beans, this is the Kentucky Wonder bean. Instead of growing on wire mesh like my yard long beans, this one is supported by corn stalks, because it’s part of our Three Sisters garden plot.
So far, this growing strategy seems to be working well. The corn stalks have no trouble holding up the bean vines, which have climbed all the way to the top of the stalks and are producing plenty of beans.
Some beans are grown to eat as green beans, while others are saved as dry beans. Kentucky Wonder beans are supposed to be good for both, but since we already have plenty of green beans, we’re planning to harvest and use these as dried beans after the pods dry out. I haven’t done that before, so we’ll see how it goes!
These are Tankuro soybeans, a black seeded variety that we’re growing to eat as edamame. The black beans are supposed to be especially flavorful, so I’m looking forward to comparing and contrasting with the green kind we usually eat.
Soybeans are a bush bean (not needing a trellis or other support) and one nice thing about them is that they’re all ready to harvest pretty much at the same time. Not quite yet, but we’re getting there. This won’t be a big harvest, but enough for a meal at least.
Beans #5, #6, and #7
And this is where the bean count gets a little out of hand, because I bought “Trilogy” bean seeds this year, and that’s not a variety, it’s a mix of three varieties sold together. All three are bush beans, designed to be planted together for a mix of colors. The three varieties are Provider (green), Rocdor (yellow), and Royal Burgundy (burgundy- go figure). You can see purple and green beans in the photo above. The yellow ones are in there somewhere. I planted these beans a little too thickly and it’s kind of a tangle.
We’re eating all of these as green beans. So to speak.