2023 Little Easy Bean Network - Beans Beyond The Colors Of A Rainbow

Zeedman

Garden Master
Joined
Dec 10, 2016
Messages
3,897
Reaction score
11,958
Points
307
Location
East-central Wisconsin
this bothers me too Eleanor -
How close are the spacings I can get away with?
Which plants are most likely to cross?
and can I train bumbles etc to make the crosses I dream of?
You can 'train' bumbles not to make crosses - to a point - by the use of barrier crops. Those are flowering plants grown between different rows/poles of the same species, to give bees places to "wipe their feet" as they work their way across the garden. The barrier crop should bloom before or at the same time as the beans, and be a better pollen or nectar source... which isn't difficult, because beans by comparison are poor at both. Other beans (such as limas & runner beans) are better nectar sources & flower freely over a long period; so they double as good food-producing barrier crops. All members of the gourd family (squash, cucumbers, luffa, and the bitter melon in my avatar) are great pollen sources, and are even more effective if trellised. So are long-blooming flowers such as cosmos, zinnia, and flowering mallow, interspersed between the rows. I've used roughly the same spacing & population sizes as @Eleanor ; and using barrier crops, have seen very few crosses (from my saved seed, none this year).

Two caveats. Barrier crops work best with bumbles & other bees which are not species discriminant in their feeding habits. Honey bees tend to feed on only one species at a time; so if there is a hive near you, barrier crops may be less effective. Also, some beans - such as "Goose" and some of the Appalachian beans - have proven to be more susceptible to crossing.

You can further minimize the chances of getting a cross by saving pods from the earliest flowers (when bees were less active). And space permitting, it is also advantageous to plant multiple small rows rather than one long row and harvest seed only from the center row.

and can I train bumbles etc to make the crosses I dream of?
Well, crosses are difficult to predict. One would think that a cross between two good snap beans would also be a good snap bean; but before I used isolation for beans, I had a few such crosses - and they were all inferior to either of the parents. Keep in mind that whenever you are selecting for something, you are selecting against something else - and apparently unrelated traits are often tied together genetically. The only crosses I would try to save would be those that demonstrated exceptional productivity. I'm hoping to find time to work on a pole bean cross from several years ago, which yielded over a pound of seed from a single plant.
 

jbrobin09

Chillin' In The Garden
Joined
Jul 17, 2023
Messages
28
Reaction score
97
Points
48
Location
Alberta, Canada zone 3
The tiny hiccup with the labels set me back a day, but everything is packed up, sealed and ready to be shipped @Bluejay77. I also packed up a second box, mostly containing packets from the bonus beans you sent with the network beans. I will mail the second wrapped box a week after I mail the first.

Thank you so much @Bluejay77 for such a great opportunity to expand my bean collection. 🫶 I have gotten so many great new beans from you! When I was packing them up I got to swoon over them more closely than I have yet. Those Stephano D'Aventi Borlotti beans were so HUGE that the '50' barely fit inside the packet! The Dead Man's Tooth were surprisingly large too for a kidney type. I'm quite pleased with how all the beans turned out. Between the azomite, the kelp meal, the greensand, wood ash and the electric fertilizer I think I'm finally hitting my stride with growing beans.

I contacted Mr. Dirix in Belgium and put in my first seed request! Pretty excited about that. He was very kind. I don't have a paypal account so he let me pay in CAD and mail it. I hope it arrives in Europe safely. 🤞 And I put an order in with Mandy's Greenhouse too which will soon be here. Poroto Huancabamba, Piet’s Special, Oja de Cabra will be fun ones to try. All I need to buy now is more land so I can grow it all. Or start guerilla gardening in the neighbours backyard. :lol:
Ok, I searched out Mr. Dirix and found his listings for 2024…amazing! I’ve never ordered seed from Europe though- is it something you have to arrange through Canada customs in some way?
 

flowerbug

Garden Master
Joined
Oct 15, 2017
Messages
16,092
Reaction score
24,248
Points
417
Location
mid-Michigan, USoA
...
Well, crosses are difficult to predict. One would think that a cross between two good snap beans would also be a good snap bean; but before I used isolation for beans, I had a few such crosses - and they were all inferior to either of the parents. Keep in mind that whenever you are selecting for something, you are selecting against something else - and apparently unrelated traits are often tied together genetically. The only crosses I would try to save would be those that demonstrated exceptional productivity. I'm hoping to find time to work on a pole bean cross from several years ago, which yielded over a pound of seed from a single plant.

heterosis (or hybrid vigor) is one thing that i've seen very often in the first season an outcross appears and then the subsequent plantings go back to less production in enough cases that i do not count an increase as certain until i've grown the bean out multiple seasons. i have two beans from this year that exibited that to start with but i will remain a bit reserved until i replant.

for me Monster was one of those beans that showed up and exhibited heterosis yet only a few of the children were stable and partially as productive (which is ok as i just want moderate production anyways).

so be ready to put in several years to evaluate and then take into consideration the weather and other planting and growing conditions. and also keep an eye out for further crossing which may give you what you're after.

if you can direct cross plants using multiple pods and mark them for seed saving i think that would speed up your chances of getting what you are after but i'm not able to do that here. chaotic methods and nature doing her thing are ok with me, but it sure does take more space and time. :)
 

heirloomgal

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jan 17, 2021
Messages
3,680
Reaction score
11,839
Points
235
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
Ok, I searched out Mr. Dirix and found his listings for 2024…amazing! I’ve never ordered seed from Europe though- is it something you have to arrange through Canada customs in some way?
Lucky for us, no, nothing needs to be arranged. We're free here to receive seeds from abroad with no problems whatsoever. The poor state of our dollar is the only real downside, so the exchange is a bit and the shipping will cost about 20 dollars (13 Euros) if the package is over 100g and under 350g. But considering how far they'll travel it's not too bad.
 

Artorius

Deeply Rooted
Joined
Oct 29, 2019
Messages
467
Reaction score
2,362
Points
175
Location
Holy Cross Mountains, Poland
@Bluejay77
I managed to bag all my network beans today. Tomorrow I will correct the inventory list, print the missing labels and send the parcel on Tuesday. It will contain 30 packets in total.

DSCN4203.jpg
 

Artorius

Deeply Rooted
Joined
Oct 29, 2019
Messages
467
Reaction score
2,362
Points
175
Location
Holy Cross Mountains, Poland
Ok, I searched out Mr. Dirix and found his listings for 2024…amazing! I’ve never ordered seed from Europe though- is it something you have to arrange through Canada customs in some way?

Parcels from Poland reach recipients in Canada without any problems, so probably the same from Belgium.
 

Blue-Jay

Garden Master
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
3,180
Reaction score
9,779
Points
333
Location
Woodstock, Illinois Zone 5
Halados Grandos - Pole Dry. Obtained from Lisa Bloodnick of Appalachin, New York at the 2018 Appalachian Seed Swap in Pikeville, Kentucky. I grew it for the first time this year year. It did fairly well considering it got watered mostly from my watering can. Seed harvest 8.70 ounces (246 grams)

Hashuli - Pole Dry Lovely bean from the country of Georgia. Grown in 2022 then again this year. A few nice quality seeds is all I harvest total of 2.45 ounces (69 grams)


Halados Grandos.jpgHashuli.jpg
Hallados Grandos - Pole Dry...................................Hashuli - Pole Dry
 
Last edited:

Beanmad Nanna

Attractive To Bees
Joined
Nov 7, 2023
Messages
43
Reaction score
141
Points
58
Location
Suffolk, UK (zone 8a) (microclimate)
Yes, I had one control area and I also had a patch of corn half in & half out from an antannae range so I could gauge it that way in one other bed. I was actually pretty blown away by the results in fertility, and equally so the slugs and cutworm evaporation. I used 1 antennae per 30 foot diameter. The control area was a bust, at least in 2023.
I've seen it demonstrated, dunno why haven't had a go myself. Maybe this year is when i convert ... copper and slugs I have used, but not as antennae. that could be very helpful indeed
 

heirloomgal

Garden Addicted
Joined
Jan 17, 2021
Messages
3,680
Reaction score
11,839
Points
235
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
Halados Grandos - Pole Dry. Lovely bean from the country of Georgia. Obtained from Lisa Bloodnick of Appalachin, New York at the 2018 Appalachian Seed Swap in Pikeville, Kentucky. I grew it for the first time this year year. It did fairly well considering it got watered mostly from my watering can. Seed harvest 8.70 ounces (246 grams)

Hashuli - Pole Dry Grown in 2022 then again this year. A few nice quality seeds is all I harvest total of 2.45 ounces (69 grams)


View attachment 62059View attachment 62060
Hallados Grandos - Pole Dry...................................Hashuli - Pole Dry
It’s amazing how much Halados Grandos looks like Lavender Swirl. Is Halados earlier than LS? LS is so late for me, so maybe HG would do better?
 

Blue-Jay

Garden Master
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
3,180
Reaction score
9,779
Points
333
Location
Woodstock, Illinois Zone 5
It’s amazing how much Halados Grandos looks like Lavender Swirl. Is Halados earlier than LS? LS is so late for me, so maybe HG would do better?

I'm not sure that Hallados is from Georgia. I think I was thinking about Hashuli when I type that I think I will edit that out. I'm not sure what the origin of Hallados Grandos is but your are right I was thinking the same thing this summer that it looks just like Lavender Swirl
 

Latest posts

Top