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The 2014 Little Easy Bean Network - Get New Beans On The Cheap

Discussion in 'Fruits & Vegetables' started by Bluejay77, Apr 10, 2014.

  1. Sep 20, 2014
    marshallsmyth

    marshallsmyth Garden Master

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    Hal, Pulse, I really think that a comprehensive bean book should have full field notes with photos at various stages, for each variety, and even alternative growth patterns others get in different conditions.

    That would be an awesome work!
     
  2. Sep 20, 2014
    Hal

    Hal Deeply Rooted

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    Pulse, I keep a pretty extensive database for my vegetables especially the bean collection. I'll add the cotyledon and hypocotyl to my database, those are good suggestions and I honestly did not have them. As I've said below in response to Marshall descriptions vary from person to person so I'm starting to see the photos clearing up confusion about certain aspects.

    It certainly won't be this growing season due to non garden issues but I am considering building a database of photos for each bean in my collection as descriptions of flower color and seed shape/pattern/color vary from person to person and someone else might not agree with my database descriptions leading to confusion.
     
  3. Sep 20, 2014
    journey11

    journey11 Garden Master

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    That sounds reassuring! Thanks, Marshall! :)
     
  4. Sep 20, 2014
    aftermidnight

    aftermidnight Garden Addicted

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    When I started growing heirloom beans I started a photo album on them, I've been adding pictures of the seed I've received in trade, pictures of the pods on the vine, pictures of the pods as they start to dry down, freshly shelled (shellies) and dried seed. Haven't got all stages of all the beans I've grown but I'm working on it. So often I've gone looking for information on what a certain bean looks like and have found zilch. A closeup of the hilum and cotyledon when they emerge, maybe I should add those too.
    You all probably know this but I recently learned if when you plant your bean seed plant it on end with the little nob at the end of the hilum pointing down the seed germinates all at the same time. I tried it, it works.

    Russ the 3 seeds I planted from the vining Comtesse de Chambord BN226 are flowering now, 2 are vining, the 3rd reverted back to a bush. I'll move the tub into the greenhouse if frost threatens and finish them off in there.

    Annette
     
  5. Sep 20, 2014
    buckabucka

    buckabucka Garden Addicted

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    How can I tell when a bean is mature enough?

    In my limited experience with dry beans, I usually wait for the bean pods to get dry and crisp before picking. If the pods are leathery and still somewhat moist, I find I can take the beans out of the pod. They are usually much larger and lighter in color, but then dry out and look like the others.

    So I've got these two African bean varieties in my hoop house. We've already had a killing frost, but the hoop house plants were only nipped. I inspected today and there are no dry pods on the Solwezi (although there's a lot of beans!). I inspected one and found off-white seeds (I think what I planted was tan).

    Cape Sugar #2 had one dry pod, one yellow pod, and all the others are green. I picked the dry and yellow pod to inspect.
    image.jpg
    See how the moist beans are larger and light colored? Can I dry them indoors in the pods?
    We're supposed to have a very warm week coming up, but eventually a hard freeze will come. Do I just pick the dry ones when that day comes, or should I pick them all? Will immature beans dry properly or germinate? Just not sure what I am supposed to do..
     
  6. Sep 21, 2014
    Bluejay77

    Bluejay77 Deeply Rooted

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    If you have a hard freeze coming. Any pods that are even slightly moist with enough moisture in them that can freeze. The seeds inside will be destroyed by the freezing. Pods that have yellowed or even begining to yellow, and are leathery or rubbery can be taken indoors and be spread out on something so there is air curculation around all of them. They can be dried still inside their pods. Some seeds if removed from their pods early will shrivel when dried. Best to leave seeds in their pods and allowed to dry slowly even if it takes a month for the pods to become crisp and dry. You don't want to pile to many moist pods on top of each other as their own moisture content will promote mold and decay if handled this way. Seeds that are ready to be stored in enclosed containers will shatter into small pieces when struck with a hammer when put on a hard surface. Seeds not dry and hard enough when enclosed in a jar or some type of container will also mold and decay.
     
  7. Sep 21, 2014
    buckabucka

    buckabucka Garden Addicted

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    Thanks for your help. I will keep an eye on the weather and pull all that look ready when the freeze threatens. They have at least a week of warm weather coming this week.

    Would a dehydrator dry the pods too quickly? I have one, so if that would be appropriate I could use it on a low temperature. I have noticed shriveling on a pod I shelled too early, so from now on, I'll leave them in the pods until dry.
     
  8. Sep 22, 2014
    PhilaGardener

    PhilaGardener Deeply Rooted

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    Here outside of Philly, we generally have humid weather in the Fall and a fair bit of moisture in most years. I wind up picking pods as they yellow/brown and shelling them before mold takes off. I've even had problems with seed germinating in the pods as they don't dry fast enough. I wouldn't recommend force drying them with a dehydrator, but use a fan to keep the air moving and consider shelling a few to check on them as they dry. Good luck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2014
  9. Sep 22, 2014
    buckabucka

    buckabucka Garden Addicted

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    Thanks. Some of the other dry beans I tried this year got some mold on the pods, but the African beans in the hoop house look great, -just not ready yet!
    I imagine by the time a hard frost comes, we'll be building a fire in here, so the air will be quite dry.
     
  10. Sep 22, 2014
    Bluejay77

    Bluejay77 Deeply Rooted

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    With your dehydrator I would be concerned about applying heat. A little too much heat and you kill all the seed. It won't grow anymore. Best thing to do is let seed dry slowly like mother natures has done it for thousands of years. It's not nice to rush mother nature.
     

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