Beans are one of the easiest vegetables to grow. Here are a few varieties I’ve had success with.
Pole snap beans
If you are limited for space, or want to maximize your garden’s output, you can’t go wrong with pole beans.
Blue lake stringless beans and Rattlesnake pole beans are seriously prolific. I planted perhaps four plants of each this year, and have been getting a couple of handfuls of beans from them every night for a couple of weeks. Both are tender and delicious; the rattlesnake beans can be eaten young or left to mature into shelling beans.
Bush snap beans
Bush beans are great if you don’t want to deal with vines climbing everywhere.
If you like colourful beans, Royal burgundy beans (purple), Kinghorn wax beans (yellow), or Red swan beans (pink) are all good producers, though they can’t beat the pole bean varieties mentioned above.
Dried / shell beans
Here, for me, is where the fun starts–lots of colourful little beans that you can add to soups, chilis, veggie burgers–you name it.
- Black turtle beans are adorable, tiny black beans. You can see them in the photo at the top of the page. Each plant produces many beans; each bean contains around 6-10 seeds.
- Orca beans look like the name suggests they would–like little orcas.
- Ojo de Tigre beans are the orangish beans in the top photo with the pink whorls on them. They are perfect for refried beans and the like.
- Rattlesnake beans, as mentioned above, also produce delicious brown and white spotted beans.
- I planted kidney beans from a bag of dried beans that I bought at the grocery store. A few generations later, they’re still going strong (though that may not be the case with all store-bought seeds).