Grandma Robert's Purple Pole bean

ppod(6 SE NY)July 11, 2009

If you've grown this bean, would you mind giving a quick description of it?

ÂHow many days from planting seed to snap stage? to dry seed stage?

ÂIts disease tolerance?

ÂInsect tolerance? For example, are weevils attracted to the pods?



ÂPod color (a picture would be wonderful)

ÂPod length, or number of seeds per pod

ÂPod shape: flat? round?

ÂHistory of this bean: Who was Grandma Robert, and where did she live/garden? Is family still around?

ÂOther facts?

ÂOverall impression/satisfaction with this variety?

Thank you for taking time to post the information you have (and some pictures too, if possible).

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This is a bean that I inherited from my Grandma Roberts who lived in Pelham Tennessee and died in 1999. She collected beans from people living in the area, some of whom had been growing them in their family for over 100 years. I do not know the exact history of Grandma Roberts Purple Pole. I do know that it is a very good purple podded rounded bean about 6 to 7 inches long with excellent production. It is a good fresh snap or canning variety. Grandma grew it out several times over the years to maintain seed and to have canning beans.

I still have some of her seed which were grown in 1995. About 5% of them still germinate today. This is an excellent bean that I will attempt to grow out in volume next year.


    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 9:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ppod(6 SE NY)

Thank you, DarJones, for that information. I hope you get a good productive stand next year, 'cause now that the variety is "in the news," interest for growing it will likewise increase. Whenever seeds become available, I for one would like to grow it next year.

Thanks again for posting the information.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 12:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jimster(z7a MA)

I still have some seeds of Grandma Roberts' Brown Pole Bean you sent me, Darrel. How does it compare to Grandma Roberts' Purple Pole Bean?


    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 2:51PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


They are dramatically different beans. The brown pole is pretty much a standard green pole bean albeit with a light sweet flavor that is hard to find in beans today. IIRC, the beans I sent you will produce 3 different colors of beans from the brown seed. There will be white, black, and brown beans in the offspring.

The Purple Pole Beans are similar in many ways to varieties that were common back in the 1930's but with a few traits such as round pods that are more often found in beans that date from the 1960's. Alabama #1 has many of the same traits and it dates from the 1930's.

Here are the traits:
1. round pods
2. about 7 to 8 inches long
3. some nematode tolerance
4. some heat tolerance
5. some resistance to bean rust
6. relatively short hold time on the vine, pick em young
7. relatively high 'beany' flavor
8. good canner, just the right firmness
9. Can be frozen, not as easily damaged as for example Fortex


    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 3:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

"9. Can be frozen, not as easily damaged as for example Fortex"


Fusion, I'm afraid that I'm a little puzzled by that statement. Haven't grown "Grandma Robert's" yet, so I don't know your frame of reference. But I've probably frozen 200-300 pints of "Fortex"... and it has excellent quality frozen, one of its better attributes. Stays firm, doesn't develop slippery skins, and keeps its flavor. I know its a little OT, but could you explain in greater detail?

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 3:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Fortex gets softer than I like when I freeze it zeedman. But I have to admit I haven't tried to freeze any beans in 10 years or more.


    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 4:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
cabrita(9b SoCal)

I would be really appreciative of a good purple bean. I am nor really happy with the one we have (Purple peacock) as far as flavor and texture, we love the color and ease of picking, they are so easy to find. Great flowers and vine colors too.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2009 at 7:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
rxkeith(z5 MI)


i have grown your grandmas black, and brown beans a few years now. both have done well, in the somewhat frigid north of calumet, mi. i'm down in the bean belt in the thumb now, and would love to try the purple beans once they become available.

just say when


    Bookmark   July 13, 2009 at 10:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
cowabunga1(Zone 6)

Is this the same variety as the "Granny's Purple Pod" that I received from tormato last year? I saved lots of seed from them last year but have no info.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2009 at 5:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

Finally growing a full row of these, after a small seed crop in pots last I'm really looking forward to testing their attributes. The vines are loaded now, so I should have the first picking in a few days.

I noticed something interesting about the seedlings, though, that I first referred to in another thread. Last year, one of the seedlings had 3 primary leaves, as opposed to the normal 2. The seed from that plant made up about 1/4 of my dry seed harvest. When I planted my saved seed this year, about 1/4 of the seedlings in the row had 3 or 4 primary leaves... so this trait has apparently bred true.

I am letting some of those plants go to seed. Has anyone else who has grown this bean seen this trait? Fusion, is this something you have observed, or do you think it is a new mutation? I have only rarely seen something similar in other beans, and those did not breed true.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 6:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Zeedman, it is common in these beans. I see it in about 10% of mine every year. I don't actively select for it though.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 9:54PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Storage System for Bean Collection
Hello, London Seedy Saturday was yesterday and besides...
True Heirloom Romano Pole Beans
I've been ordering Romano pole beans for the past few...
The Mayocoba Bean story
Have you heard of the controversy that evidently went...
seed germinate
Got some blackened pea seed in the bulk section a the...
Stringless pole bean?
Hello, I would like to find a good pole bean that has...
Sponsored Products
Hopson Leather Bench - Brighton Aubergine Purple
Joybird Furniture
Modern Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Garland Rugs Shazaam Purple Vogue 4 ft. x 6 ft.
$55.97 | Home Depot
Acai Circle Rings Giclee Glow Plug-In Swag Pendant
Lamps Plus
Luminescent Runner 2'3" x 7'5" - PURPLE
$329.00 | Horchow
Pink & Purple X-Pattern Rug
$179.99 | zulily
Brushed Steel Crosby Pharmacy Floor Lamp
Cost Plus World Market
Waverunner Sofa Set in Purple
$1,499.00 | LexMod
3-Channel RGB LED Controller and Dimmer Pro Plus RF Remote Control
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™