Long beans - what is your sweetest one??

dancinglemons(7B VA)October 11, 2011

Hello all,

I wonder if all of the long bean growers here would recommend their sweetest variety. I grew Liana, Oriental Wonder and Chinese Red - all were good but Oriental Wonder has been the most prolific. Now I want to branch out and try a long bean that is sweet. The OW's are mildly sweet and very beany. I found Liana to be good bean flavor but not sweet and Chinese Red was OK but temperamental in my garden.




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    Bookmark   January 28, 2012 at 9:14PM
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zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

Well, sweetness is a relative term when discussing yardlongs. Even the sweetest will not approach the sweetness of a snap bean. The sweetest I've tried, though, were "Chinese Red Noodle" (widely available) and "Galante" (a commercial variety from the Philippines). Both are also extremely firm, so they hold up to cooking well.

There is an interesting trial of long beans here. While very informational, it only covers seed from two of the largest suppliers of long beans. They rated "Black Stripe" from Evergreen Y. H. as the sweetest, but it was also late, and had a relatively low yield.

I wish some of the varieties carried by Kitazawa had been tested as well, especially since the trial was conducted in California - where Kitazawa is located. Perhaps they were not offering as many varieties at the time.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2012 at 12:15AM
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Are not yard beans a running pea?
Mine are & I cook them as peas.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 8:08PM
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zeedman Zone 5 Wisconsin

I guess technically yardlongs would be "running peas", given that most varieties are aggressive climbers. However, they were bred/selected for different purposes... and due to their long pods, do poorly if left to run on the ground. Too much snail & insect damage.

Yardlongs were bred for the length & tenderness of their immature pods, much as snap beans were bred for that purpose. They are, IMO, not as good used as seeds. They are more difficult to shell than peas bred for use as seeds, and the seeds often have clinging membranes which are difficult to remove. You can eat them as peas - I have - but the ones I tried were nothing special. There are many varieties of cowpea which are much better suited for use as shell peas.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2012 at 10:50PM
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zeedman, I have to agree.
I am new to yard beans & thought I was getting a 36" string bean.
But the vine looked like my Black eyed peas.
I used them like snap peas(immature pea pods, that are mixed with whole peas).
But the biggest surprise, is the black butter beans.
I think I have seen it all now......maybe.:-)

    Bookmark   January 31, 2012 at 3:53PM
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