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Need help IDing Heirloom bean seeds from before 1939

Posted by treeguy123 AL 7a (My Page) on
Mon, Jul 7, 08 at 15:09

A woman gave these bean seeds to my great grandmother in 1939, and in later years she never could find any place to buy these type of bean seeds anywhere. Is this a lost variety of bean? They probably go back to the 1800s or maybe farther. Does anybody know what kind of bean this is? I believe it's some type of pole bean. I've never grown them before though, I will this year.
Any help would be appreciated.

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RE: Need help IDing Heirloom bean seeds from before 1939

Perhaps some of these links will help you. Good luck!

Mennonite Purple Stripe - An old heirloom from the Waterloo Mennonites of Waterloo, ON. The long pods are white with purplish mottling and are excellent as snaps or for dry beans. Very productive and early for a pole bean. (70 days for snaps)

Peregion - An heirloom bean from Oregon that can be used as a snap when small or as a dried bean later on. The small oval seed is beige with dark stripes and some seed is dark brown or black. The dried beans keep their color when cooked and are excellent as a soup bean or for baking. The plants produce quite a bit of runners and would do better with some support. Planting this bean at the base of corn stalks would be ideal. Very productive. (95 days for dried beans) Bush.

Refugee - A very old bean believed to have been brought to England by French Huguenots. This bean was also canned commercially in the early 1900’s in Ontario. The 1908 McKenzie Seed Catalog states that the Refugee bean is “An immense producer and valuable for pickling.” The green pods are striped and contain small pinkish beige seed mottled with black. Some dark seed among the others is normal. A very productive and early bush bean. Can be used as a very tasty snap bean when young or as a dried bean. Very dependable and disease resistant. One of the most productive beans available. (80 days for dry beans) Bush.

Painted Lady (1600s) - Runner beans were introduced into England in 1633. A bicolor sort was one of the varieties known at the time. The Painted Lady Runner Bean has red and white bicolor flowers that are very ornamental. As with the other Runner Bean varieties, hummingbirds also are attracted to these flowers. (115 days for dry beans) Pole.

Heritage Plants Database - Seeds of Diversity Canada
Bean - Varieties Sold in Canada

Southern Seed Legacy

South Carolina Foundation Seed Association -- Heirloom List

John Coykendall who lives in Knoxville, TN is the most knowledgeable person I know who is an expert on Bean varieties. Read this article which was published at the University TN.

RE: Need help IDing Heirloom bean seeds from before 1939

Treeguy, E-mail me for some personal information.

RE: Need help IDing Heirloom bean seeds from before 1939

They look alot like some of our beans. Do you get any that are black with brown on them, out of the same pods as the other ones? Our beans are bush beans & are very good tasting. Sherry

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