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Bean: Bean, Snap (Pole)

Also known as string beans, French beans or green beans, this easy crop is a mainstay of the traditional vegetable garden. They were once commonly called string beans, but most modern varieties don't have strings. Pole varieties are taller and will need some sort of support. Pole beans take longer to mature, but produce for an extended harvest for 6 - 8 weeks. These crisp fresh beans are a favorite prepared in a variety of dishes such as salads or used in soups and stews. They make a wonderful side dish when sauteed with a little oil or combined with other vegetables.

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Bean: Black-Seeded Kentucky Wonder

Germinates well in cool soil. Good flavor and texture. 6-8" pods are stringless, fleshy, and fiberless. 8-10 seeds per pod. Central Ohio heirloom. Original seed from Tom Knoche's Aunt Marge, who kept this variety alive for 60 years.

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Bean: Blue Coco

The name 'Blue Coco' refers to the bluish-purple color of the pods and the chocolate (coco) color of the seeds. Leaves are green, tinged with purple. The fleshy, slightly curved flattened pods range from 6 to 7-1/2" long, and have a nice meaty flavor. Produces under hot, dry conditions.

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Bean: Blue Lake

High yields of 6" smooth, straight, and stringless pods. This current strain shows irregularity in pod shape, varying from round to slightly flat. Vines reach 6 to 8' tall. With unbeatable flavor, Blue Lake is a long-time favorite for freezing, canning, and fresh use. This is a great variety for the home gardener or small scale grower. White seeds.

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Bean: Blue Lake Pole

High yields of 6" smooth, straight, and stringless pods. Unbeatable flavor! Blue Lake is a long-time favorite for freezing, canning, and fresh use. This is a great variety for the home gardener or small scale grower.

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Bean: Dean's Purple

Vigorous, prolific, beautiful. Plants form a gorgeous purple and green screen loaded with vivid purple beans. Save both light and dark seeds for the more tender purple pods and finer taste. Minimal bean beetle damage when other varieties were destroyed. Family heirloom from Tennessee. Supplied to SESE courtesy seedsavers Mark Schonbeck, Valerie Lyle and Dean Turley. Dean recieved the beans as a gift from a student whose family brought it to Frost Bottom, Tennessee when they settled there 150 years ago.

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Bean: French Emerite

Emerite is a long, elegant filet pole bean from one of the oldest French breeders. The pods of these classic haricot vert beans are slim, rounded, and grow 7 to 9" long. Emerite's flavor is beany-sweet and delicate, and the long pods have a crispy snap that makes them especially delicious when just briefly steamed or quickly stir-fried. Emerite's tall vines are vigorous and productive with high yields of extra-fancy pods sure to please and reward the gourmet gardener and cook.

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Bean: French Gold

These hard-to-find, handsome yellow filet pole beans were originally bred by a favorite French seedmen for their domestic market. French Gold are true haricot vert beans. Classically slim, round 7 to 9" pods with delicate, sweet flavor and a crispy snap that makes them especially choice eating. The heavy bearing, vigorous vines yield extra-fancy, juicy pods to enjoy in colorful summer meals over a long season of harvest.

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Bean: Garden of Eden

6" long, broad, flat, medium-green pods have a remarkably sweet, tender flavor, even when over mature. Cook no longer than 3-5 minutes for best flavor and texture. Seeds are brown with dark brown stripes.

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Bean: Gold Marie

Rampant vining plants produce tons of large golden pods. The gorgeous pods are ideal when harvested at 6-8 inches, but are often tender at much larger dimensions! The massive pods are a bright, clear buttercup yellow, flat and sometimes almost resemble a loose spiral shape, looking voluptuous hanging from the robust vines. This worthy variety was nearly lost commercially and was preserved by backyard seed savers.

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Bean: Grady Bailly Greasy

Highly productive white-seeded greasy bean. Very tender, with large seeds quite similar to Lazy Wife greasy bean. Polk County, NC heirloom.

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Bean: Italian Pole

White-seeded, very tender and flavorful. Extremely productive. Highly recommended. Vines bear wide, long flat pods.

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Bean: Kentucky Pole

Long, smooth 8 to 9" pods with pole habit. Yields well.

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Bean: Kentucky Wonder

Delicious 7" long, round, stringless pods with a tender texture. Use fresh, shelled, and dried. Introduced around 1864 in Kentucky, this heirloom is a longtime favorite.

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Bean: Kentucky Wonder (Old Homestead)

An old favorite. A popular variety since its introduction, though it has undergone some change over the years. Resistant to bean rust. Pods are about 8" long, stringless and tender when small. Use fresh, for canning and freezing, or as a dry bean.  Introduced before 1864, first known as 'Texas Pole'.

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Bean: Lazy Wife Greasy

Large, prolific greasy bean that sets beans in easy-to-pick clusters. In 1907 "Lazy Wife" was the third most popular bean in the US. Hairless "greasy" pods are thick, very fleshy, and stringless, remaining tender until the beans are quite large. A great shelly bean as well. 1882, NC heirloom.

Ecologically grown. Seed Saver Packet.

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Bean: Louisiana Purple Pod

Beautiful Southern heirloom. Prolific, drought-resistant vines. The entire plant is purple-green. 7" pods are bright purple and turn green when cooked (blanch indicator). Flavor very good, especially when minimally cooked and used in a cold marinade. Harvest when young and stringless. Light to medium brown seeds.

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Bean: McCaslan

Highly respected southern favorite with delicious flavor. (Introduced in 1912, though it was grown well before 1900 by the McCasland family in Georgia.) Has versatile uses as a stringless snap bean and as a green or dry shell (white-seeded) bean. The productive vines bear slightly flattened dark-green pods, 7" long. Pods are finely-grained, fleshy, and brittle. Drought tolerant vines produce all season if closely picked.

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Bean: Missouri Wonder

Old time cornfield type. Vines produce flavorful pods even under stress. The dry beans look like pintos. Introduced around 1931 and grown in corn fields, as corn stalks support them quite well.

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Bean: Potomac

A vigorous climber and heavy producer of 6-1/2" long, slightly curved, stringless snap beans of excellent quality. 5/8" long seeds are somewhat flattened, drying to a dark purple-black color. Large trifoliate leaves 6-10" across. South Carolina grower Rodger Winn calls this one of the best for hot weather production.

Introduced 1990 by SESE. Dates from the Virginia side of the Potomac River before 1860. After the Civil War it was carried west by the Barley family to Tehama County, California, where it has been grown for over 125 years.

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Bean: Rattlesnake

Especially good for sandy soil. 'Rattlesnake' is a heavy producer in the hot, humid areas of the coastal Mid-Atlantic and South coastal areas where sandy soil prevails. Steamed snaps are sweet, rich, and full flavored. Stringless when pods are small to medium size. Vines are vigorous climbers which bear 7" round pods containing buff-colored seeds splashed with brown.

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Bean: Rattlesnake Pole

This pole bean is easy to grow and produces lots of green pods that have purple streaks. Good flavor and very tender, the speckled seeds are popular in soup. This variety is great for hot, humid areas. 

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Bean: Rattlesnake & Purple Pod

The pretty patterned pods of Rattlesnake Pole Beans make delicious fresh snap beans. Or let the seeds mature and dry in the pods. Then shell them for nutty-tasting and nutritious dried bean dishes. Distinctive purple pole beans are renowned for flavor and reliability, offering long, tender, crunchy pods whose rich color stands out from the vines so they are fun and easy to harvest. Both of these treasured heirloom beans have been passed down among generations of gardeners.

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Bean: Red-Striped Greasy

5" green pods with faint striping, mottled brown seed, great fresh or dried. Appalachian heirloom. Also known as Striped Greasy Cut Short, although the seed is not squared off like a true cut short bean.

Ecologically grown. 

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Bean: Selma Zesta

Rattlesnake type - lovely olive green pods speckled with purple. Tasty pods at any stage, even when large and rather overgrown. The seeds remain fairly small inside the pods for a long period of time, and it is the “meat” of the bean that thickens, giving you a real mouthful. Small beans are excellent and delicate eaten raw, and older, thicker beans make a great meat substitute in vegetarian meals.

Heirloom from the J. C. Metze family of Newberry, SC, offered by Parks Seed in the 1960s.

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Bean: Spanish Musica

Juicy sweet and meaty with wonderful crunchy texture. Musica is the earliest, most productive pole bean you can grow. The broad, flat 7 to 9" long pods have slightly scalloped edges and unsurpassed rich flavor. Bred for demanding fresh markets in Spain and France, Musica's vigorous, robust vines climb quickly and effortlessly to bear extraordinary harvests. Keep these plump, great tasting pods picked and plants will pump out more beans than you thought possible.

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Bean: Tricolor Pole

Cascading from their tall supports, our tricolor pole beans are sentinels of the abundant summer garden. Vigorous pole beans twine up effortlessly and their vertical habit makes good use of limited garden space. These heavy bearing climbers reliably produce extended heavy harvests of delicious long gold, green and burgundy pods. The generous bounty of juicy tender pods has a sweet flavor.

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Bean: Turkey Craw

Often used as a cornfield bean. Excellent fresh flavor. Good canned. Similar to other beans for freezing and drying quality (“leather britches on a shuck”). Pods grow 3½–4 in. long and cling to the vines. Seeds are buff, frosted with brown on one end. Heirloom from VA, NC, and TN. According to folklore, a hunter shot a turkey and removed a bean from its craw; the bean was later planted and saved, hence the name Turkey Craw.