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Runner Bean 'Black Pod'

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  • Runner Bean 'Black Pod'

    I assume it is heirloom, but don't know actually know anything about them.

    This Runner bean has been very successful in my garden. Lots of pods starting off green, then they develop the most interesting reddish brown colour. These are not easily missed on the plants, as happens with green runners. High yielding too. Admittedly at 10 inches long they need a bit of stringing, but if the plants have been well watered and the beans are growing fast, they certainly can be harvested at this large size and not many are needed for a meal.

    Thank you Jayb for the seeds - an interesting variety. I was initially just fascinated by the colour, but the culinary qualities of this bean also deserve praise.


  • #2
    More purple veggies! I love purple stuff.


    • #3
      Yes they are a heritage variety and I'm so glad you like them and they have done well, I think they are lovely.

      My seeds came from HSL a couple of years ago, I copied this from my blog "I chose these runner beans as part of my selection from the Heritage Seed Library (HSL) in 2012 and they have become a favourite here the last couple of years. They may not be the longest podded beans and they do get stringy if left not picked young, yet they have a distinct charm about them that I love.

      The variety was received by HSL from Jane Bygott and is an Heirloom variety from Bridgenorth in Shropshire having been grown there for the last one hundred years. "The beans were passed to Jane by her aunt Mary, who still grew a few beans up a trellis in the corner of her garden when she was in her nineties." HSL Catalogue"


      • #4
        Originally posted by Silverleaf View Post
        More purple veggies! I love purple stuff.
        I do too


        • #5
          Thank you for the information Jayb


          • #6
            I didn't grow any Blackpod runner beans this year, but have some pictures to add.
            These are definitely on my grow list for next year.

            Blackpod flowers and beans forming with red tips already.
            1-050 by jayb 35, on Flickr

            Pods colouring
            1-008 by jayb 35, on Flickr

            Harvested seed, dark purple tones
            002 Blackpod Runner Bean Seeds by jayb 35, on Flickr

            009 Blackpod Runner Bean Seeds by jayb 35, on Flickr


            • #7
              Managed to get a root through winter, just the one, but still. Here is to earlier beans. Because the stem was cut for overwintering, any roots that survive often grow several new stems. Plenty of seeds too. Overwintering roots was just for fun.


              • #8
                Good news, glad one came through. I haven't tried to overwinter Blackpod, although I've overwintered the poly-tunnel ones the last couple of years. They are a bit later this year, first flowers are just about open, but only on a couple of plants, most are quite a bit behind.

                I've just binned my Blackpods, I delayed planting out for too long and they went to look leggy and yellow so I'll start some fresh ones off.


                • #9
                  Wow, stunning. Hardly any variety here in runners.


                  • #10
                    That's a shame, Runners are my favourites of all the green beans to eat. Do they grow well in your area? If it is ok to send you some, I'd be happy to send some over.


                    • #11
                      Thanks Jayb, but restricted import. I haven't tried runners here, but didn't like them much when i grew them in Melbourne, but i have a friend who lives in a wetter and cooler location than me, who reckons beans just don't grow well where he is. I got him some runners a couple of seasons ago - he's not a great gardener - and he was pleasantly surprised that they overwintered, resprouted, and produced pods. In the back of my mind i was thinking of getting him a bit of genetic diversity, and letting them cross up to get a bit of local adaptation.


                      • #12
                        I thought they might be.
                        I did wondered if it would be a little warm and dry for them to thrive with you, they do love lots of moisture to bring them out to their best. Sounds like your friend has them growing well, they do great from an over winter crop, it would be lovely to be able to grow them like that outdoors here.
                        In the UK runner beans are generally grown for green slicing beans and normally a long podded type which (hopefully) is stringless. But in europe often they are grown for their seed, these varieties of beans often have shorter pods which are much stringyer (sp!) at an earlier age. But they have lots of diversity and produce an abundant crop of shelling beans.
                        In the last couple of years a few companies have introduced runner varieties which have been crossed with French beans, to 'help' with eating and growing qualities, maybe these would relish your growing conditions?


                        • #13
                          Interspecific phaseolus crosses? interesting.


                          • Galina
                            Isolating and Pollinating
                            Galina commented
                            Editing a comment
                            I believe the jury is out whether these are genuine interspecies crosses. However ph coccineus and ph vulgaris certainly can and do cross. I wonder how many of our vulgaris are descended from such crosses. I had them occur in the garden a couple of times (you know it has happened when you get a French Bean with red flowers and people usually report this more with purple podded beans). After a few generations my crosses behaved more like a vulgaris, although very unstable. It is fun never knowing what you get and still enjoying hybrid vigor. Seeds can have very complex colourful patterns.

                            There are ph coccineus that self-set easier than others. You can flower bag Painted Lady for example and they self pollinate ok, others definitely do need insects. I am really not sure whether these so-called runnerbean crosses are not just types that self pollinate. They are not marketed as hybrid seed.

                            Jayb, have you grown these 'crossed' runnerbeans on and observed further generations?

                        • #14
                          Originally posted by templeton View Post
                          Interspecific phaseolus crosses? interesting.

                          Jayb, have you grown these 'crossed' runnerbeans on and observed further generations?
                          No, I saved some Firestorm seeds last year, but for me the flavour wasn't fantastic, I guess not quite beany enough. So I haven't bothered, I suppose I could chuck a few in and see. Have you grown any of these 'modern' ones on?


                        • #15
                          I have just one of these beauties growing this year, not ideal but better than none!

                          Click image for larger version

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