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Don’t know beans? Read this!

By Penny Stine

My gardening buddy and I love to grow new, tasty things, and when we find one that's a keeper, I like to share it with the world. Or with whoever reads this blog.
This year, we tried several different types of beans. We ordered all the bean seeds from Park Seeds, although we also ordered a cow pea seed (which look like gigantic pole beans)  from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.
We tried a yellow bush bean called a soleil. My reaction? Meh.

We ordered two different pole beans, Kwintus and Smeraldo.
Our reaction? Oh, my gosh, these are the best beans we've ever tasted! They are almost as sweet as a snap pea and three times as large. I love to eat them raw and they're delicious cooked. They're great in stir-fry, they're totally awesome with bacon and garlic. I LOVE THESE BEANS!
OK, so maybe I'm getting carried away... The only bad thing is that we cannot tell them apart. Both of them are long, flat and seriously delicious. I think the kwintus continues to produce and produce and produce some more, but the photo above is a smeraldo, so it's no slouch in production, either.
Jan's beans are doing much better than mine, but she has raised beds and she amended her soil a lot more than I did. Soil temperature in a raised bed is higher than in a plot in the ground, so although the temp in her raised bed was warm enough for bean seeds, the temperature in my garden wasn't quite there yet, which is why I had a much lower germination rate.
Next year, I'm using more compost and I'm going to wait until at least June before I plant green beans. Yes, I'm planting kwintus and smeraldo again.  

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