2013 Legumes (end of season notes)

Bush Beans: all did well, wonderful varieties, didn’t last quite as long as last year
Dried Beans (3 sisters): planted closer to correct time to climb corn, good yield, tasty
Fava Beans: badly attacked by aphids, fairly low yield of very tasty beans
Peas: only early snap-type germinated, good yield. Broadcast late bush variety Super Snappy did well – try bush type shell pea in spring next year?
Pole Beans: Romanos planted early (where shell & snow peas crapped out) did well on trellis. Kentucky Blues planted after peas (which were slow this year) were last beans in garden.
Soybeans: good yield, plants seemed to mature over a shorter period than last year

Why We Grow Soybeans - 2012 edition

I picked 107 pods from this one soy plant - that's about 321 delicious little edamame beans. I noticed that the roots of this plant were particularly loaded with nodules of nitrogen-fixing bacteria. Examining other plants, it was consistent that the largest plants with the highest yield had more nodules on their roots. Do more nodules make the plant healthier, or do healthier plants support more nodules?

Beans Update

SoybeansBeans planted the same time often yield about the same time.  However, we're getting a few early beans.  No one can tell the soybeans (several inches taller than the bush beans) had ever struggled against leaf-eating pests when seedlings.  At first glance, one could see no soybean prospects.  But hidden under the top canopy of leaves, close to the stem, one finds bunches.  Plenty to look forward to!

Persnickety Pests Prefer Soybeans

We are growing two different kinds of beans:  bush beans and soy beans.  The soy beans have been repeatedly attacked by plant-eating pests, while the bush beans have escaped unscathed.  Some weeks ago, with the beans just poking their heads out of the ground, one gardener was concerned that the leaves were being eaten already.  But these were not true leaves, but cotyledons, which come from part of the seed.  In the two weeks which followed, though, as the true leaves emerged, pests continued to eat at the soy bean plants.  I wonder what they know?  Nevertheless, the soy bean plants themselves have been producing more leaf than is being eaten.

This situation makes a point about pesticide use as well.  Yes, perhaps a heavy dose of pesticide might have eliminated any leaf-eating.  But the soybean plants are clearly thriving despite the pests.  Maybe pesticides aren't as useful or needful as advertised.

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