As most folks know I really like rare old plant types and I collect a number from Europe but I also have a love for old Canadian or N.A. heritage plants with a special interest in those of indigenous background. If they were from any of the local area’s of Ontario or Quebec even better.
Flagg Bean is a rare bean that also goes by the name Skunk or Chester in some circles. Got to love when a bean has three different names 🙂 It is considered a Iroquois pole bean that has been around a long time, it produces really lovely black and white beans with the odd white bean or the odd mostly black bean. It is a pole bean and it will climb 12 feet if you let it, have a very strong structure for these, you can bring it down to more standard five or six feet in height but it will need to be helped to grow sideways etc
Its a very short season bean, I have seen as short as 80 days listed or as long as 90 days listed, I say that is about right considering the weather and such.
This bean has been grown on the farm in normal years, drought years and flood years and it has proven itself going strong in all the ways.
I do eat the very young green beans here at the farm but once they are of size, you will find them tough if you want to fresh eat them or freeze them, however I find they outstanding as a pickled bean when used young and tender and of course as a dry bean for soups and stews! Very heavy producers, I have always offered them very rich soil to grow in with reasonable drainage in a normal year.
I didn’t mean to do this but I am now on my second year of overwintered beans on the vine, I left the vines and the last beans on two years ago and they overwintered nicely in 2016, I thought huh and just for kicks planted them out in 2017 to see if they would grow and grow they did.. last fall, we picked lots of fresh green beans and I have lots of seed left from my proper harvest of them in 2016 so I told hubby just leave them, we will get to it in the spring 2018
Well, there was ton’s of dried pods on the vine, looking really nice with full clean and plump looking beans in them.. once we picked, cleaned and sorted, we got 2 pounds 11 oz of really nice second year overwinter Flagg or Skunk Pole Bean Seeds. More then I will need for planting this year but I will do some to see if they will grow and overwinter here on the farm for year 3.