OH. This bean was sent to us from the late seed saver, Rob Hammington. We are growing several things from Rob, and are glad to be able to continue on some of the lines he had saved in his garden. Also known as Blue Lake Runner in this land, this bean has a long history in NZ and has been called a NZ heirloom as it is well adapted to our climate by now and has been grown here for many years. The term “runner” in the name is misleading as this is an annual climbing bean and not a true runner bean. This variety originated in the Blue Lakes area near Ukiah, California in the early 1900’s. The original bean was found growing all around the meadows between the Blue Lakes and Clear Lake and some say it migrated there from Native American gardens along the Upper Missouri River. As it was a virtually stringless bean the local cannery owned by farmer Adolphus Mendenhall, picked it up for use. In 1923, the variety was brought to Oregon, where they were extensively researched and trialled for fresh use. Oregon breeders eventually developed a new stringless Blue Lake dwarf bean from this variety and the dwarf version is the main bean used for canning in the US to this day. The heritage climbing variety we have is a stringless, vigorous bean producing very tasty and fresh 15cm long, slender round pods with narrow white seeds when mature. An ideal green bean and perfect for canning or pickling. Matures 80 days from direct sowing.
Sow in trays in glasshouse in September or direct in the garden when chance of frost has passed. From trays prick out when true leaves appear and transplant into fertile soil at 15-20cm spacing under a trellis for support. For autumn crop repeat sowing in January/February.