(Yard-long, Adzuka, Fava)
Dr. Joe Masabni
Department of Horticulture
Texas AgriLife Extension Service
Yard-long (Asparagus bean), Vigna sesquipedalis, pods may be 10 to 20 inches long, but customers prefer them 10 to 12 inches in length and pencil-sized. There are two kinds – red seeded and black seeded, with the black being preferred.
Yard-long beans are a pole bean related to blackeyed peas. They need support to produce long, straight pods. Plant seed 1/2 to 1 inch deep and 3 inches apart after soils have warmed in late spring. Place wire or twine supports in rows at seeding. Expect 8-foot tall vines.
Green pods are harvested in 50 to 60 days, or 70 days for dry harvest. For highest quality, pick daily and tie in bunches of 10 to 12 pods per bunch.
Adzuki (Winged Bean)
Adzuki (Winged bean), Phaseolus angularis, pods are shorter, tannish green beans, borne in clusters. Plants form 2-foot high bushes. Mature pods have shiny, red, round beans.
Plant seed in the spring in warm soils 1/2 to 1 inch deep, 2 to 3 inches apart with rows 30 to 40 inches apart. Plants prefer a pH range of 5.5 to 6.5 and require ample moisture.
Harvest green when pods begin to show seed development and continue at 5-day intervals. For dried beans, 120 days may be required. Dry beans are used as “beans sprouts.
Fava Bean (Dow Fu)
Fava bean (Dow Fu), Ficia faba, is not a true bean but is related to the pea or vetch. The plant is a 3- to 4-foot tall bush. Pods are large, 7 to 12 inches long, contain not more than five to seven large flat seeds and are similar to lima beans but more angular. Flowers are white; pods are light green.
Fava beans do best in moist, rich soil. Unlike green beans, they do not thrive in hot weather but like cool weather, even tolerating freezing temperatures. Seed in the fall for an early spring crop. Large seeds are planted 2 inches deep, 6 inches between plants on 40-inch row spacing. Germination takes 2 weeks. Plants respond to irrigation.
Fava beans mature in 65 days as a green bean and 90 to 100 days for dry beans. The green bean stage is harvested and handled as regular green beans and sold by the pound. Dried beans are stored and used during the off-season.