Seed List

Navy Bean Edmund

Dwarf French Bean Navy Bean Edmund

This variety came to us from RHS Harlow Carr. Navy beans were first cultivated to sustain Australian forces during WWII and are the type used as 'baked beans'. The compact (around 20cm), branching plants have white flowers and short green pods with small round beans. The pods are held free of the ground, reducing slug or rotting problems. Principally a drying bean, but can be eaten as a green bean too.

10 seeds
French bean
Dwarf
Green varieties

O'Driscoll

Climbing French Bean O'Driscoll (flower)

These bicoloured beans were given to our donor, Mr O'Driscoll, by his father, who had grown and saved them for many years. A vigorous and prolific variety, it is earlier than many French beans. Seed Guardian Ian Thomas describes them as “a pleasure to grow”. Flat, green pods flecked with purple follow mauve flowers. Can be eaten as whole pods when young, or left to mature and shelled.

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Coloured varieties
Organic

Parfree's Dragon Tongue

Dwarf French Bean Parfree's Dragon Tongue seeds

Colin Parfree obtained this variety from his neighbour, who had in turn been given them by a friend who travelled extensively in China, where they are thought to have originated. Compact, sturdy plants produce green pods with thin, deep violet stripes. An easy care, easy grow bean that could be used in pots for decorative purposes. The young pods are tender and tasty, and the dried beans have excellent flavour.

10 seeds
French bean
Dwarf
Coloured varieties

Pea Bean Inca

Climbing French Bean Pea Bean Inca

Our donor acquired these seeds from a street market in Inca, Majorca that sold only local produce. Growing to around 1.8-2m in height, this variety produces delicate, cream flowers followed by large, flat pods containing white and burgundy bicoloured beans. The young beans are not stringy and have a mild flavour. Dried beans make an interesting addition to soups and stews.

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Green varieties
Organic

Percy Parker

Climbing French bean Percy Parker

Our donor was given these seeds by a friend who had, in turn, been given the beans by Percy Parker himself. Percy had grown this variety since World War Two in Barcombe, East Sussex. Unfortunately, Percy passed away, but his name lives on in this lovely bean. The strong and productive plants have white flowers followed by long, straight, flat, stringless green pods containing small, white beans.

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Green varieties
Limited Stock

Poletschka

Climbing French Bean Poletschka

Named after the donor's family, as this black seeded bean originated in their village of Kostilnyky, Western Ukraine. Prolific, stringless and crops over a very long period of time. Eat fresh when small and use as a dried bean when mature; delicious in every respect!

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Green varieties

Polish Climbing

Climbing French Bean Polish Climbing

Originally from Poland, though acquired by our donor at a Belgian seed swap. Lilac flowers are followed by slender, 'snake-like' pods, bright green streaked with black. Matures quickly; use fresh, rather than as dried beans, as the pods are tasty and stringless. Seed Guardian Ann Rutter was suitably impressed, she says, “They wouldn't look amiss in the flower garden.”

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Coloured varieties
Organic

Romanian

Climbing French Bean Romanian mature pods

Originally from Vrancea in the East of Romania, these productive beans are hardy with good disease resistance. Traditionally sown amongst maize, which act as a support for the vines to climb. They are then harvested before the maize and used dried, but without soaking.

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Coloured varieties
Organic

Romano

Climbing French bean Romano

This ex-commercial variety was deleted from the National List sometime in 2007, and thankfully passed to us before it was lost forever. Dating back to at least 1972, it was supplied by Thompson & Morgan who describe it in their 1995 catalogue as, “Long, tender, meaty and stringless 6-10 inch pods liberally loaded with unbeatable flavour. Heavy yield, good for freezing.” Our Guardians agree, and also note the strong, tall, vigorous plants with lush foliage, so provide some sturdy support!

10 seeds
French bean
Climbing
Green varieties

Royal Red

Dwarf French Bean Royal Red copyright Sandra Slack

Bred at Prosser, Washington State, USA for the USDA, this variety was developed for its disease resistance. Its popularity was limited as its dark purple, almost black, beans were too plump and large for canning, despite having a lovely rich, beany flavour. Produces strong and prolific plants which may require some support.

10 seeds
French bean
Dwarf
Green varieties