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Here Come the Flowers!


When you're gardening, the first signs of life are the most exciting. No matter how many times you plant a seed in the ground, it's never gets old. The prepping of the soil, the moisture and the care really do help create life. The fact that you had some part of the equation is a thrill unavailable via Mastercard. There's just nothing you can buy that equals this feeling.


The next great payoff is the first blooms. My beans in the ground are coming along nicely but Napa's cool nights and this years' late frosts have kept the soil temperatures a little low. My beans in pots however have been sending shoots out and as of yesterday, the first flowers appeared.


I've made a tee pee with four bamboo stakes for this black runner bean (Phaseolus coccineus). I found the seeds in Puebla, between bites of cemitas. Imagine a runner cannellini or cellini only with a black skin. Most runner beans like cooler weather so with any luck they'll be even bigger grown up here than they were in Mexico.


What's really cool is most runners have a scarlet red flower. These black beans have a pinkish white blossom. Maybe I'm nuts but think they're worth growing just for the look of the plant and flowers.

As a reference point, I planted these around the 10th of May, so in a pot, blossoms arrived just over a month after planting.

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