Pole Snap Bean, Withner's White Cornfield (Organic)
Phaseolus vulgaris. Flat Green Pods. 70 days.
Long, green, crunchy pods dry down to produce slightly-wrinkled, white seeds. Grows well in full or partial sun. There are a lot of different bean strains with the name Cornfield, Genuine Cornfield, or True Cornfield and all of them have been grown with corn at some point. According to Carol Deppe, author of Breed Your Own Vegetable Varieties and The Resilient Gardener, Withner’s White Cornfield has a “delicious, distinctive taste,” is the best for the Pacific Northwest, and for growing in cornfields. She compared many strains and this one is earlier with a better pod set in shady conditions. Carol received this variety from Dr. Alan Kapuler who named it after Dr. Carl Withner. Grows great even when it is not in the cornfield, and is a great choice for three sisters gardens. An heirloom from Indiana.
Direct sow 1″ deep May through late June in rows that are 1′ apart. Thin seedlings to 3-6″spacing. Protect early sowings from frost. Pole snap beans are productive over a long season and only need one sowing unlike their bush snap counterparts. Requires trellising; try T-posts and bailing twine or plant a few weeks after corn or sunflowers for a natural trellis.
Shell seeds from fully dry pods by hand or by dancing on them. Winnow to clean. Test for dryness with a hammer – dry beans shatter. Some cross-pollination may occur, but beans mostly self-pollinate.