Blue Bean Plant Information
This post provides information about Blue Bean Plant Information at Great Escape Farms.
Blue Bean (Decaisnea fargesii), also known as Blue Sausage Fruit and Dead Man’s Fingers, is a unique plant that grows blue fruit that looks like a bean or sausage or a dead man’s finger. This small tree or shrub from the Himalayas and Western China generally grows 8 to 10 foot tall but may get up to 25 feet tall.
The Blue Bean is hardy in USDA hardiness zones 6 through 10 and likes full sun to partial shade. This plant dislikes drought and new growth can be damaged by late frosts. The tree resembles a small black walnut with leaves that are pinnate to three feet long, with 13-25 leaflets, each leaflet up to six inches long and four inches wide. The Blue Bean usually does not require pruning.
Blue Bean flowers in late spring or early summer with each flower having a greenish-yellow color. The flowers have six sepals and no petals and are hermaphrodite, so the plant is self-fertile.
The fruit ripens in September or October. The fruit looks like a bright blue sausage and has a white, juicy phlegm-like or gelatinous-like pulp. The seeds are not eaten, only the pulp around the seeds. The pulp has a bland to very sweet flavor with some saying it has a watermelon taste.
Propagation works well with seeds and cuttings. Online sources claim that 30 to 90 days of cold stratification is needed. The seeds I bought this year said to scarify as well. I bought quite a few seeds and I’m doing the following to see what works best: plant seeds straight in the soil, scarify only, scarify and cold stratify for 30, 60 and 90 days. I’ll post my results later in the spring.
The edible part of Blue Bean is the Jelly-like pulp eat raw out of hand. Do not eat the seeds.
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