Seeds, Roots and Plants for Sale|
Buy Perennial Seed Set: True Comfrey, Stinging Nettle, White Yarrow, Bronze Fennel.
Email for shipping discount if you order more than one product. Kelp helps seeds germinate.
Heirloom October Beans|
Heirloom, heritage variety. The real, old-timey October bean.
Some people call beans "October beans" that aren't really October beans. These are authentic October beans (fall beans).
Original seeds were given to me by a southern Appalachian local who has been handing them down in her family for generations. May originally be from the Cherokee.
The shelled beans are medium-sized, cream and pink.
This photo is the shelled, dried beans you receive.
Organically grown. Open pollinated (OP). Never commercialized. No GMO (not Genetically Modified).
Some October bean varieties are tough but these beans are very tender. You can eat the pods.
No strings. October beans are in the Cranberry bean family.
This photo is a bean that is starting to turn red. Good to eat now or later.
"I just placed an order for some October beans. So happy to find the genuine kind!" -Polly, Huntsville, Alabama
Your Own Old-Fashioned Beans
Harvested from my garden in western North Carolina in the mountains. Shelled by hand.
Seeds are harvested in the fall and then dried.
Pods can be dried and then shelled by hand or by flailing with a stick. Or shell by hand when the pod is partially dry. After shelling, dry some more and then store.
This photo is the same group of beans as the above photo, later in the season. A beautiful red.
"I'm very happy I came across your site! My mother-in-law talks about October beans often as a real treat in the corn fields." -Andrew, Raliegh, North Carolina
Tasting, Fun to Grow|
This photo is a young green pod and a mature red pod. Both are ready to eat.
"My husband is from Bristol Tennessee and LOVES these beans. We can't find any so we want to grow some." -Julia, Franklin, Tennessee
"I am very excited to receive the seeds. And get ready to plant them in my above-ground garden. Thank you for having quality products." -Donna, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
Old-Timey October Pole Beans|
Easy to grow pole bean. Dual purpose (eat pod or just shelled bean).
You can eat the young, green pod like a snap bean. Or shell beans (shellies) late summer and fall. Then dry them for use all winter.
This is a fun photo with the pods at all stages of development with the youngest on the left, progressing to greater maturity.
Growing Fall Beans: Easy to Grow
Sow after danger of frost is over (late spring, usually late May). Soak beans for 1-2 hours before sowing.
Sow 1 inch deep, 6 or more inches apart in rows 3-4 feet apart. One plant can take up a lot of space. Growing plants several feet apart gets you a lot of beans.
Germinates in about 10 days. Thin to 1 foot or more apart. Beans first start becoming ripe in about 90 days. They keep producing until frost.
Likes full sun. Likes soil pH 5.5-6.5 but is not picky. It does not need rich soil. The roots are shallow.
This photo is an October bean seedling.
All beans are almost always self pollinating. Cross pollination is very rare. If you want pure seed to replant, grow October beans about 12 feet from other bean varieties. Though growing as close as 3 feet would probably still be OK.
This photo is only one plant. The trellis is over 6 feet tall. You can tell the size by comparing it to the garden hose on the ground. It was taken in August.
"I am a repeat customer for October beans and love these!" -Deb, Norfolk, Virgnia
"Friends shared October beans with our family a few years ago and we fell in love with the taste of them." -Alisa, Richmond, Virginia
Tender, Pole Beans that Really Produce|
Pole (climbing) beans need a fence or trellis to grow on. Or grow with corn and the bean plants climb the corn stalk.
Some October beans are bush. These are pole.
An annual that matures in 10-12 weeks (65-84 days). The plant produces beans until first frost in fall.
A very good, prolific producer. You get a lot of beans from one plant.
This is part of the same plant above with the photo taken in September. Lots and lots of beans.
October Beans Southern Style|
The traditional Appalachian way to cook them is to shell the beans. Then season with a piece of ham hock or fatback (salted pork fat). Cook slowly (low boil) with onions and herbs until they are creamy and soft. They are best served with cornbread.
They have a rich, earthy, robust, chestnut-like flavor. I love them.
Young pods are great cooked too. Also good in soup, salad, and casseroles.
"I have been trying for years to find the beans that my Grandmother used to cook when we were visiting. She lived in East Tennessee, and the seeds had been handed down through her family for a long time. She cooked them both as snaps and dried beans, and they had the most amazing flavor, an order of magnitude better than the tasteless crap available these days." Carter, Milledgeville, Georgia
Eat Them at All Stages of Growth|
Sometimes called Speckled Cranberry, French Horticultural, or corn field bean. This is a very rare variety of October bean. I'm happy I was able to save it.
The pods start out green and as they mature they turn a light red, bright red, purplish-red, purple, then brown.
October beans can be eaten at all stages of development (green snap or shelly/shelled).
This photo is the young pod at various stages of development. Cute little baby beans.
"A dear, 75-year-old friend has asked me to grow these for her." -Victoria, Sparta, Tennessee
A Good Homestead Bean Plant
A very good bean for a self-sufficient homestead.
Easy to grow, good producer, easy to shell, no strings, tasty.
"Thank you so much for growing enough of these special beans to share." -Amy, Boone, North Carolina
a Heritage Bean|
A popular bean among old timers. Grown for generations. Join us in preserving this variety.
This photo is the pink flower the bean plant produces.
"I grew October beans years ago (maybe 35 years?), and I would wait til the pod would have a leathery feel, then I would put them into a quart jar, 1 teaspoon salt, and water and pressure cook them. I did about 50 quarts. I'm here to tell you they are the best. I have not been able to find them since….so I'm thrilled to have found you." -Jude, Arlington, Washington
Beans: The Tradition Continues|
This photo is Nancy in front of her October bean plants.
"I've looked for this bean for years. My Father (lived in Virginia all his life) grew October beans that were so tasty. I live in Florida and people around here never heard of October beans. Daddy always had cornbread and onions with his beans and teas or buttermilk to drink. Oh my, do I remember those days, when I was growing up in Virginia." -George, Sarasota, Florida
Contact me if you are ordering more than one type of seed. I can discount shipping.
All seeds are shipped by First Class or Priority Mail through the Post Office. There is no pick up at the farm.
For survival farming in hard times in zones 5/6/7, see my Western North Carolina Farm and Garden Calendar.
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Nantahala Farm in the Mountains of Western NC
Macon County (close to Cherokee, Graham and Swain Counties)
Topton, North Carolina 28781
No pickup at farm except for goats. Everything else is mailed.
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