Provides color all season.Purple stems, lilac-rose blossoms, and shiny 2–3" magenta pods. While all parts of the plant are edible, we recommend boiling the mature seeds twice before eating. Used in Asian, Thai, and Indian cuisine. Blooms and pods are useful as cut flowers; pods may be dried. Also known as bonavist-bean, and lablab-bean. Tender perennial in Zones 9–10. Best grown as an annual elsewhere.
•Edible Flowers: Flowers can be eaten raw or steamed, and can be used as a garnish for salads and desserts. Flavor is mild, bean-like, and sweet. A favorite in our taste tests.
Ht. 10–20′. Avg. 100 seeds/oz. Packet: 15 seeds.Caution:Mature seeds must be boiled before eating. Like most soybeans, they contain a trypsin inhibitor that is broken down by heat as well as a cyanogenic glucoside that is leached out by the cooking water.
DAYS TO GERMINATION: 5-12 days at 65-70°F (18-21°C).
SOWING: Transplant: Sow 4-6 weeks before last frost. Plant 2 seeds 1/2" deep in individual containers. Thin to one plant per pot, leaving the strongest, most purple seedling. Harden off and transplant outside after the last frost. Direct seed: after last frost, sow about 6 seeds per foot, 1/2" deep. When the seedlings have true leaves, thin to 12" apart. Trellis or other form of support is necessary.
LIGHT PREFERENCE: Sun.
SOIL REQUIREMENTS: Moderately fertile soil.
PLANT SPACING: 12".
HARDINESS ZONES: Zones 9-10.
HARVEST: Fresh: Harvest when 80% of flowers on stem are open.
Pods: When 1/2 on stem are shiny and firm to touch.
Edible flowers: Harvest when flowers are fully open.
USES: Cut flower. Seeds, young leaves, and flowers are completely edible. Quick cover for arbors, walls, fences, and trellises.
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Dolichos lablab
ALTERNATE NAMES: Bonavist-bean, lablab-bean