Bean vine was grown at Monticello

What it is: The purple hyacinth bean vine grows as a yearly in Colorado. Originally from tropical Asia, this vibrant, rapidly growing vine is also called the Thomas Jefferson vine since he grew this plant at Monticello.

Despite the fact that numerous parts of this plant are edible, the dry seeds must be well prepared in two changes of water prior to eating. Raw dry seeds are poisonous.

Look: Intense, deep purple flowers, resembling pea or bean flowers, flower on dark-green foliage. Clusters of sparkling purple seed pods 3 to 4 inches long follow the flowers. i thought about this The vine will rush up a trellis providing vertical interest to a garden or topple down a slope as a ground cover.

Growing: Sow seeds in a bright spot mid to late May. The plant isn't really picky about soil and grows with moderate watering. It's an energetic grower - one seed can produce a vine 6 to 10 feet high in a single season. The vine flowers up until frost and will draw in butterflies and hummingbirds. Chosen as a Plant Select plant for 2006, the vine is an attractive background for roses. To learn more about Plant Select, go to www.plantselect.org.

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