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#59111 October 13th, 2006 at 12:02 AM
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the pods have grown and are still the gorgeous brilliant purple. they haven't browned up yet...how long does it take for the pods to ripen??

the temp is going to get pretty close to freezing this weekend is that going to ruin them??

#59112 October 13th, 2006 at 01:08 AM
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I haven't done hycinth beans yet but I know most take quite sometime. And I don't have any idea how the frost is going to affect them. Any chance you can throw a black plastic bag on them directly prior to the frost and then pull it off as soon as it warms up? Making sure that the bag does not tought the plant during the time it is over it?

#59113 October 13th, 2006 at 03:14 AM
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joclyn, I cut long stems of seed pods (with some foliage) and put them in a tall, clear vase of water. They will continue to ripen and make a gorgeous "bouquet." wink

#59114 October 13th, 2006 at 03:46 AM
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joclyn - I'm in the same zone as you pretty much, and my past experience is, that once a frost hits them they are done for, unfortunately!

This is the first summer in a few years that I have not grown them, but I do have plenty of seeds left if you'd like me to send you some when I send the jade cuttings?

#59115 October 13th, 2006 at 04:52 AM
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thanks, ladies!! smile

tammy, that's not a bad idea! would some kind of heavy cloth (like a blanket or comforter) do? and what about other color plastic?

i'm asking because i'm thinking of doing what rosie says for some and then covering the rest that are still on the plant...just to see which works out better!

i'd googled earlier and saw some articles about using the vine and/or pods in flower arrangements...nothing was mentioned about doing that to continue ripening the pods, tho. rosie, what kind of sunlight level do you put the vase with the cuttings in?

lynne, thanks!! i'll let you know if i need some...hopefully it won't actually freeze and/or whatever i take inside will ripen properly and i won't need any of your seeds.

since you're familiar with them and are in basically the same zone as me, do the flowers always appear in september?

i bought the plants in late june and put them in the ground...got flowers in september. i'm wondering if i start them early enough inside and get them out in the ground earlier, will the flowers start sooner? how long does it take for the seeds to sprout? i know they need to be scarified first...do you soak them too?

also, just how long DOES it take for the pods to ripen?? i was surprised at how quickly the pods formed in the first place (the flowers were only there for a few days) and thought they'd ripen just as quickly. some of the pods have been growing for over a month - even the first group that formed haven't started to change color yet.

i'm not complaining about it - they're absolutely gorgeous!!! i just thought the pods would ripen within a month - that seems to be the norm for most plants...

#59116 October 13th, 2006 at 05:18 AM
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wow - so many questions - let's see if I can get most of them... wink

Firstly... I have never scarified nor soaked my beans before planting. I usually just poke them in the ground - I do try doing this right aroung May 15th (our last frost date here) or soon after. It takes no time at all for the seeds to germinate - they get sun most of the day where I grow them.

They do take a while to flower - usually mid-August I think. The pods form pretty quickly after, but do take a long time to mature, and then brown. Some years it takes way too long to be able to harvest any beans (seeds) to save, and other years I have an overabundance! I haven't really noticed the difference as to why - but I'm sure it must have something to do with how much rain we got that summer - I'm not the best at watering them. shocked

I have tried starting them indoors, in March, along with my other seeds, but I find that they get too leggy and skinny, and do not like to be transplanted outside. So, mostly I just try and remember to put them in, mid-May.

I hope that helps. Good luck with trying to help them through the frost - I'm anxious to hear how it turns out for you.

#59117 October 13th, 2006 at 06:32 AM
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joclyn, I don't put them in sunlight at all. They usually sit on my computer desk in the window sill of a north facing window. Lots of light but no direct sun. Our approximate last frost date is April 15th so I start seeds around the middle of March and they are ready to set out plenty early. They don't have to be scarified or soaked but they do require a cold spell so store them in the fridge.
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#59118 October 13th, 2006 at 07:48 AM
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Those look great, Rosie! kissies

Not to be contrary, but I've never given my beans a cold spell - wonder if that would do anything to get earlier blooms? They all grow great for me - just are late bloomers.

#59119 October 13th, 2006 at 04:43 PM
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Lynne, I don't know that it's written in stone to refrigerate the seeds...I do it because my Mama told me to and her word was law around here for years. laugh Although they are fast growing vines and will quickly cover the area where they are planted, they are considered a mid-to-late summer bloomer. Mine usually start the first week in September and bloom until mid October. I like to sow a few seeds at the base of a couple of rose of Sharon and let them climb to their hearts content. They start blooming just about the time the ROS are finishing up so it looks kinda cool.

#59120 October 13th, 2006 at 06:05 PM
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ok - gotcha, Rosie!

It's good to know that they bloom for you around the same time as for me - I do remember that in 2001, they were blooming strong on Sept. 11 (yes that awful day!), because my mom was in the hospital and all that week I took her fresh bouquets of purple and white dahlias with purple runner bean blossoms.

I'm glad you follow your mom's sage advice. thumbup
And great idea to plant them on your ROS.
I have an arbor at the end of my driveway where I plant mine with scarlet runner beans - the combo is quite attractive. This year I didn't plant either, and the arbor was naked - I can't tell you how many people asked where the vines were! I waited too long to get them in the ground, so I just decided not to bother this time. Next year I'll do better! thumbup

#59121 October 13th, 2006 at 06:33 PM
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Hi, any kind of plastic is ok. Just make sure it is tented so it doesn't touch the vines themselves or it won't work.

About blankets and such probably not quite as good because air can get through. But I would definitely say worth a try if you don't have the plastic.

I'll keep my fingers crossed for you that you are able to save some of your pods so that they can rippen.

#59122 October 14th, 2006 at 12:35 AM
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well, i went out there last night (in the dark) with my nephew as my helper...

we got most of the pods cut off and i put them in vases. WOW! they are heavy!! they look really nice in the vases tho!!

there are still some left on the vines - we're definitely getting a frost tonight (it got down to the upper 30's last night) so i'm going to cover the remaining vines with plastic tonight...actually cutting off what i did will make it easier to cover the rest with the plastic and i won't have to worry about the plastic touching anything it shouldn't.

as i was putting them in the vases, i could see some of them are just starting to turn color...i will definitely be starting these early next year and will hopefully get blooms a bit earlier...

i have the white flower variety too (from norihaini) that i didn't plant this year as it was too late...the two twining together are going to look really nice!!

thanks for your help, everyone!!!


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