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Tepary Beans! The crop of the FUTURE!

Posted by Stacey Hubbs on

What up ma seeders? 

So, this blog is going to teach you all about tepary beans...because when I ask people if they'd tried growing tepary beans before, they are like "no...what are tepary beans???" Then i'm all like "oh snap! tepary beans are the crop of the future!" so yea, let me divulge their innermost awesomeness to you all... behold....

Okay, so basics first...tepary beans are scientifically named phaseolus acutifolius. These cute little suckas originated in Mexico and the Southwest US in ancient times are still very popular there today. They are EXTREMELY drought tolerant and hardy, able to survive in the desert and in desert-like conditions (hello...2016...? lol) They are the most drought tolerant legume that one could possibly grow, and one of the most drought tolerant crops in the world. The plants range from very small bush types - no taller than a foot- to long wild types with sprawling vines. No matter the vine type, the flowers are small, and adorable and so is the foliage. The beans are borne in small thin papery pods which dry very fast, so be careful to harvest regularly if you live in a climate wetter than the desert to avoid harvesting moldy pods. Tepary beans come in a range of colours, many of them mottled and earthy looking. I never seem to have enough beans to cook because I'm trying to save their seeds, but you can just treat them like any other dried bean in the kitchen. For some interesting recipes (Tepary Bean Hummus! YES!) visit Native Seed Search I feel like we have the basics for the reasons that I believe that Tepary beans are "the crop of the future"...

*The plants are basically indestructible. (for real) 

*They require very little attention and input. (if you ignored them completely after'll still get a decent crop of beans) 

*They are super high in protein. 

*They look like adorable little micro-dinosaur eggs. (so, like if dinosaurs were an inch tall...they would lay these for eggs. for sure. so cute.) ***THIS IS CLEARLY THE MOST IMPORTANT REASON TO GROW THIS CROP***

So, now for the sexy bean photos...

tepary bean                       *Blue Speckled Tepary Bean* 

This is a very special rare bean that resembles a small pebble with blue speckles and tan variations. Originally from the Tohono O’odham people. Tohono O’odham translates to “desert people.” Previously, they were known as the Papago people, which translates to “tepary bean eaters.” Tepary beans were the staple food crop for the O’odham. Blue speckled is a Mayan folkrace type of bean from the O’odham people of southern Mexico.

                      *Colonia Morelos Speckled Tepary Bean*

A very rare tepary bean from Colonia Morelos, which is just outside of Mexico City. Best used as a dried bean for baking.

Cocopah White Tepary Bean

This type is more of a heavy viner with white flowers. Very productive too! This pure white tepary bean is a gorgeous type from the Cocopah people (translating to “those who live on the river”) from the Sonoran desert area. 

So there you have it folks...the official low down on tepary beans!!! Now grow some!!! 

for real....stop reading now, get off the computer and go grow some tepary beans!!! 


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