Wednesday, October 24, 2012

More Fava Beans

I planted my fava beans with our youngest child today. Eleven beans in the packet, so we planted six by the house, and five by the Chinese cabbages in the wild boar danger zone. Hope they make it.
We are in the yellow area of the map, so we plant from early September to mid November.
We can expect to harvest from mid May on.
The beans are from the Atariya Seed company. The variety (for those of you who don't read Japanese well) is "Kawachi" strain of the "One sun (pronounce it "soon") fava bean" A sun is about 3 cm. They appear to be an open pollinated strain- there is no mark indicating it is a hybrid.
A rough translation of the four pink bullets would be:
  • Characteristics- The standard fava bean. Soft and sweet 3cm beans are delicious. Very hardy and easy to cultivate, with lots of 3 bean pods, it is well suited to home gardens.
  • Planting and Care- Planting from late Sept. to November is best. Dig in 5 handfuls of compost per square meter, and one handful of lime. Plant one seed each, 30cm apart in raised rows 60cm wide. Supplementally feed small amounts of a low nitrogen, high phosphorous and potassium chemical fertilizer throughout the growing season.
  • Hints- Planting too early can lead to winter damage. To prevent the plants from falling over, shoulder some soil around them.
  • Harvest and Suggested Uses- In May, when the pods have plumped up, harvest like corn on the cob. Shell the beans and use for snacks or with beer. 
Can't wait to see if they work- my whole family loves favas!


  1. Do you eat the leaves, too? The young leaves can be eaten raw or cooked - rather like spinach.

    1. Yes, it is possible to eat the the leaves, but I prefer to let the plant get bigger and set more pods. If the plant gets damaged by wind or topples, I might harvest some leaves though.

  2. This is cool, little bro. Wish I could see all of this in person.