Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Blue tepary beans, and Rays Purple potato

Another lovely cool day today. The cool weather lately has finally encouraged the melons and pumpkins to put out some female flowers so they might not be such a loss after all. Give it a couple more days and I will be busy hand pollinating.
I had given up on producing any pure, hand pollinated seed this year and was resigned to planting the bee pollinated seed next year and having to do a lot of careful selecting to get them true to type, or buy more seed of course.

 I have been busy collecting my Blue Speckled Tepary beans. Here is a picture of the size difference between dry and fresh beans. The fresh beans are triple the size.
I cooked up a few beans for tasting, leaving the dried beans overnight to let them swell to fresh size, then microwaving them for a few minutes.

They are very mild, too mild for bean lovers but just right for me. Yam.

Today I dug up one plant of my Rays Purple potato, bred by a backyard breeder in NSW.

These plants are amazing, they grew to 5 feet tall and still haven't stopped. When they flowered some time ago I expected them to die down so I could harvest but they just kept on going, they are starting to flower for a second time right now.

I will put some back in the ground tomorrow and see how they grow through the Autumn growing period.

With their vigour and long stolons I think these will be perfect for growing in tubs where you keep adding straw.
I was surprised buy their russetted skin and the fact that every potato has a different ratio of purple to white. They are square shaped and a bit bigger than fist sized.

I will cook some up tonight to see what they taste like and whether they are better for baking, mashing, or all purpose use.

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