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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Production Management Research For Horticultural Crops in the Gulf South

Location: Southern Horticultural Research

Title: Evaluation of Yardlong Bean as a Potential New Crop for Southern Growers

Authors
item Coker, C -
item Ely, R -
item Freeman, T -

Submitted to: HortTechnology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: September 1, 2010
Publication Date: October 1, 2010
Citation: Coker, C.E., Ely, R.M., Freeman, T.E. 2010. Evaluation of Yardlong Bean as a Potential New Crop for Southern Growers. HortTechnology, October-December. 17(4):592-594.

Interpretive Summary: Ethnicity plays a strong role in niche market development. As Asian populations continue to grow in Mississippi, especially along the Gulf Coast, it is important to recognize new market opportunities. The fruits and vegetables desired by the diverse Asian population are often unavailable or of poor quality due to extensive shipping distances. Mississippi growers can meet this need for fresh oriental produce and receive a higher price than for traditional vegetables. Yardlong, or asparagus bean is the same species as the cowpea. The cultural practices for yardlong bean are similar to that of traditional pole beans. However, there is still much to be learned about this crop in terms of pest management, disease susceptibility, and variety superiority. The purpose of this research was to compare length and yield of eight yardlong bean varieties and collect observational data regarding production practices. Eight yardlong bean varieties were grown at the Beaumont Horticultural Unit during summer 2001 and 2002. Highest marketable yields were attained with the varieties ‘Red Seed’ and ‘Black Seed’, which are best suited for growing conditions in southern Mississippi. However, mosaic viruses may pose a potential production problem, and further research is warranted to determine best cultural practices and pest management.

Technical Abstract: Ethnicity plays a strong role in niche market development, and the Asian market is currently under served. As Asian populations continue to grow in Mississippi, especially along the Gulf Coast, it is important to recognize new market opportunities. The fruits and vegetables desired by the diverse Asian population are often unavailable or of poor quality due to extensive shipping distances. Mississippi growers can meet this need for fresh oriental produce at a higher price than traditional vegetables. Yardlong, or asparagus bean (Vigna unguiculata cultigroup sesquipedalis), is the same species as the cowpea. The cultural practices for yardlong bean are similar to that of traditional pole beans (Phaseolus vulgaris). However, there is still much to be learned about this crop in terms of pest management, disease susceptibility, and variety superiority. The objectives of this research were to compare length and yield of eight yardlong bean varieties and collect observational data regarding production practices. Four replications of eight yardlong bean varieties were grown at the Beaumont Horticultural Unit during Summer 2001 and 2002. Beans were grown on 4-ft-wide trellises 1 ft above the soil line. Beans were harvested twice per week. Highest marketable yields were attained with the varieties ‘Red Seed’ and ‘Black Seed’, which are best suited for growing conditions in southern Mississippi. However, mosaic viruses may pose a potential production problem, and further research is warranted to determine best cultural practices and pest management.

Last Modified: 11/23/2014