Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Hyacinth Bean for ABC Wednesday

Hyacinth Bean
Lablab purpureus
(LAB-lab) (pur-PUR-ee-us)
Papilionaceae (puh-pil-ee-uh-NAY-see-ay)
Synonyms: Dolichos lablab, Bonavista bean, Egyptian bean, Lablab Beans

If you are visiting for Wordless Wednesday scroll down to the post below this one.

I have grown this vine before as an ornamental. The beans are edible although some people report a toxic reaction to them. Eat them at your own risk! It is said that one or two water changes during boiling reduce the risk of a bad reaction. Livestock and wildlife don’t seem to have any problems eating them and it is a good source of protein for them.

As an ornamental plant this vine is wonderful. It grows from seed although when I have grown it I bought the plants already started. The flowers are beautiful as is the foliage. It is a ‘heavy’ grower and needs a strong support. It does self-seed so deadheading is recommended if you don’t want to have volunteers next year.

I wondered why it is called the Hyacinth Bean, as the flower doesn’t resemble a Hyacinth. I remembered that Hyacinth is actually a color described as: A deep purplish blue to vivid violet. That certainly covers the flower color and the color of the beans. There are a few horticultural selections out there including some white flowered, red flowered and dwarf forms.

‘H’ is for horse, too. This is one of the horses at the farm. He is retired now and I think he is 19 years old. He is a majestic animal. He always plays it a little coy when I bring carrots to work but soon he is happily munching them with the others. I am not posting his name, as I want to keep the client private. I saw in the barn that this horse had over $250,000 in winnings at the track (he is a thoroughbred) and looking over his pedigree his grandfather was no other than the great Secretariat. Even at his age he is quite a looker and for a magical moments when he sometimes takes off running across the pasture I think he is reliving his glory days. I am not really sure about that but he sure is beautiful to watch.

We finally got some rain yesterday, over an inch. That should help the garden as a lot of plants and trees were starting to struggle.

Here is the list for ABC Wednesday:
(I'll post more when I find them.)


RUTH said...

Whta a fabulous colour that flower is...a wonderful addition to any garden. Love the photo of the horse....what a great pedigree it has :o)

kml said...

Beautiful horse - my daughter just loves the brown horses with the dark manes. He is quite impressive!

Ali said...

Another brilliant plant photo, it looks just gorgeous, you have a great ability to capture the real essence of the plant.

Celeste said...

Beautiful horse

Jean M Fogle said...

wow I love both pics and know what you mean about the rain! We got 2 inches in VA and just in time.

AVCR8TEUR said...

Great H photos. I wonder what a Hyacinth Bean tastes like. That is a beautiful horse. I hope he's enjoying his retirement.

WalksFarWoman said...

DFP - What a lovely post. I don't think I would try your Hyacinth bean beautiful as it is, I no longer have the cast iron constitution I used to.

That horse really is magnificent, they are exquisite animals whether they are moving or standing still. Super photos - again!

DWQ Online said...

I love hyacinths. What a beautiful photograph and lovely color.

dot said...

This is a really good ABC Wednesday post. Beautiful pictures and interesting information! I'm not a horse fan but that one is really something!

Hin Man said...

I always enjoy the lighting in your flower shot. It is subtle in purple and gives the impression of mystique in your flower shot -- I love the purple with a touch of darkness and lighting well balanace.

Neva said...

A very good "H" picture or pictures!!

Annie said...

I wonder if I can find seeds to grow the hyacinth bean next year? It's lovely. I have now successfully covered my neighbor's fence with morning glories (they've reseeded themselves the last two years) but there's another spot I'd like to cover with beauty. Thanks for introducing me to this H-plant.

Lynette said...

At first I thought, "Well, it can't get any better than this lovely flower," then I saw the horse. Thank you so much for the picture and anecdote.

Also, I decided to participate in ABC Wednesday. Could you please add me to your list? htt://

Thanks so much.

david mcmahon said...

Brilliant, Chris,

The Hyacinth Bean shot has nuances that are spectacular. Again, I must say you and I are drawn to the same colours and compositions.

Think I'm kidding? Look at my shot of the lilac flowering wandering jew plant from about three weeks ago - same colours.

Great stuff.



Mike said...

Your flower shots are always fantastic.

It's a lovely horse shot too but to be honest I find the things a bit dangerous..... much safer on my motorcycle. At least it does what i tell it.

Digital Flower Pictures said...

I'll look up that post. I really love your photography so maybe there is something to it. Thanks for looking and leaving a comment on the Gallery shot.

I couldn't visit your blog it was freezing Fire fox.

:lol: So you like the Iron Horse? I will agree that it is better to have brakes. I would never get on this horse, he can still run way, way to fast.

WFW and AV, Hello to both of you. Two bloggers whose work I really like. The beans (and the foliage and flowers) are apparently eaten a lot in Asia so they are probably okay. I just want to be careful when recommending edible plants here.

ali, thanks. Comments like yours really help. When I go out in the garden I remember things like this. "Now Ali said I am a good flower photographer just relax and use your style." It does really help.

I have been enjoying your comments. See above. Thanks for being a regular reader.

annie, Give it a try. Remember gardening is an experiment. I think it would mix well with the Morning Glories. Just remember it has to be a strong fence as it is a heavy vine.

kml, He is a great horse. I laughed when I found out he cost 3x the money my house did. Your daughter would love the farm as the brown/dark mane seems to be the color horse the owner likes too. Between the two farms they have over 100 horses.

celeste and neva, I am not sure if you have been before. If you haven't, welcome.

dwq, thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

jean, That rain was a blessing from heaven, I think. Everything looks so much better here now.

hinman, thanks re: comments on the pictures. Your scrollable box has been a godsend. I just wanted to say again the color on your pictures is fantastic.

Thanks to all the ABCer's. It is a really nice group.