Beans are the mainstay of the kitchen garden: both easy and rewarding. Store-bought can’t compare with home-grown beans; modest toil and small bean patches yield large returns. To satisfy zee french in you, four are haricots verts or ultra-slim ‘filet’ types, difficult to find at the market and coveted by chefs everywhere. Beans are native to South America: sow when soil has reliably warmed to 60°F or by the last frost date. Harvest straight to the kitchen at their optimal size for eating, usually when small. Pick ‘filet’ types when scandalously thin. Don’t wait until seeds form in their tender pods because by then, the sweetness, not to mention the tender-crispness, is lost.Average seed life: 2-3 years
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