A Variety Of Canavalia

This year I’m growing a variety of Canavalia, commonly known as jack bean. It’s a fast-growing vine with tri-lobed leaves, and pea-like flowers.

Canavalia is a genus of flowering plants in the legume family Fabaceae and comprises 70-75 species of tropical origin. (Wiki).

Couldn’t resist including these photos of the buds about to burst and the oriental magpie-robin on the bean trellis.

The seeds germinate within a week. The plant isn’t fussy about the soil type, is drought-resistant and does well in full sun. I’ve got my vines in three different areas, all sunny. Although these plants aren’t bothered by pests, one particular vine has had its leaves ripped off by small black caterpillars.

Although this variety of bean is grown in our parts, the first time I set eyes on these were in September last year in my mother’s garden. The sheer length of the beans stumped me…of course they grew longer later than seen in this photo.

Nearly a foot long!

The above photo was taken this afternoon. This bean is eaten in many parts of India. It is sometimes grown as an ornamental with very attractive pea-like flowers. The flowering period is from April to October. The generic name is derived from the Malabar word kavavali which means “forest climber”. According to Wiki, the name of the species endemic to the Hawaiian islands, translates as “the very quick one” or “fast”. Going by its growth rate, the name is most appropriate.

About Kanak Hagjer

Hello from north-east India! I love to blog about all things floral and foliar and sharing the beauty of my region is what I am most passionate about!
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5 Responses to A Variety Of Canavalia

  1. mia says:

    Enormous bean you are showing. I like beans, both as flowers, to fill up empty spaces and of course on my plate. They taste delicious 🙂

  2. These are really gorgeous. Amazing, what you accomplish.

  3. Stephanie says:

    Hello Kanak, my Thunbergia laurifolia buds look like that also! Cute 😉 But the beans is white. Quite unusual. I wonder if it taste nice. But the whole pod is really long. Enjoy your day and have a great week.

  4. lotusleaf says:

    What an enormous bean! I have misplaced the seed you had given me 😦 You managed to get a bird in too!

  5. Elu says:

    The words “Jack Bean” and the photos no.5 & 6 reminded me of the tale read(and imagined wishfully as only children can) of “Jack & the Bean Stalk.”

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