Thursday, October 06, 2005

Frosted Beans

Fall has descended once again and my pinto beans still aren't mature (I planted them late). Here in Utah we've been having frosts. The question I've been researching is, should I leave them on the plant to finish maturing or harvest them and dry them inside?

For soybeans, (from umn extension)
Frost at the R6 growth stage and earlier, assuming that the plants did not completely freeze at this time, will result in a yield reduction and damaged beans with greenish color and wrinkled seed coats. Protein content should not be affected by frost; however oil content will generally be reduced if frost occurs before R6 (full seed). Fields should not be harvested until pods have a mature color, even if a killing frost occurred when the pods were green or yellow. Studies have shown that beans on frost-damaged plants will mature and change color at least as early and perhaps earlier than undamaged soybeans, however, the frosted, dead leaves will remain on the plant, and some beans may retain their green color.
This seems to imply it is better to leave the immature beans out on the plants until they turn yellow. I have some hope for my plants because, while the gourd and corn got nipped, the beans appear to be untouched by the frost.

I also want to know if there is any chance that the seed from the frost damaged beans will grow next year if I plant it, or if I should just eat them all.

Update here.

No comments: