Phaseolus coccineus

Runner Bean
#146 Devil's Defiance
NO SEED. Ex HDRA. A scarlet runner with mottled black/purple beans. Our most popular climbing bean: Very tasty - “you won’t want to eat another bean once you’ve eaten these ones”. Original HDRA name is actually “Daniel’s Defiance” after a long-closed seed company in Norwich, England. The name changed out here – was it a misprint, or is there a story here?
#004 Dutch Runner Bean
#238 Grandparent's Takamatua Black
Gifted by Henry Harrington, Southland. Given to Henry by his Grandmother and grown for more than 50 years by him since then. Henry’s Grandparents had the farm at the top of “Takamatua Valley” just out of Akaroa. Similar to scarlet runner except for the colour of the beans (black). Very tasty. Some rogues with beans of mottled and white varieties.
#236 Grandparent's Takamatua White
Gifted by Henry Harrington, Southland, from Henry’s Grandmother (refer #238 above). Good as a dried bean as well as young green beans.
#701 Ladbrooks Heirloom
NO SEED. Treasured and grown by Derek Hann's grandad, who was a market gardener in Ladbrooks since leaving school. He died recently at age 94.
#660 Long Black
Black seeded, orange/red flowers. Identical to “Takamatua Black” except longer beans. Good for green beans and dried shellout beans.
#233 Painted Lady
NO SEED. Two-coloured pale and dark seeds. Those who were hooked into the recent “historical drama” series “The Tudors” will be delighted to know that this was the first recorded variety of runner bean to enter Britain, introduced as an ornamental to Royal gardens in 1596. Its name reflects the similarity of the red and white bi-coloured flowers to the white chalk make-up and lipstick worn by then Queen Elizabeth I (yes, that’s the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn). An alternative Tudor name for the variety survives – “Lancaster and York,” reflecting the Tudor monarchs’ uniting of England at the end of a bloody civil war. The symbols of the rival Houses of Lancaster and York (red and white roses respectively) were combined into the bi-coloured Tudor Rose, which this cultivar’s flowers echoed.
#711 Painted Lady
NO SEED. Ex. Running Brook Seeds, Awhitu Peninsula. Two-coloured larger seeds - pale beige and dark.
#235 Scarlet Emperor
NO SEED. Red flowers, 25-30cm pods, seeds purplish with dark red streaks & stipples, especially around the eye. An old variety from the 19th century.
#347 Scarlett
Received in 2000 from Bryce Palmer, Auckland Seed Exchange. “An old strain of scarlet runner which my grandmother purchased in 1940’s at the general store, Waipu, Northland.”
#589 Sunset
NO SEED. Heirloom variety from Cesar Zapata. From a small packet labelled “Sunset” he got at our 2005 seed swap. “Very tasty, a early maturing, heavy cropper, lots of flesh - seeds only produced late in maturing of pods. Medium length, richly flavoured pods. Has attractive, pale pink flowers.” “Sunset” has been successfully seed-saved from Aberdeen, Scotland – the furthest from the equator – so is worth trialling in otherwise marginal areas in the southern South Island.
#631 Sutton's Giant
Ex Koanga. Pods 20cm to 30cm+ long, good for freezing.
#821 Sutton's Longpod
#167 White Czar
A fine, bold white flowering runner bean, not as prolific as scarlet runners. The pods are hairy not smooth, young pods are long, fine, tender, mild flavoured for use as green beans. If left to dry it will produce a crop of plump, fine tasting, beautiful white butter beans. An heirloom cultivar that we almost lost, originally gifted by Elaine Wilson, recuperated by Cesar Zapata (Wellington). Cesar reported rogues in the original seed he received from us: some red flowering plants which he rouged, and some with smooth pods, which he has separated and is cultivating as a new variety.
#619 White Czar (Dwarf)
NO SEED. This was labelled as #167 “White Czar” and stored in our fridge, and grown by our guardian Cesar Zapata. Cesar has identified it as a distinctly different cultivar, so now it has a new accession, #619. It has quite different characteristics to White Czar Runner. We believe this is a cultivar of Japanese origin also named “White Czar”, and possibly a hybrid of the original “White Czar”. It grows about 1m in height, and produces plump white dry beans - smaller and plumper than the original “White Czar”.