Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The Frustrated Gardener and Their Purple Beans

In the garden this week, beautiful Royal Burgundy Beans dangle boldly against the tender green leaves of the bean plant. Here and there they peek through the tangled mess of vine and blossom. Once plucked from their stems, the beans are striking as they patiently wait amidst the kale and onions.

Last week our office received a call from one rather upset gardener. Her vibrant burgundy beans weren't burgundy any more, but had turned green! Quite determined there was an error in the process, she insisted her beans had to stay burgundy because they were oh so pretty and much healthier than regular old green ones. Goodness, the frenzy we get ourselves in when our plants don't cooperate.

While I share her grief over the reality that burgundy beans turn green when cooked, there is no foul in her work... it's just nature doing what nature does. Any cooked veggie does suffer a bit of nutrient loss, however, the color change really is a cosmetic issue not nutritional. In her frustration she questioned why anyone at all would grow them if they simply won't stay burgundy. My answer is simple- because....

... they are a beautiful greeting when you walk into the garden.
... they are much easier to find on the plant when you are harvesting!
... they are healthy and tasty and wonderful, cooked or fresh.
... and finally, because I can.

Sometimes the items we plant are simply there because we can plant them. Aesthetically pleasing is surely a reason, right? Today I snip the tips from my burgundy beans and smile in sympathy toward the dear gardener so devastated at her reality. Yes, once the heat hits them they will fade.. but for now their beauty brightens one little part of my day.


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