Kickapoo White Tepary Bean
(Phaseolus acutifolius); Heirloom; Compact bush; Dry bean; a Slow Food Ark of Taste variety; Minimum 20 seeds
An ancient native crop, archeological evidence indicates tepary beans were cultivated in Mexico's Tehuacán Valley over 7,000 years ago. They were known by their Tohono O’odham name t’pawi meaning simply, “it is a bean.” Especially high in soluble fiber, the beans are an excellent source of protein, iron and calcium for those managing their diabetes or high cholesterol through diet.
Despite their southwest heritage, tepary beans are prolific in our Michigan gardens. The low-maintenance, short, compact multi-branched bushes tolerate heat and water stress very well. Due to the low position of pods on the plants, it is best not to over-irrigate. Excessively dry pods tend to shatter.
Once inhabitants of the Great Lakes region, the Kickapoo People now reside on reservations in the American southwest and in Mexico.
White tepary beans are aboard Slow Food's Ark of Taste.
Native Seed / SEARCH has an excellent pdf on cooking and using tepary beans.