Stoltzfus String Bean
Please check back in the fall.
(Phaseolus vulgaris); Heirloom; Bush bean; Dual purpose: snap or dry; Minimum 20 seeds
An heirloom stewarded by Beachy Amish in Lancaster County Pennsylvania, the Stoltzfus String variety was introduced to the horticultural community around 1888. It is considered a selection of the Excelsior Refugee Bean. A compact bush, it is a prolific producer of 6-inch round pods that are tasty as snap beans at about the 75 day mark. If left to dry on the plant and shelled they yield beautiful tan-speckled, dark purple seeds that are delicious pureed for refried beans or soup.
The provenance of the Stoltzfus String bean is from David Haas, grandfather to Tim Mountz of Happy Cat Farm, Kennett Square PA. Tim acquired a jar of his grandfather's beans after David passed in 1993. It wasn't until a meeting with William Woys Weaver a few years later that the significance of the beans in the jar was discovered. One of them was a deeply dark purple bean speckled with tan. Excitedly, William identified it as the Stoltzfus String bean which wasn't grown in 70 years. That meeting and revelation inspired Tim to work with William and through their efforts, the variety was restored to active garden status.