Christmas Lima Beans
Christmas Lima Beans: Very old variety dating back to at least 1840, the same year that Antarctica was discovered, and claimed by Charles Wilkes for America! Large quarter dollar-sized flat lima beans can be used either as a green shelled bean or a dry bean.
Christmas Lima Bean History
Christmas Lima Bean (Phaseolus lunatus) Very old variety dating back to at least 1840, the same year that Antarctica was discovered, and claimed by Charles Wilkes for America! Beans will retain their markings after being cooked. Excellent, buttery texture. Plants are very vigorous and can grow 10′ tall. Heavy yields, tolerant of extreme heat. 75-95 days
Growing Christmas Lima
Grow lima beans in full sun; they will grow in partial shade but the harvest will not be full. Lima beans prefer loose, well-drained soil rich in organic matter. Beans prefer a soil pH of 6.0 to 6.8. Prepare planting beds in advance by working in plenty of aged compost. Avoid planting beans where soil nitrogen is high or where green manure crops have just grown; these beans will produce green foliage but few beans.
Lima beans are a tender annual that grows best in air temperatures between 60° and 70°F (15-21°C). Sow lima beans in the garden 3 to 4 weeks after the average date of the last frost in spring when the soil temperature has warmed to 65°F (18°C) or more for at least 5 days. Start beans indoors as early as 2 or 3 weeks before the average last frost date in spring for transplanting into the garden 3 or 4 weeks after the last frost. For continuous harvest through the growing season,
Sow succession crop bush lima beans every two weeks or follow bush lima beans with long-maturing pole lima beans. Beans can continue in the garden until the first frost in fall. Pole lima beans require a long growing period and are not a good choice where the season is short. Lima beans will not set pods in temperatures above 80°F (26°C) or in cold or wet weather. Time your plantings to avoid hot weather.
Preserving And Storing Christmas Beans
You can pack the chilled vegetables in the container you refrigerated them in after blanching, or a better option is to quick freeze or dry pack the beans. These methods can help prevent clumping and make it easier to use small amounts from containers. Arrange the blanched and chilled lima beans on a parchment-lined baking sheet or tray in a single layer. Freeze at -20 F or as low as your freezer will allow. Once frozen, pack in freezer containers or bags leaving 1 inch of headspace.
Christmas Lima Beans Recipe
If you don’t normally eat these beans, or have never tried them, I don’t know what you are waiting for! They are particularly a good source of copper, manganese, folate, iron and cholesterol-lowering fiber.
Lima Bean Nutrition
- Calories: 209.
- Protein: 12 grams.
- Fat: 1 gram.
- Carbohydrates: 40 grams.
- Fiber: 9 grams.
- Sugar: 3 grams.
Other Bean Varieties Worth Checking Out