With the east coast of the United States being the dominant growing region for green beans in the United States, this is not without its challenges.
While the combination of warm days and cool nights allows for ideal bean production, the days and nights get warmer and hotter, which in turn speeds up crop development and also invites more pressure from the insects.
William Liggitt from Pop Vriend Seeds in Georgia.
Enter the Magma seed collection from Pop Vriend Seeds based in the Netherlands. Pop Vriend has developed and tested four varieties of seeds to account for these growing temperatures. To date, the collection includes four varieties: PV958 (also known as the Sanford variety), PV959, PV961 and PV857, which is already being introduced commercially for the 2021 season and Liggitt says it is enjoying a good adoption rate. among producers.
âThe theme behind this collection is really heat tolerance,â says William Liggitt with Pop Vriend. âOur senior breeder in the Netherlands has worked on developing a program for bean growers on the east coast, particularly in states such as Florida and Georgia. These are the areas we need to see heat tolerant varieties. While this is the goal of the collection, Liggitt notes that PV857 has shown some resistance to whitefly as well.
Liggitt adds that each strain also offers something unique to growers. âThe Sanford variety is probably the one we’ll put in at the start of the season when it warms up. Or in Florida, this season starts to get hot, then November-January cools off as you head into winter. We then recommend PV958 because it’s a good winter bean for cooler temperatures, but it can still handle the heat, âexplains Liggitt.
Ongoing trials also show that these seeds may also work for growers in other regions, such as the North East Coast and the West Coast. âFor example, we’ve seen PV961 perform very well in Texas,â says Liggitt.
Liggitt (center), Christian Dameron, GA sales rep for Seedway and Wes Houghton, product manager, beans for Seedway.
Along with southeastern states such as Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas, and Tennessee, areas of interest for growers also come from Michigan and the Midwest. âIn terms of export markets, we’ve just started testing some of the varieties globally in other markets. But they are not yet at the commercial introduction stage, âexplains Liggitt.
Although consumers are often unfamiliar with the types of seeds when it comes to their diet, they may react to a unique characteristic that these seeds produce in beans. âThey produce a darker bean – all four varieties are really moving towards a darker pod color, which is what consumers and buyers want,â says Liggitt.
Looking ahead, Liggitt adds that work continues on developing seed varieties in this collection for growers. âIt was really developed with the American producer in mind. Many seed companies are growing with a global perspective and although we are a global company we wanted to focus on the east coast producer and we will continue to do so, âhe said.