Q: A friend got some bean seed from his Dad, who told him to plant them and they would do great. I think the word “great” is an understatement. The Dad said they are called “Fala beans”. I’m thinking he meant “Fava beans”. But fava beans are rounded and only about 3″ to 4″ long. As you can see, these beans are 12″ long! According to him they are good eating.
A: Your friend has either a jack bean or a sword bean. The two look about the same, but the “eye” of a sword bean is greater than one half the length of the seed. They are reported to be edible in the young stage but can cause great indigestion when eaten at maturity. Their best use is for telling stories to children!