The speckled butter bean is one of 100 named varieties of this lima bean (Phaseolus lunatus), native to South and Central America. “Steak bean” is a Southern term for what are called lima beans in different areas, and they are a familiar part of Southern cuisine. Butter beans that are speckled are perennials. Some varieties grow as bushes requiring trellises or poles. They blossom until early autumn and produce beans until the first frost in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 10.

Climate and Soil

Pods will not be set by butter beans till temperatures stay over 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Bush types mature in approximately 65 days. Pole forms take 80 to 100 times to yield beans. In warm weather, the pole variety will yield beans in approximately 78 days. Plant beans in a bright place in well-drained, medium-rich soil having a pH between 5.8 and 7. Work before you plant them, aged mulch to the beds.


Butter bean flowers produce considerable amounts of nectar, bringing bees which may be carrying pollen from different varieties which are planted less than a mile off. Don’t plant butterbean varieties nearby Should you save your seeds. The”Florida Speckled” butter bean is purple when it is from the shell and buff-colored, splashed with maroon, when it is dried.

Planting Seeds

Put stakes or poles before you plant pole varieties. Don’t soak the seeds before you do not over water once you sow them and plant them. Sow seeds after the danger of frost has passed and the soil is at least 50 F. If you plant bush types distance them, in hills . If you plant them in rows, space them. Sow pole forms to 2 to 4 inches deep and in rows that are.

Water and Fertilizer

Keep the soil moist while shape and the plants blossom pods. Tiny pods and the flowers may fall off when they are flowering Should you irrigate by it rains or sprinklers. If the temperature exceeds 60 F, then apply mulch at the base of these plants to conserve moisture. Butter beans will produce leaves but not many beans, if the soil is full of sugar. Legumes are described as nitrogen-fixing because they contribute oxygen to the ground. They do not require additional nitrogen. Used aged compost.

Diseases and Pests

Stem anthracnose is the disease that strikes butter beans. To help control this disease, do not plant them in exactly the exact same location for two straight years. Horticulturalists at the University of California-Davis recommend buying butterbean cultivars which are resistant to the bean yellow mosaic, a virus carried by aphids which can cause leaves to turn brown and curl. Keep your plants free of debris to help stop strikes by mites, leafhoppers and bean aphids and flea beetles. You can blast off mites, leafhoppers and aphids using water.


Harvest the bean pods before they shatter although when they are expanded and starting to turn yellowish or when they are dry and brown. Dry the beans quickly and keep them.

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