Problems With "tunnels, Ridges" On Green And Yellow Beans - Knowledgebase Question

Appleton, WI
Question by bobbraun
December 23, 1999
Every year I get these tiny ridges or maybe they are tunnels on my green and yellow beans. The first ones to come don't usually have many but as time goes on they get worse and worse until toward the end almost all the beans have them. I can' find this addressed in any garden book. I usually cut them out. I'd like to know if I need to do that because it is very time consuming to examine every bean. It happens with every variety I have tried for 20 years.


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Answer from NGA
December 23, 1999

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The culprit might be stink bugs. Generally, they cause small, warty bumps on the pods. The beans are perfectly edible, so you needn't cut away the damage. If, on the other hand, you see actual holes going right into the bean, you may be dealing with something like bean weevils, which actually enter the pod. But it sounds like you are seeing scarring from surface feeding, and there's no need to worry. Another possible culprit is a virus called bean mosaic, which can cause rough spots on beans. Again, you can eat beans with this type of damage. Generally the whole plant is affected by the virus, which also causes mottled or puckered leaves. You might want to try growing a row of one of the resistant varieties such as 'Provider', 'Goldkist', or 'Jade' just to see. These are available from Johnny's Seeds, www.johnnyseeds.com.

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