Can I Eat My Navy Beans?

My 3 year old was playing with a bag of store bought navy beans in her sandbox. Now I have a full grown bean garden. The pods are full grown, but still green. I was wondering if the pods were edible or if I need to just use the beans when the pods are dry. I live in an apartment with a fenced-in patio instead of a yard. I was not planning on having plants, but now I do and I have no idea what to do with my accidental garden.

Hardiness Zone: 8a

Cara from Columbia, South Carolina

July 23, 20080 found this helpful

The pods aren't really edible as they're very tough and woody.

I'd just wait until they're dry then pull the entire plant.

Then pick off the pods and open them for the beans.

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July 24, 20080 found this helpful

Oh my gosh, makes me remember back to 1960 when we used bean shooters. When the sprouts came up in the back yard, dad made me and my brother PICK all of them!! No more did we shoot beans. Thanks for the memory.

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August 4, 20080 found this helpful

IF you pick them when they are younger (smaller) then YES you can eat the pods - if you wait until the beans resemble navy beans too much then the pods are really not that desirable to eat, tough and almost woody. Enjoy your bounty! (they wont hurt you if you eat the pods - just not too nice to eat!)


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August 11, 20080 found this helpful

Thank you everyone for your feedback! I decided to go ahead and wait, and today I harvested my beans! I got back just a little less than what I lost in the first place. But I don't mind. There's just something wholesome about getting my beans from opening pods picked in my backyard than opening a storebought package, you know?

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