Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Dry Bean, Yin Yang Bean, Calypso Bean
Phaseolus vulgaris 'Orca'

Family: Papilionaceae (pa-pil-ee-uh-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Phaseolus (FAZ-ee-oh-lus) (Info)
Species: vulgaris (vul-GAIR-iss) (Info)
Cultivar: Orca

» View all varieties of Beans

2 members have or want this plant for trade.


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

3-6 in. (7-15 cm)

Seed Type:
Open Pollinated

Growth Habit:

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Days to Maturity:
81 to 90 days

Bloom Color:
Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Click thumbnail
to view:

By TwoWillies
Thumbnail #1 of Phaseolus vulgaris by TwoWillies


No positives
2 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral melody On Apr 22, 2009, melody from Benton, KY (Zone 7a) wrote:

Information only, I have not grown this bean.

The terms orca, yin yang and calypso are all descriptors for these dry beans with two distinct color areas. Most often, orcas tend to be black and white like their name sake, while the others can be black and white, brown and white or white and tan. The dry bean grown by the Anasazi native peoples is probably the source of the original strain.

The names are used interchangeably as cultivar names or descriptive common names by gardeners and vendors alike. The exception is the specific Orca cultivar developed by Washington State University.

There are beans known as orca beans that are not the cultivar Orca.

Neutral Farmerdill On Aug 16, 2005, Farmerdill from Augusta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

A black and white bean.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Lucedale, Mississippi

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