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Lima Bean
Phaseolus lunatus 'Willow Leaf'

Family: Papilionaceae (pa-pil-ee-uh-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Phaseolus (FAZ-ee-oh-lus) (Info)
Species: lunatus (loo-NAY-tus) (Info)
Cultivar: Willow Leaf
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10-12 ft. (3-3.6 m)


9-12 in. (22-30 cm)

Seed Type:

Open Pollinated

Growth Habit:


Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Unknown - Tell us

Days to Maturity:

81 to 90 days

Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Soil pH requirements:

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


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

Augusta, Georgia (2 reports)

Lucedale, Mississippi

Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 9, 2006, Horseshoe from Efland, NC (Zone 7a) wrote:

Excellent pole "butter bean"! Very good tasting bean! Mighty fine eaten fresh or dried! (I often break into my seed stock during the Winter just to have a pot of these from time to time!)

NOTE: If collecting seed don't allow to "dry on the vine" too long...The pods will break open, shatter, and all the seeds will fly all over the place. I'd suggest letting the pods get tannish/brown then pull them from the vines and let them dry either in paper bags (left open) or on screens.


On Oct 29, 2003, Farmerdill from Augusta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

This the traditional Willow Leaf. Its distinguishing characteristic is the shape of the leaf, which is long and slender. A good producer, it will bear three crops, beginnng in midsummer and ending at frost. In middle Ga, that means July to Mid November. Tends to bear a crop, bloom again when the beans are picked and continue that cycle till frost. Pods are tyical of a baby lima, three to three and one half inches and average 3-4 beans per pod.