Threshing Dried Beans
A Low-Tech Method for Small-Scale Growers
Small-scale dry bean growers often lack the large equipment needed to quickly thresh their crop. In this video, Rebecca Jehn of Rebecca’s Garden in Victoria, BC, demonstrates a fast, low-tech method she uses to thresh dried beans. With a threshing box and a small air compressor, she is able to separate the beans from their pods in minutes. She learned this method from fellow seed grower, Dan Jason, of Salt Spring Seeds.
Both Rebecca and Dan have spent years cultivating and testing bean varieties for the marine west coast climate around Vancouver Island. Dry beans grow well in this climate if you start early. According to Rebecca, because of the short dry season, it’s important to plant by May and stop watering around July, just after the first crop of green beans appears. This helps the plant to put all its energy into maturing and drying the first crop of beans, allowing for harvest while the weather is still likely to be dry.
Rebecca grows most of her bush beans and pole beans in 20-foot rows. If the weather is too damp to dry the beans on the plant, she uses a light table to get them “crispy dry” before threshing.
More about dry beans:
In Search of the Local Bean
23 Heritage Beans