Dolichos: Planting And Care In The Open Field, Growing From Seed

The climbing perennial dolichos is a member of the legume family. This plant is also commonly referred to as Egyptian bean, climbing lilac, and cocorne.

Peculiarities of Dolichos

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Dolichos can be found in natural conditions in East Africa. In regions with mild and warm winters, this flower is grown as a perennial, but in areas with harsher climates it is grown as an annual. Flowering occurs in mid-July.

The long, brush-like inflorescences consist of very small white or purple flowers. They are pleasantly scented and a bit like lilacs. Rather often cultivated as an ornamental plant it is very suitable for fences, pergolas and decorative arches.

This climbing plant has large leaf plates of deep green color against which the pink or pale purple inflorescences and the purple pods look very impressive. The height of such a liana is about 600 centimeters, which allows it to be combined with other climbing plants.

Therefore, it is often used for vertical landscaping, creating spectacular compositions. The fruits of such a plant have medicinal properties, and they are also used in food. A large number of delicious dishes are prepared from dolichos beans.

Planning and care of dolichos in the open field

In the middle latitudes, dolichos is usually grown through seedlings. The seeds of such a plant, collected with your own hands, remain germinating for 5 years.

Seeds can also be sown directly into the open ground, doing it in May. However, in this case, the bush will grow for a very long time, and the first flowers can be seen not until the end of August. Because of this, experienced gardeners recommend growing dolichos through seedlings.

Growing seedlings

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Sow the seeds at the end of February. The seed needs to be prepared before sowing.

To do this, it is placed on moistened gauze and placed in a warm place. But before soaking the seeds, the shell of each bean should be carefully pierced with a sharp needle, without touching the white spot on the rib, because this is where the germ zone is located (from it the sprout appears).

Fill small cups with substrate consisting of sand, leaf turf and peat first. Sow one seed in each container, placing it about 40 mm deep into the soil mixture. The seeds are carefully moistened with a sprayer, and from above they are covered with a film and transferred to a warm place with diffused light.

For the seedlings to emerge as quickly as possible, remember to air and moisten the seeds regularly with a sprayer and make sure they are kept warm (about 23 degrees).

Dolichos , ornamental beans, planting for seedlings

Planting seedlings in the ground

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

When the seedlings have grown and become stronger, they are transplanted into the garden. Planting is done in May after the warm weather has established, when the threat of spring frosts is over. For the seedlings to take root as quickly and better as possible, they are carefully transferred from the cups into the prepared hole, while trying to keep the clump of soil intact. The distance between the planting holes can vary from 0.

2 to 0.4 meters. Place a support around the planting immediately, which should be at least 200 cm high. Choose a sunny area for planting, because this plant is light- and heat-loving. Another place selected for planting dolichos should be reliably protected from strong winds and draughts, because they can severely damage it and even cause the death of bushes.

Soil on the site should be loose, nutritious and neutral. Before planting seedlings, don't forget to dig over the plot. If the soil is depleted, apply decompost about 30 days before planting the seedlings.


Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

This plant needs systematic watering. Make sure the soil surface is constantly moist, but do not allow liquid to stagnate in the roots, otherwise rot may appear on the root system.

Systematically pour a small amount of water under each plant once every three days. During the hot dry season, increase the frequency of watering to once every two days. Don't forget to loosen the surface of the soil mixture after each watering, and remove any weeds.

Suitable soil

For the plant, it is recommended to choose areas with a loose, nutritious soil with a neutral reaction. It should be permeable to water and air and contain a minimum amount of nitrogen.

Before planting the seedlings, the soil should be turned over and decomposed organic fertiliser, peat or sand should be added. If the soil is acidic, some lime or charcoal is also put in during digging.

27 March 2020 An amazing plant, the creeping lilac, Dolichos or hyacinth bean. .


Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Potting Dolichos is done only once when it is planted from a seedling container into the open ground.

Transplanting is done by transplanting by gently pulling the plant with a root ball out of the pot and placing it in the hole. Seedlings planted in the soil should be watered, and the soil surface near them is recommended to cover with a layer of mulch, so that the moisture evaporated more slowly. Dry peat can be used for this.


Feed Dolichos regularly once a month with a complex mineral fertilizer. If the liana gets enough nutrients, it will remain showy and attractive until frost.


Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Grown through sprouts, the bushes begin to bloom in June. They bear long, fragrant, yellow, lilac, white or pink truss-like inflorescences. Each inflorescence lasts about 3 weeks, so if they are well looked after, shrubs can bloom for a long time (up to frosts). When the inflorescence fades, it produces fruits of dark purple color, represented by pods, they also have a high decorative value, just like the flowers themselves. The fruits grow in bunches, with 2-4 beans inside them.

Each seed has a white spot on the rib. They are edible and widely used in a variety of dishes.


Dolichos does not need to be cut. The only thing is that before the side branches grow, the tops of the stems should be pruned regularly. And don't forget to install a support next to the planting where the bush can freely curl up.


Dolichos is cultivated as an annual plant in middle latitudes, so there is no need to prepare it for wintering. Once the shrubs begin to wilt, simply remove them from the plot and destroy them.

Hanging plants for hedges! Dolichos for summer hedges!

Propagation methods

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

As already mentioned above, Dolichos is grown from seed in the middle latitudes and may be propagated by seedling or sprouting. If you decide to sow seeds directly in the open ground, you should take into account that the bushes will grow very long and will begin to bloom only in the last summer weeks. This is why gardeners prefer to grow such a flower through seedlings, and how to do this is explained in great detail above in the section "Growing seedlings".

Diseases and pests

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

A plant like Dolichos is highly resistant to diseases. However, it can be damaged by improper care; for example, the shrub may have yellow leaves or fail to bloom. To make the vines green again and bloom lushly, they need to be nourished. They should also be given regular feedings in the future. Remember that this flower reacts extremely negatively to a lack of nutrients.

Pests also try to bypass this liana. However, it can still be harmed by aphids or caterpillars. If you notice them on the bushes, spray the foliage as soon as possible with Actellic insecticide, making sure to follow the instructions on the package.

Dolichos species and varieties with photo

Dolichos Lablab

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Homeland of this species is Western Europe. In Russia, it is cultivated as an annual.

The height of such a climbing plant is about 500 cm. Strongly branched stems are decorated with leaves of green and purple color. During flowering, brushes are formed on the bush, which includes 40 small flowers each. The tassel-like inflorescences can be up to half a meter long and look like garlands. The color of the flowers may be pink, white or cream.

They do not smell of anything. It begins flowering in mid-summer and ends with the first frost.

Dolichos Common

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

This liana can be up to 450 cm long. The leaves may be colored green or purple. This species is native to Western Europe, where it is cultivated as an ornamental perennial.

Flowering is observed in the middle of the summer period. At this time long, large inflorescences of many pink, white or cream-colored flowers are formed on the bushes. When the blossoms end, the flowers form dark purple pods with seeds (edible beans) inside.

Dolichos Ruby Moon

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

This vines have flexible stems approximately 400 cm long. The heart-shaped leaves are pointed at the top and are colored a deep green with a purple tint.

The long tassels consist of large flowers of a lilac hue. Flowers of this species can be used for cuttings, they stand for a long time in water and still smell very pleasant. The species blooms in mid-June. At the end of flowering, dark purple pods form on the bush, which do not fall off until the second half of fall and are a wonderful decoration for Dolichos.

Dolichos Purple

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

This herbaceous decorative liana is cultivated as an annual.

The shoots are about 300 cm long and have large heart-shaped leaf plates with a pointed apex. The leaves are green with a violet-red tint. The fragrant, long tassels consist of pink, purple, white or crimson flowers. Flowering is observed in mid-summer and after it ends, pods with edible beans appear on the bush.

Dolichos Hyacinth

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

The stems of this herbaceous decorative liana are about 400 cm long.

The large heart-shaped leaves have a pointed tip and are colored green with a purple cast. The long, fragrant tassels include lilac flowers. This liana blooms in mid-summer. Dark purple colored pods appear in place of the blossomed inflorescences, inside which are edible seeds.

Dolichos Pink Moon

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

This species is considered the most decorative of all known dolichos species.

Its stems are about 400 cm long. The heart-shaped large leaf plates are pointed at the top, and they are colored with a deep green hue. The purple long tassels have a pleasant scent. When the flowering is over, dark purple colored pods form, with beans inside.

Dolichos Purple Garland

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

The stems of this strong-growing liana can reach about 600 cm in length.

The dark green, large leaves are heart-shaped. During flowering, purple brushes form, resembling spectacular garlands. When they finish blooming, the shrub retains its decorative power by producing dark purple seedpods.

Dolichos Lilac Cascade

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Unlike other species, this plant has more compact branched stems. One liana can have up to 30 shoots.

The large, heart-shaped foliage is dark green in color and has a pointed apex. It does not flower very abundantly (when compared to other species) but its long, purple-colored racemes are very striking. When flowering ends, the shrub is decorated with dark purple, glossy pods instead of flowers with seeds (beans) inside.

Dolichos in cooking: Recipes

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

As already stated above, the fruits, or more precisely the beans, of Dolichos can be consumed as food. They are similar in appearance and taste to beans.

However, dolichos are much more delicate than beans and taste more pleasant. The seeds of dolichos contain a lot of starch and vegetable protein. That's why these beans are very nourishing and help to restore strength in a short time. Young pods as well as mature beans are used to prepare a wide variety of dishes.

The beans of this plant go well with rice, stewed vegetables, seafood and poultry.

They can also be added to soup or salads. Here are a few recipes to help you learn how to make delicious dishes with dolichos.

Soup with dolichos and coconut cream

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Spicy and hearty soup is made with spices, dolichos and coconut cream. This dish is perfect for a family dinner or a small celebration. To prepare it, you need to prepare:

  • two chicken backs;
  • one medium-sized onion;
  • 0.

    45 kg of dolichos beans;

  • 0.2 L of coconut cream;
  • six tablespoons of lime juice;
  • four bay leaves;
  • half teaspoon each of dried garlic, zira and turmeric;
  • four chili peppers;
  • one tablespoon of dried tomatoes and the same amount of dried ginger.

In order to prepare the soup, you must first take a pot and pour 3 liters of pure water into it, and then put into it peeled and chopped onions, chicken backs, and bay leaves. From these products it is necessary to prepare a broth. From the cooked broth, take out both the bay leaves, the chicken, and the onions.

Carefully remove all bones from the meat. Strain the broth so that it is clear. Pour the dolichos beans in advance with warm water, so they have time to stand for four hours. In the ready broth add cream and stir everything well. After that, spices, finely chopped chili peppers, spices, prepared beans and chicken are poured into it.

Put the pot on the fire and let the soup boil, and then turn down the heat and simmer until fully cooked. When the soup is half done, put salt in it. Ready dish spread on plates, and on top decorate with finely chopped fresh herbs. It is also recommended to add a small amount of lime juice to each plate.

Unusual pasta with dolichos

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Macaroni served with greens, dolichos and cheese is a very unusual and delicious dish, characterized by its heartiness.

You will only need about 1 hr.

First, prepare all the necessary ingredients:

  • a cup and a half of pre-cooked dolichos;
  • 0.23 kg of small spiral pasta;
  • half a teaspoon of lemon zest;
  • 0.15 kg of grated parmesan cheese;
  • quarter cup olive oil;
  • a full cup chopped parsley greens;
  • one bunch of fresh green onions;
  • pepper and salt added to taste.

To prepare this appetizing dish, first boil the pasta in salted water until fully cooked.

When a few minutes are left to cook, pour the dolichos into the pot. Toss the contents of the pot in a colander, and wait for all the liquid to drain off. Put cooked beans and pasta in a deep bowl, and pour into it chopped onion and parsley, as well as pepper, lemon zest, cheese and olive oil. Mix everything well, and the dish will be ready. It will just have to be placed on plates and served.

Chicken with carrots and dolichos

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Chicken roasted with vegetables and an incredibly delicious ginger-soy sauce has a very unusual spicy taste and looks delicious. Despite the name, there is nothing complicated about making this dish. The first thing you need to do is to prepare all the necessary ingredients:

  • 0.45 kg of chopped chicken fillets;
  • a full cup of dolichos beans to be boiled until half cooked;
  • a couple of tablespoons of soy sauce and cornstarch;
  • a quarter cup of orange juice;
  • a cup and a half of cooked chicken broth;
  • half a teaspoonful of dried red pepper;
  • one tablespoonful of toasted sesame seeds and the same amount of grated ginger;
  • three cups of pre-boiled quinoa grits;
  • a couple of tablespoons of water;
  • 0.45 Kg grated carrots;
  • one diced bell bell pepper;
  • three tablespoons olive oil;
  • three finely chopped garlic cloves.

To prepare this delicious dish, first take a deep and rather capacious frying pan and put it on the fire. Then pour into it one tablespoon of olive oil. When the oil is well heated, pour the prepared carrots into the pan. It is stewed, stirring regularly, for five minutes. After that, sweet peppers should be added to the carrots.

Continue to stew the vegetables for another three minutes. Put the contents of the pan into a bowl. Pour one tablespoon of oil into the empty pan again. Once the oil is hot, pour the prepared chicken into the skillet. It should be fried for five minutes, remembering to stir regularly.

The finished chicken poured into a bowl with vegetables, put dolichos there and mix everything thoroughly. Pour one tablespoon of oil back into the empty frying pan. When it is hot, pour the ginger, garlic and red pepper into it. The contents of the frying pan is fried for literally one minute. Then broth, soy sauce and orange juice are poured in.

Allow the mixture to come to a boil. Pour the starch into a glass and add cold water to it, mix everything well. Pour the starch into the pan while stirring constantly and simmer the mixture for two minutes. Place the dolichos with the meat and vegetables in the skillet, and stew its contents for ten minutes. Serve the finished dish together with cooked quinoa grits, sprinkling sesame seeds on top.

A delicious appetizer with dolichos and avocado

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

The savory appetizer with dolichos, avocado, onions and spices turns out very tasty and appetizing. It is usually served with croutons or chips. The first thing to do is to prepare the ingredients:

  • 0.2 kg of chips;
  • one rindless avocado cut into small cubes;
  • a quarter cup of chopped onion;
  • a couple of tablespoons of basil pesto sauce;
  • 0.32 kg of dolichos beans, boiled in advance;
  • six pieces of toast;
  • one chopped tomato;
  • three tablespoons of lime juice;
  • pepper and salt added to taste.

Start by blending the onion, avocado, dolichos, lime juice, pesto, pepper and salt in a blender until smooth. Place in a container and leave in the fridge. Then put ready pasta on a plate and garnish with chopped greens and tomatoes. Serve the dish with chips and croutons.

Dolichos with beef

Dolichos: planting and care in the open field, growing from seed

Beef and dolichos can make an extremely unusual and delicious dish.

Prepare first of all:

  • three tablespoons of vegetable oil and teriyaki sauce;
  • 0.25 kg of veal loin cut into strips;
  • one cup of dolichos boiled until fully cooked;
  • a teaspoon of crushed garlic;
  • one chili pepper and one sweet bell pepper.

In a skillet heated with oil, place the beef, which is fried for five minutes. Place it in a bowl. Pour the beans into the empty skillet and pour in some water, fry them for a couple of minutes.

After that, add the peppers to it and fry the products for another three minutes. Also add the sauce and chopped garlic, and after a couple of minutes remove the pan from the heat. The beef is combined with the vegetables, all mixed together. The dish is ready!

Hyacinth beans: cultivation and care


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