Saturday, April 30, 2011

April Beans

2010 was a tough year for bean pickers. I didn't search as many times as in the previous year and when I did the pickins were slim.

So far it looks like 2011 may be a better year. The higher tides and strong south winds have been producing heavy loads of sargassum.

We had a few opportunities to look for beans and found some keepers already. I found this sea heart and sea purse in just a few minutes after supper one evening.

The next day Tracy found this tropical walnut on a leisurely stroll near the beach access road.

A couple of weeks later we again took a short walk and I found a Mary's bean and another sea heart.

The last weekend in April the strong south winds continued to pile up the sargassum. The county has not yet started using the motor grader on the beach yet so with a little luck the sun will dry out the seaweed and expose some of the hidden treasure.

I found a few more hearts including this one crusted over with sea growth and a couple of hamburger beans.

I was surprised to find another Mary's bean before ending our search for the day.

This may be a sign of a great year for beans!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Fiji Beans

My friends Edie and Maree brought me a treasure trove of beans from their trip to the Fiji islands.

Some were easily recognizable like this candlenut.

Others were specimens I have wanted ever since I saw my first one. This is a box fruit and when I saw one on display at the Padre Island National Seashore visitor center I knew it would be on my list.

This was another excellent find - a screw pine seed. It is part of a large seed that looks like a pineapple.

I think this is a crabwood.

This interesting seed is called Cerbera odollan. I haven't found it's common name yet.

These are similar to sea hearts but are a different variety called snuff box beans.

These are likely not drift seeds but instead are seeds from a local beach plant.

This may be a sea pea.

These are some nice laurelwoods.

This is the Asian swamp lily.

These are some intact tropical almonds. Most of what I find are not in this good shape.

Last but not least are these three beans that resemble hamburger beans. I have some work ahead of me to see what they will look like after polishing!

These are yet unidentified so I will keep looking until I solve the mystery.