Long bean (Vigna unguiculata L. Walp. ssp. sesquipedalis), also known as asparagus bean and Asian yardlong bean, is the vegetable type of cowpea, a climate-resilient and nutritious food legume grown by Southeast Asian farmers in the Central Valley of California and marketed to Asian immigrant communities across the United States.
The project entitled "Varietal Improvement of Fresh-Market Long Bean to Overcome Biotic Stresses and Expand Production" is led by Dr. Bao-Lam Huynh. Funding for this effort is provided by CDFA - Specialty Crop Block Grant Program (ca.gov).
This project addresses the aphid problem. All local varieties in small farms are susceptible to this pest. Reinfection from adjacent fields is problematic, requiring frequent chemical sprays.
This project also addresses the root-knot nematode problem in commercial vegetable systems. Effective nematode control requires inclusion of nematode resistant or non-host crops in rotations to suppress nematode population.