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New strain of hyacinth bean in mass cultivation

LOCALS will be able to taste a new strain of hyacinth bean developed by Shanghai Jiao Tong University, schools officials said today.

Compared with ordinary beans which require trellis to grow, the new variety can grow horizontally as other vegetables.

"Each mu (15 mu equal a hectare) can yield more than 1,000 yuan (US$154.4) with lower cost and increased harvest," said Wu Tianlong, professor of SJTUs School of Agriculture and Biology.

Wu began to cultivate new strains of beans in 1998. He said Japan, India and the United States are more advanced in bean research while China is lagging in this field. "Many Chinese hyacinth bean varieties are degrading," Wu said.

The new strain developed by his research team can be harvested at least a week ahead of ordinary strains and is more resistant to pests. Moreover, its beans taste better, sweeter and tender.

Wu has offered seeds to local farmers at no cost and Shanghai people will soon be able to find the new beans on the market.


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