Our very best snap bean for fresh eating, freezing, or processing, the Empress bean offers incredible flavor. The vigorous plants produce heavy yields of large, straight, green, 5-6” stringless pods. Plant in succession for fresh beans throughout the season. Introduced by Gurney’s in 1979 as Experimental Bean 121 and later renamed Empress.
- 55 days
- ±1,500 seeds/lb
- Bush habit
- Best Seller
- Our best fresh-eating snap bean
- 5-6" stringless pods
- Heavy yields
Instructions - Sow seeds outdoors after danger of frost has passed and soil and air temperatures have warmed. Harvest frequently for increased yields.
- Direct Seed: 2" Apart
- Seed Depth: 1"
- Rows Apart: 36-48"
- Light: Full Sun
Ratings & Reviews
Easy and prolific
These bush beans are very easy to grow and produce a lot of beans. This is my second year growing them.
Staple for any garden
by Jason (North Florida)
Nearly 100% germination with wet paper towel in a plastic bag. Leaves get hammered in the 90+ degree Florida sun, however they are solid producers from a raised bed watered twice weekly.
by Freeman Godwin
grows awesome and produces extremely well here in SE NC. Recommend it to anyone!
Best flavor and texture of any bush bean I've ever grown. Produce and grow well in NE Iowa.
by Sara (IN)
The best! Easy to save, too. Delicious.
A family favorite!
A go to every year! A hit with the whole family, especially the toddlers! Not many left to freeze because they all get eaten!
Great bean that's easy to grow
I have a pretty bad track record with most plants I try to grow, but these beans have done great. I'm in the south Georgia area, and sowed my seeds directly in the garden bed and had beans to eat 2 months later. They taste good and continue to produce. I only wish I had planted more seeds.
Needed to Plant More!
This is about the 8th type of green bean we’ve grown and is by far our favorite. We direct-seeded and all but one grew into a healthy plant. This produces easily twice the volume of our other beans and tastes better than them all. Plus no strings for anyone to choke on. We want to save some seeds for next year, but we also just want to eat them all, so I’ll likely be buying more seeds from SSE next year.
Fed us for months and still producing!
by Jean Hee
Fed my family for months. Still producing, even as temperatures have dropped in Northern Illinois.
Not good for dry windy areas.
Three different growing seasons I tried to grow these beans. I don't think they do well in a dry windy climate. The plants grew a bit sparsely, and while every flower did turn into a bean, I was not able to harvest more than we could use at a single meal at any given time.
I have had great success with other bean varieties, I think they just didn't care for the dry windy climate we have here in Kansas.
Strangely low germination rates.
Strangely have been having low germination rates. I have tried the standard method for starting green beans, as well as two other methods-all with low germination rates. Unsure why. The plants that do emerge are happy, but consistently low germination rates, no matter the method I use. I'm an intermediate gardener and have gotten very challenging seeds to sprout, so I'm wondering if I accidentally received older stock? Germination methods/planting styles tested so far: soak overnight and direct sow, soak overnight and start off in pots (very worst germination rates overall), soak for only 6 hours and direct sow.
This is my first year growing these beans and wow! what a producer. Each plant produces so many beans that the plants fell over from the weight of the beans. I've planted again for a second crop and will be planting them again next year.
Empress are the Best
Empress beans are the best. I'd never grown them before, but will from now on. I had a small area and only 1 pack of seeds, but even with eating some fresh a few times, had over two gallons to freeze.