The big winner in my garden this year is the beans. We planted the variety 'Royal Burgundy', which I knew would produce purple beans, but I didn't realize that they would be such an intense, dark shade of purple (I suppose some people might even call it burgundy):
There are many reasons why I'm pleased with this variety of bean. First, the germination was quite good, even though we had a lot of cool weather this spring. Then, the plants themselves are fairly attractive. They are a very dark green colour, with a purple tinge to the stems and leaves, and dark purple flowers. The beans themselves are also dark purple, although they are mostly hidden from marauding rabbits by the leaves. The contrasting colours make it very easy to pick the beans, however, and you're not likely to miss any because you didn't see them. The plants are no taller than two feet, and require no support of any kind.
Another benefit of growing bush beans, such as Royal Burgundy, is that a lot of beans develop all at once, instead of a few beans ripening every couple of days, as with pole beans. This means that with not very many plants, you can still get enough to cook up for dinner, instead of never having enough for everybody. The plants won't produce for as long, but when they are done, you can always rip them out and plant something else.
The beans are green inside, and when you cook them, they turn from purple to green after a couple of minutes. The colour change can actually be used as a timer for blanching if you are planning to freeze them. Finally, the flavour is pretty good, and the beans are not stringy and remain tender even when they're pretty large. When served to four kids under the age of five, they all wanted to eat them both purple (raw) and green (cooked), so I count that as a major success.