Excellent soil-builder, which is its main use in Belize, where our seed was grown. This plant has also been considered a powerful medicinal crop in Ayurvedic medicine since ancient times to treat a host of ailments from anxiety to parasitic infections to snake bites. Now the plant is used to treat the effects of Parkinson’s disease. Seeds can also be roasted and used as a non-caffeinated coffee substitute. In Belize, it’s called the fertilizer bean. Rampant vines produce tons of organic matter where summers are long, hot and humid. And being a legume, it fixes nitrogen in the soil. Velvet bean is often used as a quick annual fodder or silage crop. Makes gorgeous large trusses of lilac to deep purple flowers, reminiscent of wisteria. Where seasons are long enough, produces spotted beans which can be eaten after proper pre-soaking treatment. Also highly regarded among many herbal traditions for a variety of ailments. Minute hairs on flowers and seed pods can cause intense itching, explaining another of its common names--Cow Itch Plant.