Hyacinth beans (Lablab purpureus) are fun to grow. They sprout easily, grow quickly, and have pretty flowers and seed pods. They are not terribly well suited to this area, since we have weather that is too hot and too dry, as well as freezes, so this perennial must be grown as an annual. However, with a lot of extra water, the vines do well, and produce the long racemes of purple flowers which give the plant its common name. Sometimes, the lower part of a plant even survives the winter, to sprout again in the spring, but this is rare. Besides purple flowers, the hyacinth bean has purple stems and purple seed pods and the leaves have purple veining. The beans are edible.
Insects and predators are drawn to the abundant flowers and fleshy pods. In the last three photos, a green lynx spider hunts in the foliage, a long-jawed orb weaver hides amongst the blossoms, and a yucca plant bug rests on one of the seed pods from which they often extract sap.