These knobbly root tubers are a perennial plant. They are very easy to grow and are high yielding.
Once you plant them, they will emerge each year and can spread like a weed if you are not careful. It can be difficult to remove them from your garden unless you are careful to remove each and every tuber.
They are similar to potatoes in their uses in the kitchen but are supposed to be healthier, but I can't remember why!
They are related to the sunflower. They provide beautiful tall plants during the summer that die back after hard frost. They can grow to ten plus feet.
They are very hardy and do not suffer much from pests and disease, they need little to no maintenance. You can harvest them as you need them after the first frost, the remainder will overwinter happily in the soil until they are required.
This is our first year to harvest them. We planted three tubers that we bought at a farmers market last year. They are difficult to find here and I haven't seen them since for sell.
Those three tubers have produced a large yield. We have harvested a large buckets worth of them so far. The rest we will leave for deeper winter.
I set aside 20-30 small tubers that I have planted along a wall to provide shelter and privacy.
They seem like a wonderful veg that it surprises me that more people don't grow them. Do you?