The Value of Jerusalem Artichokes

This “weed” looks like a bumpy potato and is related to the Sunflower (the energy goes to the root more than the seeds in this case).  They produce terrific amount of flatulence for most consumers. (They are composed of an indigestible inulin; this side effect can be remedied by (a.) harvesting in the spring–the cold of winter helps convert the inulin into a more digestible form. (b.) cooking with ginger or other “digesting-aid” herbs (c.) cooking them well– ie. if you have a delicate digestive track, do not eat them raw!)

Despite its rustic nature, it turns out to be a very valuable crop.

These perennials were the beginning of a big trip to the city.  We exchanged them (and a few other goodies from our greenhouse) for a wide array of plants and animals.  Here is what came home with us:

1. Tulips

2. Horseradish

3. Chickens

4. Bamboo

5.  Rhubarb

6. A peonie

7. Raspberries

8. Apple Rootstock

You can see that the rootstock is already trying to sprout out of the joints on the stem!  We planted the rootstock on its side and new plants will grow out of the stem.  This process is called stool bedding.

Just about all of our treasures are not planted out and with a week of sun predicted, we have begun to work on our well, but more on that later…

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