Friday, May 27, 2011

Moose Tubers!!!

My sunchokes are here! After ordering them in February from Fedco, I thought it would be forever before I received them.

Sunchokes (Helianthus tuberosus), also known as Jerusalem Artichokes, are a sunflower relative and a part of the Moose Tubers program at Fedco Seeds. They offer three varieties: Waldspinel, Skorospelka, and Clearwater.

I ruled out the Waldspinel despite its rose color since it is prone to knobbiness. The Skorospelka is regarded a favorite among cooks since it's relatively knob-free. I chose the Clearwater because they are knobless and Will Bonsall's favorite. He is one of the directors of Seed Savers Exchange and the sunchoke curator. I decided to trust him and try it out. I'm slightly concerned they are the slowest to break dormancy, but hopefully with our south-facing bed next to the warm house it won't be an issue. At least they are said to be tender into the fall. I can also wait until the following spring to harvest them.

The small box--a perfect 3" cube--arrived with a paper bag of bulbs inside.
A one-pound bag contained at least 10 bulbs. I planted two patches up against the front porch. With their lemon yellow daisy-like flowers, I think they will be a nice back drop to the cistus, catmint, and asphodel. And the color will pop in front of our dark red house.

One thing I was warned about these little tubers is they spread and can be hard to eradicate. I'm hoping they don't travel around too much! I can't wait to harvest my first batch and make them into a creamy, garlic-y puree this coming fall. I'll keep you posted when they sprout.

No comments: