Sunchoke, Sunroot, Canadian Truffle or Jerusalem
Artichoke (Helianthus tuberosus)
The Livingseeds variety of Jerusalem Artichoke is called Samson, this is a particularly large-tubered and robust version of Jerusalem Artichoke.
An ancient domesticated plant from central North America, this long lived, perennial relative of the common sunflower was spread by trade and agriculture by Native Americans throughout North and Central America.
It grows as a tall (2m+) cluster of stems topped with hundreds of small, yellow sunflowers throughout summer.
The flower petals are edible, and very pretty in salad, but despite the “artichoke” label, the real vegetable here is not the flowers but the incredibly numerous, superficially ginger-like storage tubers of the plant.
These roots are edible raw or cooked, with a sweet crunchy texture when raw. When roasted or boiled they have a delicious, sweet artichoke flavour that is quite distinctive.
The roots have about 2% protein, no oil, and little starch but rich in the carbohydrate inulin (8 to 13%), which is a polymer of the monosaccharide fructose.
Tubers stored for any length of time convert their inulin into its component fructose. Inulin is not assimilated by the intestines, making it a dietary fibre and prebiotic, so does not cause a glycaemic spike. In other words, this a low GI “starchy” vegetable!
This plant is hugely productive, but is a long season grower. Tubers can be planted from mid-winter to early spring and the harvest is ready from the first frosts after summer, so plant this in an area of your veggie garden where it can grow undisturbed.
One can leave the tubers in the ground and dig as necessary for the kitchen. There will always be enough left in place to start the sunchoke patch up again in spring, and the tubers store and flavour best in cold soil.
Yields can be extremely high if the plant is allowed to spread freely or only lightly contained, and the soil in which it is planted is kept moist during the growing season.
Tubers are best planted in moist soil directly where they are to grow. Sprouting of the tubers takes place without warning in early spring so best planted early.
Plant can spread aggressively in moist soil. Easily contained with bamboo barrier, bidem or a raised planter however. Prefers full sun, dies down in winter and frost causes the tubers to sweeten. Can be grown in very large pots.Must have consistent moisture during the growing season.
*A word of warning: the process of inulin digestion can cause flatulence in some people, leading to the plants other common name “fartichokes”.
Qty: 3 tubers packed in soil.
Jerusalem Artichokes ~ Samson Artichokes
- Product Code: 1-LS001
- Availability: In Stock
- Ex Tax: R45.00