If you are a gardener, you are likely planning what to plant for the 2022 growing season right about now. I wanted to put in a plug for sunchoke tubers for lots of reasons:
- the tubers are versatile and make delicious soups, roasted or stir-fried vegetables, “pickles”, and raw salad garnish.
- they are low-glycemic or low starch even though they resemble potatoes–the carbohydrate in them is called inulin and is a good gut microbe prebiotic. See this recipe for how to roast them–I recently mixed 2 small potatoes, 4 large sunchokes and 1/2 sweet red pepper with the seasonings in the recipe.
- they are easy to grow and prolific–meaning 1 plant makes A LOT of tubers (see the picture which shows 1 plant being dug up).
- the tubers remaining in the ground will make a new crop the following year.
- they store very well in the ground over winter (as long as you mulch them heavily with straw or leaves) so you can dig them up as you need them.
- the beautiful sunflower-like yellow flower is enjoyed by pollinators and makes a nice cut flower (the painter Monet thought so) if you can reach it! (plants can reach 8 ft. tall).
- they spread which is good as long as they are harvested so keep them in a restricted area of the garden. Give them a try!