This tall (up to 3m) perennial is a relative of the sunflower. It is so vigorous and easy to grow that, while it can be useful to add height, divide areas or provide shade, it can quickly become a weed if not controlled. The best strategy is to make sure that you harvest all the tubers each year. Alternatively, surround roots with some sort of barrier.
While buying from seed catalogues is the best approach for variety and guaranteed productivity, it is perfectly acceptable to buy tubers from your local greengrocer and plant those.
The delicious tubers can be treated in much the same way as a potato - my favourite is sauteed with garlic, a bay leaf and a splash of white wine vinegar. If you haven't tried them before, start cautiously as some people suffer from uncomfortable flatulence!
|pH||6.5 - 7.0|