Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Discovering New Foods at Community Garden

We have had some exciting plantings in our shared areas at Varsity Lakes Community Garden.

The gardener who established these areas was innovative and creative in his choice of plants and we are just beginning to discover what special gifts he has bequeathed.

Below is a Taro Plant he planted. Someone had removed one of the roots incorrectly and rot was setting in to the plant, but two garden members from New Guinea were able to save the day.





The solution was to havest the corms correctly.

This involved lifting the plant from the ground, removing the  corms and replanting the plant with some leaves removed to give it a good start.

Pups and small Taro seedlings were separated at this time and planted separately.

The corms may be boiled, baked, fried, barbecued or as in this case taken home by to be made into a curry with coconut milk to be shared with other  members.









 After the Taro was brought back to life my New Guinea friends introduced me to the Cassava plant below also flourishing in our shared garden areas.

This plant is a vital staple for  500 million people world wide. The starchy roots produce more food energy per unit of land than any other staple crop. Its leaves are also commonly eaten as a vegetable in parts of Asia and Africa, and  provide vitamins and protein. Nutritionally, the cassava is comparable to potatoes, except that it has twice the fiber content and a higher level of potassium.

Our New Guinea Members can also show us how this plant is harvested correctly.









6 comments:

EG Wow said...

Very interesting. You can grow such different food plants in Australia than we can in Canada. I have grown taro as an ornamental plant (as an annual) but of course the season here is way too short to grow it as a vegetable. The cassava is totally new to me.

Denise said...

One of the reasons I love blogging so much is that I enjoy learning from other bloggers. This post is great, thank you.

Gardening in a Sandbox said...

I have eaten cassava in Costa Rica but I have not had Taro. The plants grown here would be strickly ornamental. Thanks for sharing them.

Karen said...

What an educational post! I have heard of cassava but never knew of its importance as a food crop. Very interesting!

Allie said...

Living in the mid-west, we only eat taro when we are in Hawaii. I didn't know it was actually any good for you :)
Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie.
I can't wait to see what you have next week!
AllieMakes.Blogspot.com

Rambling Woods said...

I will have to enjoy your garden as mine is heading into winter. You have inspired me to try to plant some vegetables next season..thank you for all the good information...Michelle