Friday, December 27, 2013

Winged Yam Success!

My friend Mart sent me a couple of sweet pictures over the holiday in a "Merry Christmas" e-mail:

The picture aboveis of his Dioscorea alata vines... and here's what he found underneath them:

Impressive, eh? That's a jar of peanut butter in the foreground for perspective. That's ONE winged yam tuber.

Mart also reported that this was a two-year-old vine and that insects leave his vines alone. He also reported that the roots are delicious, particularly with butter like a white potato.

See why I call these puppies a perfect prepper crop?

It's probably about time to do a new survival plant profile...

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At December 29, 2013 at 7:27 AM , Blogger Dr. Mom said...

So those are the roots? Wouldn't it kill the plant to pull the roots? Or is it so prolific that killing some doesn't make much difference? How long does it live?

At December 29, 2013 at 9:08 AM , Blogger David The Good said...

Yes - that's the root. It does kill the plant to pull the roots; however, the vine creates multiple hanging "bulbils" that you can plant the next spring. They'll grow underground into big new tubers by the next fall. Bonus: you can eat those hanging bulbils, too, if you have extras.

At December 29, 2013 at 9:02 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

One other thing: they'll die back every year in the fall, then come right back from the root. It's a perennial that adds new extensions to its underground tuber every year.

At January 7, 2014 at 4:18 PM , Blogger Pharren said...

It's so difficult to get ahold of these if you can't find them in the wild and don't know anyone with some. :(

At January 7, 2014 at 4:23 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

If you're near Ocala, I can show you where some are growing.

At January 10, 2014 at 1:29 PM , Blogger Pharren said...

Thank you! But I actually just found a web site that has them, along with a lot of other interesting plants. I just ordered some things from there, so I'll post back when I get it to say if it's legit or not.

At January 10, 2014 at 1:32 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

Good find. Please let me know - if they're good, I'll link to them.


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