Planting Healthy Hibiscus, Delicious Yacon and Nutritious Sunchokes

| 5/15/2012 12:27:01 PM

Tags: Storage Vegetables, Roselle, Hibiscus, Jerusalem Artichokes, Sunchokes, Winter Roots, Southern Gardening, Gardening in the Southeast, Yacon, Ira Wallace,


 Thai red roselle roselle 

Last week as I was preparing to plant our Roselle, Hibiscus sabdariffa, Mother Earth News editor Cheryl Long shared this comment from a reader, “there was an article about hibiscus flower tea lowering blood pressure. I followed the recipe and after 1 month my BP is normal! Even with meds I remained at 155/98 and have had trips to the ER over it, but now it is 117/71, normal!” At the Southern Exposure Seed Exchange farm, we love growing our day length neutral strain of Thai Red Roselle for a refreshing summer drink, a delicious cranberry like jam or sauce and tangy leaves to add to summer salads as well as its blood pressure lowering properties. You can read my article to learn how to grow your own Roselle.

more sweet potato slipssweet potato ginseng 

Our new certified sweet potato grower Clif Slade stopped by the farm today to drop off All Purple and Porto Rico sweet potato slips for our first shipment. Clif used to be an extension agent in Surrey County for many years, and he was full of useful tips on growing these fabulous plants. I’ve always known it was important to wait for the soil to be warm enough before planting, but how warm? And how do you measure?

Cliff says his daddy always planted sweet potatoes on Memorial Day weekend, but a more scientific way is to test first with a soil thermometer. When the soil has been 65 degrees for a week, it’s warm enough (testing every day at 10 am.) 

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