Tag Archives: seeds and plants az

Bloody Dock – “Blood Veined Sorrel” – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is two sources to get growing a plant called Bloody Dock, also known as “Blood Veined Sorrel”.  I first learned about this plant in doing research for pond plants that are edible.  While sold as a pond plant it is more accurate to say that Bloody Dock needs fertile and moist soil and can be grown in a pond on the edges as well.

Your choices to get started with this plant amount to slow and cheap or fast and expensive.  I went the expensive route but I am now  going to also go the cheap route with seed and try to make a ton of plants that way too.

Side Note – You may really want to check out Ohio Heirloom Seeds full line up of stuff, they have some really cool hard to get things.  And check out the other offerings from Florida Aquatic Nursery as well, again cool stuff you just don’t find everyday.

Okay so back to Bloody Dock and why I love this plant, well because it hits my big four.

  1. Hard to Kill
  2. Tastes Good
  3. Perennial
  4. Looks Good

What else can you ask for?  So when I got my 4 plants they looked great, I planted them and by that evening I was pretty angry, they all looked dead.  The leaves just went flat.  The next day a few perked back up, I cut the other leaves off, kept them moist and in shade.  By the end of that week they were going full on again.  Today about a month later, this is what they look like!

That one plant will produce well over a dozen divisions in early fall making the 20 dollar price tag easier to swallow.  But I like this stuff so much I am going to get some seeds and see how they go, because I would like to plant a ton of this stuff in the margins around my ponds.  Mind you ducks and geese (and I am betting chickens) think this stuff is wonderful, so make sure to provide critter protection for it.

So should you go with seeds or plants?  The choice is yours really, my understanding is propagation from seed is about as easy as seep propagation gets.  I am thinking at 20 bucks a plant I may end up with a nice little cash flow from digging them up around my pond and selling them to our egg customers at half price, 10 bucks a pop!

Using this plant as food is easy as well.  You can use it raw in salads or gently sauteed like spinach or any other green.  While this stuff is good eating like many greens it is a bit sharp on its own, but blend it with a few others and it is just amazing.

It is a spreading perennial so making more plants is easy, dig up a well established plant, separate it into smaller parts (divisions) and replant.  Even if it looks bad, new growth will soon pop up.   Note that this is best done in spring or early fall after the high heat is done for the year.  But you can do this in summer too, the key is do it in pots, and keep it in shade until the shock passes.

Again this stuff is tough to kill, what it needs though is constant moisture, which is why it is so great as a pond plant but it will do great in a well watered garden, on a shady edge that gets morning sun, etc.

So consider picking up some seeds or plants today and again check out both Ohio Heirloom Seeds and Florida Aquatic Nursery as well. I have ordered from both sellers with great results.

Remember you can always find all of our reviews at TspAz.com

Jerusalem Artichokes from Yumheart Gardens – Amazon Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Item of the day is Jerusalem Artichokes from Yumheart Gardens.  There are many sellers of Jerusalem Artichokes on Amazon but I have bought several varieties from this one and have been quite pleased with the results.

This is a plant I just think everyone should grow!  They are amazingly productive and talk about a plant you can grow almost anywhere they are hardy from USDA Zone 4A all the way up to Zone 9B.

I tried fermenting them in salt brine this year and I have to say it was my favorite way to make them so far.  You can see the very simple recipe in the PS below.  Let me tell you how my affinity for this plant began though.  All the way back in 2013 we we first moved to Nine Mile Farm a listener sent me 4 of them in a bag with a damp paper towel.  He said simply cut them in to 2-4 pieces each, make sure each piece has a nodule or two, stick them in the ground, make sure they get water and stand back.

I cut them into 10 pieces and planted them into a 10’x4′ small hugel bed.  That fall I harvested 4 five gallon buckets of them, what was left in the ground filled the bed with no replanting in 2014.  That year though I changed the purpose of that bed, it was also the last thing the chickens ruined before being gotten rid of and fully switching to ducks.

So for a year I didn’t grow any, and simply harvested a few random survivors that survived the bed conversion and the ravages of the chickens.  The fact that such survivors exist says something about this plant.

Since then I have tried a few varieties and a few sources, this one just seems like the best bang for the buck to me.  They don’t seem to be a specific variety, but they are low cost and grow very large.  Priced at 7.96 they are a great deal but shipping is 7.48 so call it roughly 16 bucks all in.  You are going to pay higher shipping on items like this because they are coming from independent sellers on Amazon (read that small businesses) who have to charge a bit more.  I find this fair enough and like to support entrepreneurs as you know.

The way to look at this though is you buy them once, if you make sure to hold over a few tubers each year for insurance, you never have to buy them again.  I also want to say I recommend a very cool red variety from this seller last year and they did well for me as well.  However, one listener bought them and was disappointed when she weighed them because they were about an ounce light of a full pound or something like that.

I would imagine that these are picked and packaged and ready to ship, it is quite reasonable that they could dry out a bit and be an ounce or two shy.  My view is so the heck what!  Again I planted 4 tubers cut into 10 pieces and got four 5-gallon buckets of harvest.

So please consider planting them as a very productive and sustainable food crop this year.  And as I said there are a lot of options on Amazon, but I have purchased several items from this seller and always been happy.  So consider planting Jerusalem Artichokes from Yumheart Gardens in your garden this year.

Remember you can always find all of our reviews at TspAz.com

P.S. – Here is my basic recipie for fermented chokes.  It is very simple, wash them well to remove all dirt and cut into pieces about as big as say a carrot stick,  put them into your fermentation vessel of choice.  I do mine in jars and really like both Masontops and FermentEm products for doing so.

Add about 10 Black Peppercorns and two cloves of garlic peeled as well.  Cover with basic brine and weight down to keep under brine.  Ferment for about 7-10 days then store in fridge to slow fermentation.

They are crisp, a bit sweet and awesome!  They also don’t make you um, “gassy” if fermented.  For basic brine use 1/2 cup of salt to the gallon of water.  Adjust to the amount you need.

P.S.S. – The best way to store them hands down is in a ziplock bag.  Put them into said bag and add a wad of damp (not wet just damp) paper towels and refrigerate and they will store for many months.  The bottom drawer is the best spot.  If you store them long enough they may begin to sprout, if so you can just remove the sprouts and eat them or plant them and they will grow out again for you.