Friday, July 15, 2016

July 15th, 2016; 9:20P.M.; Friday; 82 degrees outside; 23901

Hello there,
these past couple of weeks have been strange, not just in strange in feeling seems I've seen a change, all around me. Physically and mentally I'm not sure how to explain it.
Anyway today I spent mowing, first I mowed the outside of the fence then I spent the next couple hours mowing the inside of the fence. Going around my (Wild) Jerusalem Artichoke, or some call them Sun Chokes you know these very pretty tubers that are yellow with brown centers. Did you know they are kin to the Sun Flowers? Yes and they are wild and free...tubers. Sun Flowers aren't tubers you are aware they come from seeds. I apologize about my typing today, day after tomorrow, Sunday, I'll be on a flight heading to Zion, Illinois. Nervous, yea a little. I know you are praying for me? Right? Thank you and I sincerely thank you. I know you don't know me but who Cares? I can still pray for you don't need to know your name God does!
Just send me your prayer needs, no problem.
Anyway, Jerusalem Artichokes, sun chokes put energy into spreading via tuberous roots instead.  The whole plant is rough-hairy, with a single, stout, erect stalk 6 to 12 feet tall,  into the wild.
branching toward the top.
Slender,  lance-shaped to oval, three-ribbed, lightly toothed, pointed long-stalked leaves grow along the stem.  They're 6 to 10 inches long and 2 to 4 inches wide, broadest near the base- alternate toward the top of the plant, opposite near the bottom.
  Each plant has several flower heads, 2 to 3.5 inches broad, that look more like overgrown daisy flower heads than reduced sunflower heads. Each has twelve to twenty yellow rays emerging from a yellow, central disk.
     This colonial perennial spreads via rhizomes and tubers instead of seeds. It stores food in tubers, identical to commercial Jerusalem artichokes. These lumpy, beige vegetables are the size of small potatoes, with crisp, white flesh inside.
     The plant is easiest to identify in the summer, when it's flowering.  It's harder to identify in the winter, when the tubers resemble bulbs, like those of the poisonous iris.  However, bulbs are layered, tubers are solid.
     Jerusalem artichokes grow in poor, light soil, but not where there's excessive wetness.  Look for them along roadsides, in fields, thickets, waste places, near streams, ponds, railways, and highways. They're native to the Great Plains, but Indians planted them in other regions, so you sometimes find them on the East Coast, and west up to the Rocky Mountains.  They're also cultivated for food, and often escape into the wild.
     In Italian the plant is called girasole articiocco.  Girasole refers to the way that the plant turns to face the sun, and this word was corrupted to "Jerusalem."  Articiocco is Italian for "artichoke," but the reason for naming it artichoke is unclear- the plants are unrelated and dissimilar.
      The tubers are best from late fall to the early spring.  You can dig them up anytime the ground isn't frozen.  Raw, they're light and sweet, more like water chestnuts than potatoes.  They're also great baked in their skins.  In general, you can cook them any way you would cook potatoes.  However, they don't fry crispy like potatoes, and they become creamy when mashed.
     They have fewer calories than potatoes, and they're especially high in vitamin A and B-complex, potassium and phosphorus.  They contain insulin instead of starch, which makes them very good for diabetics and hypoglycemic.
 I'm a hoping you enjoyed this. I couldn't get to my information about the Jerusalem artichoke-  sun choke, had to take an opportunity to LEARN!  If you know more will you lease share it with me/us??
  I  sincerely thank you, Linda G..