Jerusalem Artichoke (Helianthus Tuberosus L.) uses/values- Report by University Extensions

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MuddyFarms

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Found a report on Jerusalem Artichoke from the Alternative Field Crops Manual by several university extension services. It gives information about uses, including human food and and animal forage production. It mentions best times to harvest forage and tubers and what the impact is on the production of both. I liked that they included a feeding value and forage quality table comparing tubers and tops separately with other feed items. The second table there shows what the effect is of harvesting the tops at various times of year on the amount of tubers produced. Of course, the report also covers other growing, harvesting, and economics of growing Jerusalem Artichokes.




Feel free to add onto this thread helpful links or reports you may have on this useful plant!


OH-HERE IS ANOTHER:

This one lists crude protein for aerial parts as 15.3% and for tubers as 7.4%. The nutritional attributes tab section for rabbits is of particular interest, saying that the fresh tubers have more nutritional benefit than fodder beets, among other things.
 
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Zee-Man

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Sunchokes are very good plants. The tuber is human edible. It can be cooked as one would potatoes It can be sliced thin and eaten raw also.. The tubers have phenol that are conducive to lacto bacters and other gut flora. As such they are great pre-biotics. Those that are new to promoting gut health should take it easy since this proliferation causes gas in plentiful amounts.

I've not tried tubers on with rabbits. However, the entire rest of the plant is rabbit edible. My rabbits eat it preferentially. This year, on a whim I gave them the dead and dried stalks that I had reserved for spring shredding into the compost. They ate those stalks preferentially too! They beat out pellets with molasses in them! This year I will cut the stalks earlier for drying and winter forage.
 

arachyd

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Those that are new to promoting gut health should take it easy since this proliferation causes gas in plentiful amounts.
For this reason we call them fartichokes. Rabbits love the stalks, leaves and flowers. I have not fed them tubers. For humans they are great for diabetics since they have a high inulin content which, unlike potatoes, actually slows the rate you absorb the sugars.
 

Preitler

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I eat, and feed the tubers throughout winter until they start to sprout, I dig up a bucketfull each time which lasts me a week.
Rabbits love it, and I have not seen any adverse effects whatsoever. I don't feed much of the greens since I use the plants to shadow the hutches.
In winter I feed a small handfull of fresh stuff in addition to the hay, Topinambur, apples, pumpkin - and some cabbage and carrots if I get them cheap.
 
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MuddyFarms

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After posting this, I realized they were the same links/reports as @michaels4gardens posted already!

 

HTAcres

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I am on my second try to get sunchokes started. I laugh when I read the cautions. So hard to get stuff started here. My two year old bamboo is barely 3 ft tall this year. Hopefully the sunchokes will make it this time and not get eaten by mice or whatever it was.
 

Zee-Man

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I am on my second try to get sunchokes started. I laugh when I read the cautions. So hard to get stuff started here. My two year old bamboo is barely 3 ft tall this year. Hopefully the sunchokes will make it this time and not get eaten by mice or whatever it was.
I seem to recall you are in Texas. That really only gives me a temperature range. I would have to know more about your soil. What plants do you have success with?
 

MnCanary

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I seem to recall you are in Texas. That really only gives me a temperature range. I would have to know more about your soil. What plants do you have success with?
Exactly. Grow what works for you. There are thousands of plants to choose from. Stop trying to grow the varieties that don't thrive where you are. People would come into the garden center and say something like "I've planted three trees in this spot and they all die". My answer was "stop doing that".
 

HTAcres

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I seem to recall you are in Texas. That really only gives me a temperature range. I would have to know more about your soil. What plants do you have success with?
I am in the high desert (3500 ft) of Odessa/Midland. The zone is 8 or 8a depending on where you look, we must be on a line. However, I am excited to report that my second planting of 3 different kinds worked!!! I have sprouts and little plants. My soil is mostly clay where it isn't outright limerock. So I have gone to mostly using containers. Also trying straw bales this year. The tomatoes actually like the bales but with 50% shade cloth. Not intuitive I know but boy is the sun intense. In fact, I think we will be doing more shadecloth - that was really almost a mistake. A couple a places we dug a trench with our back hoe and then filled it with a combo of the dirt and bunny hay but a long way to go before that makes for a friable soil. If I am not careful, it just makes a really great brick. The bunny hay that has been through the chicken coop works best.
 

Zee-Man

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I am in the high desert (3500 ft) of Odessa/Midland. The zone is 8 or 8a depending on where you look, we must be on a line. However, I am excited to report that my second planting of 3 different kinds worked!!! I have sprouts and little plants. My soil is mostly clay where it isn't outright limerock. So I have gone to mostly using containers. Also trying straw bales this year. The tomatoes actually like the bales but with 50% shade cloth. Not intuitive I know but boy is the sun intense. In fact, I think we will be doing more shadecloth - that was really almost a mistake. A couple a places we dug a trench with our back hoe and then filled it with a combo of the dirt and bunny hay but a long way to go before that makes for a friable soil. If I am not careful, it just makes a really great brick. The bunny hay that has been through the chicken coop works best.
I was certain it was a soil problem. Sunchokes like a loose soil. They will grow in heavy clay as long as it is tilled. They will thrive much more if it is deeply broken up and amended with plenty of organic matter to maintain the loose nature. The orgainic matter will also help to maintain moisture. You should also check out hugelculture. Hugelculture will help not only with soil issues as would a raised bed or containers but will greatly aid in water retention. The picture shows a small hugel that I made for my herb garden. It is of course newly planted in the photo. A raised bed hugel might be perfect. Learn more about hugelculture at permies.com.
 

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HTAcres

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I was certain it was a soil problem. Sunchokes like a loose soil. They will grow in heavy clay as long as it is tilled. They will thrive much more if it is deeply broken up and amended with plenty of organic matter to maintain the loose nature. The orgainic matter will also help to maintain moisture. You should also check out hugelculture. Hugelculture will help not only with soil issues as would a raised bed or containers but will greatly aid in water retention. The picture shows a small hugel that I made for my herb garden. It is of course newly planted in the photo. A raised bed hugel might be perfect. Learn more about hugelculture at permies.com.
So funny, I just found permies.com. And yes, where they are growing is largely loose organic matter rather than the native soil. Appreciate your help!!
 

arachyd

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I started 3 tubers 3/26/21 in a plant pot to prevent them from taking over my small property. They did well in a mixture of Promix with a bit of rabbit manure. They did well and I dug all of them up and put them in a fabric grow bag for the winter, covered by the same mix because there were a lot of them. This spring I put them into 2 10-gallon fabric grow bags and they've got them so filled I have to separate the leaves to water them. It's only been a year. The only problem I've seen other than they multiply rapidly is that they are water hogs. As soon as the weather gets warm they wilt by 10 am in direct sun and I have to water them twice a day. I know fabric pots cause faster drying but I have other plants in the same kind of pots that don't need so much water. If you really want to grow them definitely use loose soil, a good compost with lots of organic matter and watch for wilting so you can judge how much water to give them.
 

HTAcres

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I started 3 tubers 3/26/21 in a plant pot to prevent them from taking over my small property. They did well in a mixture of Promix with a bit of rabbit manure. They did well and I dug all of them up and put them in a fabric grow bag for the winter, covered by the same mix because there were a lot of them. This spring I put them into 2 10-gallon fabric grow bags and they've got them so filled I have to separate the leaves to water them. It's only been a year. The only problem I've seen other than they multiply rapidly is that they are water hogs. As soon as the weather gets warm they wilt by 10 am in direct sun and I have to water them twice a day. I know fabric pots cause faster drying but I have other plants in the same kind of pots that don't need so much water. If you really want to grow them definitely use loose soil, a good compost with lots of organic matter and watch for wilting so you can judge how much water to give them.
I just planted Comfrey in the big fabric bags. If necessary, I will transfer the sunchokes to some as well.
 

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