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Growing Jerusalem Artichokes, also Sunchoke

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec

(Best months for growing Jerusalem Artichokes in USA - Zone 5a regions)

P = Plant tubers

  • Easy to grow. Plant tubers about 5cm (1.5") deep.. Best planted at soil temperatures between 46°F and 59°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 12 - 18 inches apart
  • Harvest in 15-20 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Tomatoes, cucumbers
  • Artichoke harvest
    Artichoke harvest

These are the edible root of a sunflower. Plant the tubers deep enough to cover with soil. They are quite drought-tolerant, but keep well-watered to grow larger tubers. They grow through the summer to 1.5m-tall sunflowers with a smallish flower. Dig up the tubers when the flowers die down in autumn.

Get a couple of tubers from the supermarket or fruit shop. Two years after planting you will probably have enough to give away. Perennial, if you don't manage to harvest all the tubers - they will regrow year after year.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Jerusalem Artichokes

Scrape clean or peel (add a tsp of lemon or vinegar to the water to stop the tubers browning). Steam, boil, or use in artichoke soup (make with artichokes and some stock). Caution - because they contain 'resistent starch' Jerusalem Artichokes are a great promoter of flatulence in some individuals.

Your comments and tips

29 Oct 16, marie (USA - Zone 11b climate)
Does anyone have any knowledge of Jerusalem artichokes sunchokes growing in Hawaii?

No one responded so I will. I do not know for certain. I shop at farmer's market where 2 organic farmers grow and sell these. Both know I grow much of my own food. The guy I normally buy these from never suggested I plant any.. He had ended for the season and I purchased from the other grower. She was telling everyone to plant some of what they buy. HOWEVER she often sales pitches to clear out stock. Also they are zone 4 - 5 -along the river near Kamloops.. I'm at much higher elevation in an unpredictable area. I long ago quit buying zone 4 plants due to cold snaps that hit every few years. I'm going to try a couple roots this fall if I can get them in this week. (end Oct, 1st of Nov -the next snow might stay). If you have access to them I suggest you try a few too. All the local growers who are at warmer elevations than I start their garlic in the fall and say it needs the extra growing time. These may need the settling in time too. Trial and error is the best bet in these climates. I'm on a hillside and after 30+ years still marvel how some plants do well in one area but not 10-15 meters away. I think it's related to underground moisture. Good luck!

- rita near kamllops

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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