Golden trees and Sunchokes

26 Dec


It was warm and wet the last few days so there was a small chance of some oyster mushrooms in a local sugar maple woods, but after a short look I was satisfied to move on, especially while seeing the early morning sun color these sturdy maples golden.


Interesting to walk into a familiar place which suddenly looks so new, never suspected this was a golden forest during a certain sun.


Back home it seemed a good time to unearth some Sunchoke tubers which is the variety I found in the early 90s from a vacant lot in a small town I was working in then, these ones have been in my indicator garden wherever I’m living ever since.  That town was bordering a large fresh water marsh and I was finding many different types of Sunchokes in that area, most varieties grow between 6 to 9 feet tall and flower in the fall, there was one large tan colored tuber variety growing out in the marsh on heavy clay which had a stem only 3 feet high and blown even lower in the grass by the strong marsh winds, I should go back and gather that one some day to try in the garden. In the marsh they were extremely hard to dig in the compact clay though they were large tubered and smooth skinned and may grow the same in more workable soils?


Here is a closer look at these healthy tubers which people in the eastern part of Canada can harvest anytime during the winter that the ground isn’t frozen. This as many of you know is the one tuber bearing member of the Sunflower family Heliantus tuberosus, while the wild smaller tuber type is quite common on river floodplains and is native to North America, some of the other larger varieties like the ones in the photos which you will encounter at abandon farms, vacant lots and disturbed soils are possibly types developed in both Europe and NA. These ones in the photos I’ve moved to a few different areas as well, mostly places I know I may pass by in the fall to spring months, they don’t spread much and if I don’t harvest them the local voles or other rodents will have some good eating, I’ll try something different and lacto ferment a few of these ones I’ve collected today. ciao


5 Responses to “Golden trees and Sunchokes”

  1. Hilda December 28, 2014 at 11:17 pm #

    Lovely photographs, and beautiful purple sunchokes. We have a golden forest nearby, but the colour is fleeting and I have never been able to photograph it when it appears.

    • 1left December 29, 2014 at 6:24 pm #

      I suspected I may not capture this golden moment as well as I needed to drive up a narrow road to park and then walk back to the spot which took a couple minutes, I was pleased to see the forest had remained in this shade and I got the photos and also a short walk through these golden sugar maples to boot.

  2. Isaac Yuen April 17, 2015 at 2:31 am #

    What a great haul of sunchokes! I love their taste but can’t digest them very well 😦

    • 1left April 17, 2015 at 11:31 pm #

      Isaac you may want to try lacto fermenting sunchokes as it should solve the digestion issue, plus you with also gain a healthy probiotic from the ferment. For my body the below recipe was the most pleasant food surprise of the year. ———————————————————…/taking-the-wind-out-of-jerusalem-artichoke

      • Isaac Yuen May 10, 2015 at 12:21 am #

        Interesting… maybe I’ll give that a try. They are very tasty!

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