Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Edible Lappa Burdock
Burdock has been the bane of my existance for the past three years! I have spent a few entire afternoons going about with the clippers, cutting off any and all flower stalks that grow on the rosette of leaves that has spread all over my property.
Burdock is a biennial. It germinates and produces the leaf rosette the first year. It blooms and goes to seed, producing the burrs the second year, then dies.
These burrs can often be found in huge balls, wrapped up in my dog's fur, especially his tail and rear. It's uncomfortable for him, poor fellow! For this reason I have tried very hard to iradicate it, to no avail! I had more first year burdock this year than ever before!
Next year there will be a difference! I have done some research on the burdock plant this year and learned a few helpful things. Not helpful in getting rid of it, but information to help me appreciate it more.
Did you know that "Greater Burdock", which is what I have growing all over, is edible? It is also called "edible burdock or Lappa burdock". The roots are highly prized and sought after by other cultures and used to prepare many dishes in Asia and the Mediterranean.
What I found most intersting is that the budock plant is closely related to the artichoke. The young, tender flower stalks, apparently, taste like artichokes.
So, next year, I'll be hunting those flower stalks again, but with a different purpose in mind. Image that, we'll be eating burdock and it will probably be delicious! I don't think I will tell hubby what it is until after we have eaten it. He trusts me. He knows I am not going to feed him something that he cannot eat.
Do any of you eat burdock? Do the young flower stalks taste like artichoke?
I have even put some seeds on my farm store! I am amazed at the idea that someone would deliberately plant it, but after some thought I guess it's not so far fetched. If it's really is that good, why not plant it? Just make sure you eat all the flower stalks before they make burrs and bury themselves in your dog's fur!
I can tell you right now that it can't possibly be more prolific and invasive than some other things I have growing here on purpose. I will have to post a picture of my now-chickenless chicken pen, covered like a jungle with curly dock and it's not really that invasive. At least it doesn't stick to my dog's fur! (I fed those to the chickens last year.) There is also a giant pumpkin growing in there and in the old chicken manure, it's HUGE!
Burdock could be pretty and interesting in a perennial bed, I suppose, if one can release one's temptation to yell and demolish the THING on site!
So, a new discovery and a surprising one too! Another step in becoming a little more self sufficient!
Posted by Providence Acres Farm at 4:45 PM