Jarilla heterophylla
Uses: Culinary Duration: Perennial (hardy in zones 11+)
When to Sow: Anytime Ease of Germination: Easy
(Jarilla) Fascinating wild food plant found only in central Mexico. Strangely, it is one of the closest living relatives to papaya (Carica papaya) but it looks completely different. It is a small trailing seasonal plant that emerges from an edible and tasty root when the spring rains return to Central Mexico. The plant quickly grows to a thin vine about 1-2 feet long and produces flowers followed by small strange-looking fruits. The fruits persist after the vine dies back in the heat of the summer. They can be eaten unripe or green like little cucumbers or they can be eaten when they turn a burnished red or yellow as they ripen. They have a unique aroma when ripe and are eaten by cutting in half and scooping out the flesh. The ripe fruits are also used to flavor fruit juices. As a bonus the edible root can be cooked and eaten like a potato. This plant probably can be grown easily in a pot, or it can be grown outside in warm dry areas. The plant seems well suited for pot cultivation in temperate areas because in its native habitat it is a tuber-forming perennial that grows actively for only about three months a year. Seeds should age before planting as brand new seeds do not germinate well. A plant for the serious gardener. Very rare!
S9567 SeedZoo(tm) Seeds 5 seeds $6.25/pkt
Currency: United States Dollar

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