Author Topic: Any experience with cyperus esculentus?  (Read 330 times)

Greenie DeS

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Any experience with cyperus esculentus?
« on: 2022-02-09, 09:07:02 AM »
I've been sent a couple varieties of chufa/cyperus esculentus tubers, also known as "tiger nuts". It sounds like they may actually grow here in my short season, need to be dug and replanted every year, and may be a good hog or bird self-harvest crop. They're also used in Spain as food?

I'm curious if anyone has any experience with their eating quality, ease of harvest, and variability among varieties.

Here's a write-up by Will Bonsall and one by tourne-sol farm.

https://www.mofga.org/resources/vegetables/chufa/

https://goingtoseed.wordpress.com/2010/11/17/chufa-nuts/

B. Copping

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Re: Any experience with cyperus esculentus?
« Reply #1 on: 2022-02-13, 08:06:36 PM »
I haven’t been able to do much gardening the past two years.
I’ve grown chufa once. (So far)
My garden plot has a lot of adjacent grass, so the grubs that eat grass roots were very fond of the chufa.
The next time I grow some, I plan on growing them in large pots.

My impression from eating them in the garden is that they are pleasantly bland with a nice crunch.
I haven’t eaten them in a dry state, or in the drink mentioned in the Tournesol article.

Tourne-sol is near Montréal, so figure 150 frost free days.
If you can manage tomatoes, I think you will be okay with the chufa.

Greenie DeS

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Re: Any experience with cyperus esculentus?
« Reply #2 on: 2022-02-15, 02:36:45 PM »
That does sound tasty. Kind of jicama or fresh water chestnut-like?

Hm. I'm about 2/3 of that season, and much cooler. I'm in the process of trying to source and breed tomatoes because they don't normally do well here.

Pots make sense for something small that needs to be dug up, at least for the test year.

We'll see!

Jeremy Weiss

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Re: Any experience with cyperus esculentus?
« Reply #3 on: 2022-02-15, 06:33:11 PM »
I grew them once. The real problem with them (and why they are not  more popular) is that they are a PAIN to dig up. Compared to most tuber crops, which tend to have a more or less set level for where the tubers form with respect to the plant, tiger nuts don't. Tubers can form at ANY level below ground, and the plant can develops VERY long, fine roots before it tubers. That means that, when you harvest, you basically have to be prepared to dig down a GREAT DEAL if you want to get all (or even most) of the tubers. It also means that, once the plant plot is well established, it's more or less impossible to GET RID OF THEM ever again, since you are probably going to miss a lot of tubers, and they will grow back from them.

As for varieties. Jibrilenteprises (the Ghanaian seller on Etsy I use to get a lot of my things like sword beans) carries a black skinned one. That's the only variant I know.

https://www.etsy.com/listing/1041257548/black-tiger-nutscyperus-esculentus-300g?click_key=477d0856d84b0997398171832484ad7a85da0403%3A1041257548&click_sum=0d9f47e3&ga_search_query=tiger%2Bnut&ref=shop_items_search_2&frs=1&crt=1