Roots grow 1–6" deep and have periodic swellings (the groundnuts) that range from marble size to larger than a golf ball. These edible tubers can be harvested any time of year. Delicious, high in starch, and contain three times the protein of a potato! Peel them first, then eat them boiled, roasted, baked, mashed, sliced, diced, puréed or even made into chips. Not recommended raw.
Will keep a month or more in the fridge or root cellar, or dry them and they keep forever. An essential food for Native Americans for hundreds of years; also essential to the survival of the first European settlers in New England.
Small orchid-like maroon, pink and violet flowers appear in late August in central Maine followed by 2-4" bean pods. Prefers moist sandy soil. Full to partial sun. Keep it out of your garden as it will spread. Can be vigorous and requires a trellis of some sort. Native to river banks and flood plains, southern Canada, eastern and midwestern U.S. Grown by Carmen Gonzales in Starks. Z3. Maine Grown. (tubers)
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