john muckleroy jr wrote:I know "from reading" that Jerusalem Artichokes can be harvested anytime of the year and just left in the ground.Are there any other root crops like that?
I grow lots of JAs, but it hasn't been my experience that you can harvest them any time of year. I can only harvest fall and early winter here. I do just leave a lot of them in the ground so that try will come back the next year.
I don't know of any root crop that work as you describe, but that may be due to my climate.
This may be old news to you and many other seasoned growies but I just found out this year that you can get 4 or so harvests from lettuce just by leaving several inches of core and lower leaves intact (not taking the whole head).
I know you specifically asked for "root crop" an I don't think lettuce is that, sorry - but thought it might be valuable info for you to consider
It just keeps regrowing, need to give it some time to regenerate but it does. Quality will start to diminish and after 4 cuts the farm I'm at had us take them out...I think it still tasted fine and makes me wonder how many other plants can produce more/longer if only partially harvested.
Depending on if your climate can grow Elephant garlic, that may be an option for almost year round harvests. In zone 8, it grows like a perennial, and just keeps dividing like bulbs taking over a bed. You can harvest mature bulbs in the late summer season during optimal harvest time, and though its not recomended, I've even harvest bulbs for storing any time they are dormant during the dry: they just don't have the paper covering if they set to long in the beds. Once they resprout in the moist part of fall, you can use them like a leek, all the way until they start to put up their flower scapes; then you can harvest garlic scapes until they get to developed. Once the blooms open up, I think the flowers are also edible, and make a colorful addition to salads. I would recomend doing your own due diligence though, before going ahead with eating the fully developed blossom. Then you can also harvest just the tender green leaves to use like a green onion. All together, that makes for just about year round harvest of Elephant garlic or Elephant garlic products.
Also don't forget things like garlic scape pesto store well vacuum sealed in the freezer, as does many herbs simply pureed freash in some olive oil, then vacuum sealed before freezing. This method of storage gives you the tast of garden fresh herbs year round, and it's very convenient for use if you have a vacuum sealer.