Wasabi has rounder leaves and would never come up by itself (in my experience, it is a diva and wants breakfast in bed).
I have this in my garden too, I always think of it as false comfrey because that is what i hope it is. I think the name in English is dock, hopefully someone else can confirm.
Its definitely not any kind of dock I'm familiar with. We have lots of dock around too.
Horse radish is a good guess! I first noticed the root over the winter as something to keep an eye on and I am starting to suspect that this area was gardened in the past because I also found a lavender bush amongst the mint.
I will definitely give it a taste and report back. When would one harvest horseradish?
That is Horseradish scratch and sniff either the leaves or root will confirm it. Dock comes up in basil around a central stem, horse radish in random clusters from the roots. One of my favorite perennials a brassica family with roots, leaves and edible flowers.
Kelly Osborn wrote:That is Horseradish scratch and sniff either the leaves or root will confirm it. Dock comes up in basil around a central stem, horse radish in random clusters from the roots. One of my favorite perennials a brassica family with roots, leaves and edible flowers.
Awesome Kelly, thanks for the affirmative, the more I've looked at it the more convinced I was that it was something. I'll do the scratch and sniff test soon. When are the roots typically harvested? Fall I assume?
Most farms grow horseradish for three years then harvest during the fall. I harvest when I need some. The roots in my clay soil do not get as large but they are awesome one little root ground up is a lot of flavor and sinus clearing.
During tomato season I like to ferment my own ketchup with horseradish, ie cocktail sauce, so that is usually when I harvest. I also love to ferment my horseradish for the season. Right now I have a jar of garlic scapes fermenting on the counter top and a little left over in the fridge from last year after it is done I will do a quart of horse radish.
I will caution you it is very prolific plant and will take over a garden bed.
One of your pictures also showed flowers and since horseradish is in the Brassicaceae - brassica/mustard/cruciferae family it will have 4 petals, 4 sepals, 6 stamen (2 shorter than the others), 1 pistil like all in the family. For example look at any mustard, radish, broccoli, cabbage flower they all are in the same type flowers. For wild foragers out there this is one family you need to recognize. The entire plant of this family are technically edible from roots to flowers, some are just not very palatable. Cabbage roots for example are edible just too tough and woody to eat.
Yes, correct ph, correct zone, correct water, multiple years to get a crop. I have tried but failed miserably to get it to work in my house. There are commercial greenhouses that have now figured it out though and at ~$90 per pound it would be nice to figure out how to grow it for the fancier restaurants in the area. Horseradish no longer produces viable seed but I have gotten Wasabi seed up but I would not be surprised if you need a root section of Wasabi for a quality crop.
Horseradish and Wasabi are in the same family so I just grow horseradish. Most of the Wasabi in the typical restaurant is just horseradish with a little food coloring and other mustards combinded.
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