December 27, 2020 Saturday
Burdock (Arctium tomentosum)
In the beginning,(May 1, 2020) , this land is full of burdock. All the burs (old flowers) were tall, the stick to Kyles shirt, and he is 6 ft 4 in height. I find the plant amazing because they manage to thrive here all these years. As we can recall, the last farmers in this land were here in the 1950s and record never showed any farm operated here. Whoever has rented the old yellow house, they live here and just enjoyed the fallow fields.
Burdock grows abundantly and never harvested. The area where the "foodbank garden" and "childrens garden" is full of them. I am excited for so many food source. The leaves are huge, these leaves remind me of Rhubarb. Even Kyle mentioned it that it looks like Rhubarb, he found these plants abundantly growing near the fallen willow tree. I went and scouted the area, and notice that it was clumps of burdock. I know the long taproot will be huge, and I saved it for later use.
I started saving the seeds as well, its not difficult to save them because the burr with stick to your shirts, or your shoes to annoy you. So in winter, I walk the fields and save the seeds.
In Japan, burdock has traditionally been an important source for food and medicine. Called “poor-man's potatoes,” it’s eaten as a vegetable called gobō. It was brought to Japan from China 1,000 or so years ago as a medicinal plant, but it didn’t become popular in the Japanese diet until the Edo period. Japanese breeders worked to domesticate burdock, and it is now considered a delicacy.
Sow in early spring or late fall, soaking the seeds before sowing. Plant ¼ inch deep, 12 inches apart, or grow in tall wooden boxes that allow the long root to develop.
It produces a large rosette of leaves and a large edible taproot in the first year. Burdock flowers the second year; it may become invasive.
Note: Dec 25, 2020, Friday around 6 degrees C . It was a green christmas, I visited the farm and went to a walk with Kieren and Karlina. It was actually warm and it was nice.