All this before Breakfast!

Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9bSeptember 11, 2013

I have been interested in growing things that are drought tolerant and edible for quite some time.

I noticed a weed like plant, not planted by me, that looked strangely like Amaranthus. I've watched it grow for a month, and am convinced that I Identified it correctly. So then I googled Society Garlic, which is everywhere here, and sure enough, it's edible! I recently planted Miracle Trees as a hedge, and they are 100% edible.

Before breakfast, I checked on the Miracle Tree seedlings, had a delicious bite of one leaf, threw caution to the wind, broke off a new leaf of what I think is Amaranth, and wow! Amazingly delicious! Then I strolled over and had a taste of a Society Garlic flower. Wow! So, then I consumed a leaf which was VERY garlicky and peppery.

I guess my Amaranth weed is truly Amaranth. I'm not dead yet! LOL! But my goal is to come up with some recipes using all three! If you have some, please share!

Suzi

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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

What's a "miracle tree"?

    Bookmark   September 11, 2013 at 4:17PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

They are fast growers! Like super fast, and they must be contained!

Their true name is Moringa Oleifera AKA Miracle or Horseradish Tree.

The entire tree can be eaten, cut, and it will grow back, cut back and enjoy, cut back again and again., At some point you can eat the blossoms and the string beans (full of nutrients) that follow. It has more nutrients than most edibles!

I love that it is drought tolerant and thrives in bad sandy soil!

You live in the zone to grow it. We have it as a hedge, and the raw baby leaves taste really good! The old tough ones need cooking. I intend to keep mine in check by cutting the branches and top in half often.

I started mine as seeds from Ebay. I planted 9 and 6 are now baby seedlings! In two weeks they are 6" tall. I expect they will grow taller faster, but winter is coming, so they may slow down. In spring, they will rock!

Suzi

Here is a link that might be useful: Moringa, More than you can handle

This post was edited by desertdance on Wed, Sep 11, 13 at 18:17

    Bookmark   September 11, 2013 at 6:01PM
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calistoga_al ca 15 usda 9

The local deer are able to tell what is poison to them and they refrain from eating it. Unfortunately humans are not so blessed, so I am very cautious about eating my garden plants. Al

    Bookmark   September 12, 2013 at 11:39AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Thanks for the link. I think I'll stick with oranges.

Hopefully Moringa is not invasive. California has enough invaders already.

Speaking of knowing what you are eating, the death of Chris McCandless ("Into The Wild") has apparently been solved.

Here is a link that might be useful: Mystery solved

    Bookmark   September 12, 2013 at 6:50PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

Just thought I'd pop in to let you know I'm still alive! Moringa can be invasive but only by seeds. The seeds can be ground into flour or pressed to get the oil out or toasted like peanuts, so I'm going to keep all my seeds and not let one drift over to a neighbor's yard. Although they have no problem letting their seedlings drift over to mine......

My accidental Amaranth is truly an Amaranth, and those have been eaten for thousands of years! I do have seeds for a few varieties and will plant them in spring. I'm pretty sure this is a seed that drifted from a neighbor's planting.

Society Garlic to me is more of a seasoning AKA herb.

Rock on!

Suzi

    Bookmark   September 12, 2013 at 10:12PM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

I love amaranth. I plant the Hopi Red Dye variety and the long green one.

    Bookmark   September 15, 2013 at 1:19AM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance Zone 9b

Here is your update: After eating a leaf or two per day, of what I thought was Amaranth, I made a delicious dinner with sautee'd spinach like stuff. I even included garlic. Yummm!

But after dinner, I had a hard time seeing my computer screen. So I cleaned my glasses. That didn't work. Then I decided to go to the girl's room. Had a hard time getting there. Double vision, plus shaky legs. Hubby was in the same condition. No upset stomach ever.

I retired to bed, and then the muscle twiches and cramps began. I couldn't sleep. Couldn't see straight. Had to hang on to a wall to go anywhere.

Hubby called 911, and we spent the night at emergency hooked up to IV's to flush out the neuro-toxins.

We are fine now, and I now know what the weed is. It's called Indian Tobacco. Indians smoked it for hundreds of years. It's got nicotine. It's medicinal in small amounts, but toxic when you start with a huge pile and saute it down to a cup or so.

It no longer lives in our yard (how could something so delicious be so toxic?). True Amaranth will be sowed in spring! We are all recovered and back to life as usual!

Suzi

    Bookmark   October 5, 2013 at 4:43PM
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