|The taro removed from the bulkhead garden. |
Removing invasives, sooner rather than later
Just this last April, we redid this weird bulkhead space to fix a slumping problem
. At the time, I thought I'd removed all the taro roots and corms (Colocasia esculenta
) and the soil we used to fill in the space was from another area of the property with no taros. So in just these few months, they've rebounded. I pulled this whole bouquet from this space which is approximately 4' x 4'. I'll have to check for new growth more often. I also pulled out some native elderberry (Sambucus nigra subsp. canadensis
) volunteers, which are small trees.
Note on taro (aka dasheen):
it was brought from Africa by slaves and then again in 1910 by the US Dept. of Agriculture as a potato substitute for the south. Big mistake. Several people suggested that we include it as a crop in "Organic Methods for Vegetable Gardening in Florida
," but I refused. If it's invasive, we should not be encouraging people to grow it. Another interesting feature of this plant as a crop, is that every part contains calcium oxalate crystals, which can irritate your mouth and other tissues. To prepare the corms to eat, you have to boil it in at least three waters and then grind it to a powder.