Posted on

Skirret harvesting in the sun

Three year old skirret plants

Skirret harvesting…It’s early March and we have been busy lifting some of our mature skirret plants. We left these to grow for three years undisturbed as an experiment to see what size roots would develop. The plants have produced quite sizeable clusters of good sized eating roots. The ones you can see in the images below had a nice snap to them and a sweet crunchy taste. The plants produced some very healthy looking offsets too. Offsets are the growing tips that cluster and naturally multiply around the top of the crown. These can be pinched off with a little bit of root attached and popped into a pot of compost to develop before being planted out in their final position. You can propagate and increase your stock very rapidly this way and offsets grow into mature plants in a short space of time.

Our next plan is to attempt some long term skirret breeding, trialling lots of plants grown from different seed sources to see which produce the largest eating roots and also, most importantly which have roots without a woody core.

 

Skirret three year old plants
Harvested in March 2017, after three years, skirret with some good eating roots. Left to develop undisturbed, these skirret plants have matured nicely. You can see the offsets at the top which can be pinched off to propagate new plants.
Skirret plant with offsets
Lifted in early March, you can see the clusters of offsets at the top of the root crown. Three year old plants with a mass of sweet tasting roots.
Skirret Offsets
Skirret offsets which have been divided from a mature skirret plant. These offsets can be potted up and left to develop before planting out. Each one produces a new skirret plant. Using offsets is a very quick and easy way to propagate skirret plants.
skirret offsets
Skirret offsets with tiny white roots ready for potting up.