Yesterday I asked you what the tuber was in the photo below. Dawn was closest saying an Oca which is what I thought it was when I first saw it. It's a Mashua and related to nasturtiums, coming from the Andes and is a crop that's been grown for 1000's of years.
It seems to be a veg that splits opinion and it's not particularly loved. One of the reasons for this is it's reported effects as a antiaphrodisia and reduction of the male libido! No research has been done on this other than on rats from what I can see on the web and even then you need to eat large quantities of this to have an effect.
The second negative for it will reduce the chances of that anyway, as it's not even meant to taste that nice! I've read that some people think it has an amazing flavour but most just don't think it tastes very nice!
Why am I growing it then? (This is what my brother said to me when I told him about the veg this morning. )
Well first off I love growing different things and I might enjoy the taste. It's also meant to yield well on poor soil making it a good backup crop and one for hard times.
It looks really pretty on all the photos I've seen of it growing, produces loads of flowers and makes quite a feature in the garden when trained to climb up something (my old tin shed maybe?).
And finally in Colombia it's grown with potatoes as a companion plant to repel pests in the potato fields so it might be good to grow it along side other crops or up the fence around my garden as a natural barrier.
Here are a couple of links with more information:
What do you think? Would you grow it to see what it's like?