Last year was our first time planting African Potato Mint. I started with one plant purchased from GreenDreams nursery on the west coast of Florida. I had seen their videos about how cool this plant was. An easy to grow ground cover that has edible tubers like small potatoes was right up my alley for a new addition to The Serene Forest.
After planting it in the spring, the wait was on. By summer, the plant had sprawled out nicely into a 4x4 foot raised bed. The leaves have a nice aroma similar to mint. They leaves can be used in the kitchen, but I have not done so yet. We so much peppermint and spearmint that I haven't needed to.
By the end of summer and early fall, flowers appeared and attracted lots of bees. What a great surprise. Bringing in pollinators means this ground cover can compliment other cross-pollinating plants well.
I first noticed tubers bulging at the base of the plant around the beginning of December. But, they were very much attached to the plant and very small in size. A quick google search pointed to it still being too early to harvest. The recommendation was to wait for the above ground growth to die before digging through the earth for tubers. So that's what I did.
As we entered the new year, I went back to check on our African Potato Mint. Much of the above ground growth was dead. A quick comb of the earth with my fingers revealed TONS of small edible tubers. I harvested a handful and went to the kitchen to see what they taste like.
After a week, of basically forgetting about them, I went back and found even more tubers that were very large in size. The larger tubers seem to be deeper than the small nickel sized tubers we found originally.
If you want to see how we cooked these, check out our Gardening Forum thread "Foodscape Recipes" by CLICKING HERE