Friday

Asian Water Chestnut Eleocharis dulcis


Off we go, starting our own water chestnuts again. In case you ever had them in stir fry, the fresh bulbs are 100 times better than the canned. Delicious. Plus, I know in what water they are growing  (clean water) ;)
Eleocharis dulcis is tropical Asian aquatic sedge having an edible corm and cylindrical leaves. The succulent corm of this plant ist used in Asian cooking. This is NOT to be confused with the aquatic invasive Asian water chestnut (Trapa natans)
Chinese water chestnuts (Eleocharis dulcis) and European water chestnuts (Trapa natans) are two unrelated water plants that carry the same name. The Chinese water chestnut resembles a small  muddy tulip bulb and is sweet and crunchy; the European water chestnut  resembles a tiny horned bull’s head and is quite starchy. Americans are  most familiar with the Chinese water chestnut. Chinese  water chestnuts grow underwater in mud, have brown or black scale-like  leaves, and are round, though somewhat flattened. They are the roots of an aquatic plant that grows in freshwater ponds, marshes, lakes, and  slow-moving rivers and streams in Japan, Taiwan, China, Thailand, and  Australia. They are difficult to harvest, explaining their generally  high price. Chinese water chestnuts have mildly sweet, crisp, white  flesh and are excellent raw on skewers with dip/

The European water chestnut or water caltrop has seed capsules with  four spikes and is named after the caltrop, a vicious medieval weapon  with four iron points. This hard-shelled ebony black fruit has two  prominent, down curved horns resembling a bull’s head and a woody,  sculptured surface that looks like a face or a bat. It grows abundantly  in Indonesia, Southeast Asia, southern China, Japan, Italy, and tropical  America. Its Chinese name, ling ko, means “spiritual horn.”

Storage: Store water chestnuts, unwashed and unpeeled, in a loosely closed paper or plastic bag in the refrigerator crisper for up to 2 weeks. Keep water caltrops in a cool, dry place.

To Grow: Easy to grow in a tub filled with dirt about 4" high . Water to 2" above  soil level. Consider appropriate spacing as each corm produces quickly  about 8-10 new corms. The closer they sit the harder it is to separate  them.

To Buy: 
  1. Tricker Aquatics: Water Chestnuts 1 Bulb $6.50
  2. COTW Rare Seeds: Fresh Asian Water Chestnuts 5 Bulbs $7.50 

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1 comment:

Robert Lehmert said...

Hi today is February 16, 2016. I can't tell how old your post is -- but I am interested in growing water chestnuts hydroponically for sale in our farmer's market. Are you able to see me a few pounds of cormes to get started? Thanks --
Robert