The Jerusalem Artichokes (Sun chokes) have been in bloom the last couple weeks. This time of year I cut the blooms off for two reasons. I have read that when you remove the flowers, they will put more resources into making larger tubers. I don’t know if this is true, but I remove the flowers anyway because my landlord isn’t real keen on me having sun chokes anyway.
This plant is an example of a species that has much to offer in the form of nutrition. Sadly it has been labelled A WEED in the eyes of industrial agriculture. These plants will take over an area, which I view as a good thing if you are interested in growing them for food. Just beware, if you are going to plant Sun chokes put them in a spot where they can be for the foreseeable future. Your odds of getting them all at the end of the season are pretty slim.
I purchased tubers to get my patch started, but have since found numerous locations around here where they grow wild. This time of year as you are out and about look for these yellow flowers on top of a plant that is 4-10 feet tall. Bees will be visiting them if there is a hive nearby. You may just find a food source as well as a lead on a trapping location for 2014!
Any other ideas on where you may find bee activity this fall?
Let me know.