Table of Contents

Title: Vegetarian
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00087399/00395
 Material Information
Title: Vegetarian
Series Title: Vegetarian
Physical Description: Serial
Creator: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publisher: Horticultural Sciences Department, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Publication Date: March 1976
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Bibliographic ID: UF00087399
Volume ID: VID00395
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.


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-- VEGETARIAN Newsletter

March 9, 1976

Prepared by Extension Vegetable Crops Specialists

J. F. Kelly

S. R. Kostewicz
Assistant Professor

James Montelaro

R. K. Showalter

J. M. Stephens
Associate Professor

G. A. Marlowe, Jr.


FROM: Stephen R. Kostewicz, Extension Vegetable Specialist




A. Availability of Production Guides



Cucumber Production Update for 1976 Season
Soil Preparation and Vegetables
Soluble Salt Build-Up in Seep Irrigated Soils of Mulched


Timely Gardening Topics
Know Your Vegetables Dasheen

NOTE: Anyone

is free to use the information in this newsletter.
give credit to the authors.

Whenever possible,






A. Availability of Production Guides

We have received several requests to list the status of the extension vegetable
publications. A report in the April Vegetarian is scheduled to forward that informa-

The "Squash Production Guide" (103C) has been reprinted and is available in
limited quantities. The circulars "Chemical Weed Control for Florida Vegetable Crops"
(196D) and "Vegetable Variety Trial Results in Florida for 1972-73-74 and Recommended
Varieties" (S-234) are currently being reprinted and will be available in the near

In conjunction with the cucumber production update given in this newsletter, we
have a department mimeo entitled "Growing Pickling Cucumbers in Florida" (Mimeo Report
75-3) which is available in limited quantities to interested agents.
(Kostewicz, Montelaro)


A. Cucumber Production Update for 1976 Season

(1) Land Selection Cucumbers are very susceptible to nematode injury. Growers
should not plant cukes following crops like okra, squash, cantaloupes and others which,
like cukes, tend to build-up high populations of nematodes. Land that is suspected of
being heavily infested with nematodes should be fumigated as suggested under "nematode

(2) Varieties There are new hybrid and open-pollinated cucumber varieties being
made available to growers each year. It is almost impossible for our Research Centers
to test every one adequately. For that reason, the list of varieties suggested below is
presented as a guide and is not meant to exclude others that may be productive. Any new
variety should be planted in limited trials for one or more seasons before dropping the
proven standard varieties.


Ashley Resistant to downy mildew. Good yields. Fruits generally shorter
and darker green than Marketer.

Poinsett Ashley type--uniform, smooth well-rounded ends with even dark
green color. Early set may be short. Heavy yields with resistance to anthracnose,
angular leaf spot, downy and powdery mildew.

Cherokee A gynoecious hybrid with resistance to downy and powdery mildew,
anthracnose, scab and mosaic. Early bearing and productive. Requires a pollinator to
be planted with it.

Gemini Similar to Cherokee.

Other Varieties Marketer, Crackerlee.

Ohio MR-17 Black-spined, mosaic resistant, vigorous, productive variety.
Fruit dark green, wanted, blocky, tapered. Excellent pickling quality.


SMR-18 Scab and mosaic resistant, warted, medium-green fruit. Vines
vigorous and productive. Similar to MR-17.

SMR-58 Similar to SMR-18 in disease resistance and fruit characteristics
except shorter.

Other Varieties

Once-over harvest
Southern Cross
Triple Cross

Multiple harvest

(3) Liming and pH

(a) Take a soil sample as soon as the land has been selected. Land not
in cultivation with a pH of 5.7 to 5.8 may show a 0.5 to 1.0 pH unit drop when it is put
into cultivation and adequately fertilized. We recommend a ratio of calcium/magnesium
of 5:1. Choose dolomite or high calcic limestone based on soil test information. A pH
of 6.0 to 6.5 is recommended for cucumbers.

If pH is sufficiently high and magnesium is low, add two units of
MgO in the basic application of fertilizer.

(b) Apply lime two to three months in advance, if possible, and mix
thoroughly with the soil. In an emergency, lime can be applied with benefits up to one
day before seeding.

(4) Seed Treatment All seed should be treated with the standard vine-seed treat-
ment to control mice and damp-off.

(5) Nematode Control Cucumbers are subject to severe attacks from nematodes.
Use land that has been out of cultivation for several years or fumigate with one of the
approved soil fumigants. Check the label for crop approval and rates. Following are
suggested for fumigation of soil for cukes.

Overall Row
Fl oz/chisel Fl oz/chisel
per 1000 per 1000
Nematicide Gal/Acre linear ft Gal/Acre linear ft
D-D 20-25 59-73 8-10 72-90
Dowfume W-85 4.5-6.0 13-18 1.5-2.0 13-18
Soilborm 85
Fumazone 86
Nemagon 12.1 1.5-2.0 4.4-5.9 .75-1.0 6.6-8.8
Oxy BBC 12
Nemagon 8.6 2.1-2.8 6.2-8.2 1.0-1.4 8.8-12.3
Telone II 12-15 35-44 4.5-6.0 35-44

(6) Fertilization

(a) Basic (initial) Fertilizer Application


1. Amount Use about 1,500 lbs. of 6-8-8 in general for irrigated
soil. Reduce by 25% on unirrigated soil. Adjust amount up or down depending on soil
tests for phosphorus and potassium and use of cover crops.

2. Placement and Timing To avoid fertilizer burn, it is suggested
that about one-half of 1,500 lbs. of 6-8-8 be broadcast and disked in one week before
seeding. The balance can be applied at seeding in two bands 3 inches to each side of
-the seed drill and about 2 inches deep or applied broadcast before crop emergence to
shoulders of bed and worked into soil ahead of roots.

3. Sources of Fertilizer Nutrients

a. Organics are not necessarily needed, but can be used to
an advantage in some cases. Organic nitrogen may be considered as partial insurance
against temporary nitrogen deficiency during periods of heavy rains. Urea nitrogen
reacts more like inorganic than organic nitrogen in the soil.

b. Be sure to include one to two units of nitrate-nitrogen in
the regular fertilizer to be used at planting or to be split as suggested above.

c. Check phosphorus sources. Heavily ammoniated superphosphate
may not supply adequate phosphorus. Suggestion: Obtain a fertilizer that contains some
phosphorus from superphosphate or triple superphosphate in addition to that supplied
by ammoniated superphosphate. The latter (ammoniated superphosphate) should be ammoniated
only to the extent of 3 to 4% instead of 7% or above.

(b) Micronutrients

1. Some of the micronutrients as zinc, manganese and copper will be
supplied, in part, by the fungicides used for disease control. This will not supply
adequate amounts of these materials; therefore, the minimum amounts recommended below
should be used in the basic fertilizer.
2. In the absence of previous history and experience on sandy soils,
a "shotgun" approach can be used. A general guide for adequate micronutrients is the
addition of 0.3% MnO, 0.2% CuO, 0.5% Fe203, 0.2% ZnO, and 0.2% B203 with the fertilizer.
These can be obtained from mixtures of oxides and sulfates, fritted materials or chelates.

(c) Variations in this Program

1. When adequate soil testing shows high level of an element, reduce
the amount of that element accordingly.

(d) Sidedressings

1. Depending on amount and intensity of rainfall, make one or more
applications of 150 to 300 Ibs. of (1) 10-10-10, (2) 15-0-14 or (3) 100 to 200 lbs. of
23-0-22 or (4) alternate ammonium nitrate (NH4NO3) and potassium nitrate (KNO3).
2. At least 50% of nitrogen in mixed goods for sidedressings should
be in nitrate form.

(e) Leaf Feeding with Major Elements

1. No specific advantages have been found from leaf feeding with the
major elements over a good fertilization program as outlined above. Micronutrients may
well be supplied to the foliage.


(f) Liquid Fertilizers

1. The newer liquid fertilizers are gaining in popularity due to
ease of handling and in some cases lower costs. Preliminary research indicates they
may be used safely. Results on some crops and in some seasons have varied. Use on a
limited basis in the beginning.

(7) Irrigation

(a) High levels of fertilization make timely
Irrigate before plants begin to wilt in dry weather.
to maintain soil at near field capacity can make the

irrigation extremely impor-
Growers with adequate irri-
higher rates of fertilization

(8) Weed Control

(a) None
excellent for the job.
used. Suggestion: Use

of the herbicides approved for use on cucumbers can be considered
Prefar, Vegiben 2E, Alanap and Dacthal are approved and can be
on a limited acreage for trial purposes the first time.

(9) Pollination

for good
of hives

(a) Need for honeybees The cucurbits must have bees working the flowers
pollination. Use one or more hives of bees for every five acres. Distribution
should be such that bees do not have to travel long distances to work flowers.

(b) Insecticide use Bees work actively in warm weather until mid to late
afternoon. Apply insecticides in very late afternoon to reduce injury to bees.

(10) Disease Control

Angular Leaf Spot Use only disease-free seed. Weekly applications of
copper sprays (3 pounds of 48-53% metallic copper per 100 gal./A) help to control spread
of the disease in the field. Copper will not give satisfactory control of powdery mildew
and thus is not a substitute for other materials. Repeated copper applications may cause
yellowing of leaf margins and possibly reduction of yields. No time limitation when used
as suggested.
Min. Days
Disease Spray To Harvest
Anthracnose, Zineb 75%, 1 lb. plus 5
Downy Mildew, and Maneb 80%, 3/4 lb., or 5
Gummy Stem Blight Manzate 200 80%, 1 1/2-3 Ibs., or 5
Dithane M-45 80%, 1 1/2-3 Ibs., or 5
Bravo W75, 1 1/2-2 Ibs., or NTL
Benlate, 1/4-1/2 Ibs./A NTL
(Benlate does not control
downy mildew.)
Powdery Mildew Karathane 25%, 6-8 oz., or 7
Bravo W75, 1 1/2-2 Ibs., or NTL
Benlate, 1/4-1/2 lb./A NTL
Cucumber Scab Bravo W75, 1 1/2-2 Ibs., or NTL
Manzate 200 80%, 1 1/2-3 Ibs., or 5
Dithane M-45 80%, 1 1/2-3 Ibs./A 5



Anthracnose, Downy Mildew and Gummy Stem Blight Downy mildew is serious
in all parts of the state during warm, damp weather. Spray every four to seven days,
beginning before runners start, if necessary. In seasons of light infection, applica-
tions may be delayed until runners form and intervals may be longer.

There are several varieties of cucumbers that are resistant to downy
mildew but fungicides should be used to prevent other diseases.

Powdery Mildew The fungicides used for downy mildew give some control of
powdery mildew, but most will not give sufficient control. Karathane, Bravo and benomyl
are effective. If powdery mildew is a persistent problem, use one of these materials
on a preventive basis, i.e., on a regular schedule (every seven to fourteen days) before
the disease appears.

During cold weather, sulfur may be used on cucumbers (no more than 2 pounds)
two or three times to control powdery mildew.

Viruses (Mosaic) Most mosaic symptoms in this crop are caused by aphid-
transmitted viruses that occur naturally in wild hosts. Elimination of weeds around
the field before planting will help greatly in reducing losses from virus diseases.

(11) Insect Control

Insecticides and Amounts Min. Days
Insect Formulations Per Acre To Harvest
Leaf Miners Diazinon 4E 1-1 1/2 pt. 7
Parathion 4E 1/2 pt. 15
Azinphosmethyl (Guthion) 2E 1 qt. 1
Aphids Parathion 4E 1/2 pt. 15
Mevinphos (Phosdrin) 2E 1 pt. 1
Endosulfan (Thiodan) 2E 1 qt. NTL
Cucumber Beetles, Lindane 25% WP 1 lb. 1
Melonworm, Parathion 4E 1/2 pt. 15
Pickleworm, and Mevinphos (Phosdrin) 2E 1 pt. 1
Squashbug Carbaryl (Sevin) 80% WP 1 1/4 lbs. NTL
Endosulfan (Thiodan) 2E 2 qts. NTL
Methomyl (Lannate & Nudrin) SP 1 lb. 3
Wireworms Apply one of the insecticides labeled for cukes prior to
planting broadcast and disked into the soil.
Cutworms and Any of the insecticides approved for cutworm and mole
Mole Crickets cricket control in cucumber crops can be applied broadcast
over the bed or as baits. Insecticides normally used on cuke
plants for control of other insects will help control cutwonrs
and mole crickets, also.

(12) Full-Bed

Plastic Mulch Culture

Cucumber is a crop that can be grown on full-bed plastic mulch. It makes
an excellent second crop following fall or winter mulch-grown tomatoes, peppers, eggplant,
etc., in central and south Florida.

Anyone interested in producing cucumbers under full-bed plastic mulch
culture should refer to "Squash Production Guide", University of Florida, Extension
Circular 103C, for instruction of procedures to follow. Fertilizer recommendations given
in the squash guide may be used for cucumbers, also.


B. Soil Preparation and Vegetables

Correct soil preparation is one step to success with other cultural practices
that follow in vegetable production. The number of steps involved prior to planting
will vary according to the crop grown, area of the state (primarily soil type), water
management practices, size of the operation and sophistication of the grower's program
and operation. Basically, however, there are some points which are found in all programs
and only differ in technique and/or equipment used to accomplish them.

The soil preparation practices involve two basic aims or ideas on what is to be
attempted (1) to thoroughly and uniformly work the soil to an appropriate depth (plowing),
and (2) to subsequently work the roughly prepared soil into a more suitable state into
which vegetables can be seeded or transplanted. Upon these basic operations, the pro-
duction program is built and can have an effect on the success or failure of various
production inputs.

Many aspects could be highlighted, but there are four that should be emphasized
to the small grower. These are the effect that soil preparation has on:

(1) Liming and pH Control Most growers know that lime may be required and
rely on soil tests to determine needs. It must be emphasized that research has shown that
lime should be broadcast and thoroughly incorporated to at least 6-8 inches in depth for
maximum benefit. In addition, it should be applied well enough in advance of the crop
to allow the soil reaction to adjust. However, if lime is needed and if for some reason
it did not get applied in time, it should be applied even if it is shortly before plant-
ing. Thus, lime application is closely tied to soil preparation in that it is applied
prior to working the soil but relies upon proper preparation to incorporate it uniformly
and adequately in the soil.

(2) Indecomposed Organic Matter In most situations, the land to be prepared
for vegetables has vegetation growing in the soil prior to working it (weeds and/or crop
plants). Soil preparation should be done well enough in advance to allow this green
material to dry out or decompose. It has been shown that "green" organic matter can pose
serious problems. For example, it can affect the efficiency of nematicides by harboring
either the live nematodes or "eggs" which the nematicide cannot reach or can effectively
tie-up the material not allowing the full benefit to be realized. Additionally, green
organic matter can carry over or stimulate the incidence of certain soil-borne diseases
in the new crop and seriously affect its yield. One good example of this is the observa-
tion that "root rots" of beans is usually of greater severity where green organic matter
levels are high.

(3) Herbicide Response The use of herbicides is an effective tool that can
be used to control weeds. A major part of the herbicide program involves the proper
application of the material. Herbicides applied to poorly prepared soil can give poor
results. In these cases, it is not so much the fault of the material, but the poor
conditions for application. The frequent error is the failure to insure the absence
of debris or coarse clods (on heavier soils) which can "shade" out or interrupt the
application pattern. Thus, in these untreated areas, weeds can grow unchecked and
seriously compete with the crop.

(4) Effect on Crop Stand Where vegetables are direct seeded, a uniform well-
prepared "bed" is essential. A rough-textured bed surface with debris of various sorts
and uneven high and low spots in the field can result in very poor stands. The poorly
prepared situation can result in poor germination and uneven emergence from the lack
of uniform water control in high and low spots in the bed. It also presents the problem
of getting uniformity in depth of seeding.


These aspects are frequently taken for granted by experienced growers and
others closely allied to vegetable production and are assumed to be known by all. These
are points, however, that the inexperienced smaller grower frequently has problems with
and are overlooked when trying to analyze the cause of his problem.

C. Soluble Salt Build-Up in Seep Irrigated Soils of Mulched Vegetables

Progress has its price. Jet engines have cut the time required to travel between
continents, but not without an increase in noise and atmospheric pollution. The practice
of growing vegetables under full-bed mulch has increased yields with less fertilizer
and water, but not without the potential of increased salt injury to the crop or crops
which follow in the same field for several seasons.

This "accumulative" salt problem can be prevented, and must be prevented. A new
educational approach involving the county extension agent, the fertilizer salesman, and
the vegetable grower is needed. The problem seems to be this in a nutshell: Many fer-
tilizer recommendations are now being made on the new minimum stress (full-bed mulch)
system based on the old open bed soil test program, resulting in inefficient fertilizer
use and potential high salt problems.

Let us follow a rather typical example of a problem that could have been pre-

Vegetable grower X farms a large acreage of tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers in
southwest Florida. The cropsare grown under full-bed mulch system. The fertilizer sales-
man tested the soil and reported a pH of 6.3, calcium 463 Ibs/acre, magnesium 31 Ibs/A.
The crop history of three particular fields were as follows:

(A) Tomatoes for three consecutive years.
(B) Tanatoes and peppers for,two consecutive years.
(C) Fallowed to weeds for two years.

These three fields were planted in tomatoes this crop season. In general, the recom-
mendations were as follows for all three fields:

(1) 600 Ibs. superphosphate per acre, spread, broadcast and disked in prior
to bedding.

(2) 40 Ibs. N, 140 Ibs. phosphate and 40 lbs. of potash to the acre incorporated
in the false bed as a starter fertilizer.

(3) 2000 Ibs./acre of 18-0-25 in two bands on top edges of the flat, pressed bed
before covering with plastic.

The crops in the field (A) began to express stunting, restricted root growth
and stem discoloration at the soil line as the plants began to form the second clusters
of fruit. The grower detected the change in growth and called the friendly county
extension agent for help. Soluble salt injury was suspected and soil samples were
analyzed for total salts and composition (I and B). The results of the unfertilized
"furrow" area may be of interest: (total, ppm)

Depth, inches Fallow 2 yrs 2 cropped years 3 cropped years
0-2 868 1190 2968
2-4 742 322 1540
4-8 .318 616 1148


These figures indicate that the total field level of soluble salts had increased, and
that such cumulative readings should be considered when making fertilizer recommendations.

In the area adjacent to the plants, the soil in the top 4 inches showed that
the Field (C) had 1967 ppm, Field (B) had 2870 ppm, and the Field (A) (cropped for
three continuous seasons) had 3584 ppm. The level of accumulated salts by crop season
in this area of the bed reflects the cumulative effect also. Mature tomato plants would
not be injured by these salt levels, whereas, vegetable seedlings may be injured by as
little as 1000 ppm.

Perhaps the lesson to be learned is that the soil should be tested for total
salts before each crop, and a complete "I and B" evaluation made if the total level is
very high to determine which salt or salts might be causing the high reading. From
this information, a more meaningful fertilizer program can be determined (rate, place-
ment, low salt index materials) or an alternative use suggested for the field in

It is suspected that these high levels of fertilizer are not being leached very
heavily after the plastic is removed. If adequate leaching is not possible, the grower
must depend more heavily on an accurate pre-planting assessment of the soluble salt
level in his field. The total salt test should be considered in addition to the standard
pH evaluation in our soil management program, especially for vegetable crops grown under
full-bed mulch in the same field for several consecutive seasons.


A. Timely Gardening Topics

These questions and answers are suggested for agents' use in developing periodic
(weekly) radio or newspaper briefs. They are based on letters of inquiry from Florida

(1) Timely Topic for Week of March 14-20


When is the best time of year to plant a vegetable garden in Florida?


A lot depends on which vegetables you like to grow and where you live in the
state. For most vegetables and for most locations north and south, spring plantings made
in March and April give best results. Spring is certainly the time of year to plant
warm-season crops. These are vegetables which are damaged or killed by frosts and
freezes. In this category along with others are beans, southern peas, squash, tomatoes,
cucumbers, soybeans, dasheens, chayote, eggplant, sweet potato, watermelons, cantaloupes,
okra, peppers, and sweet corn. Of course, these warm-season crops can be grown in the
winter months only in south Florida.

Yields of lima and soybeans are good when planted from March to September. How-
ever, okra and southern peas do best planted a little later in the spring, with lowest
yields from mid-summer plantings. Sweet corn and cucumbers do poorly when planted in
mid-summer, also. Pepper and tomato yield best with spring and fall plantings. Eggplant
and sweet potatoes need to be planted in the spring and early summer to mature before
cold weather. Most leaf-crops do poorly in the summer but some cool-season crops like


turnips, collards and green onion do fair planted March to September. March plantings
of some varieties of cabbage give satisfactory results; otherwise, plant them earlier.

(2) Timely Topic for Week of March 21-27


I am preparing my vegetable garden plot for my spring garden. How should I put
out the fertilizer?

Over the years, gardeners have derived various successful techniques for apply-
ing fertilizer, some of which work just as well as others, for most crops and some of
which are best for individual crops. For beginners who have not had an opportunity
to experiment as yet, here is a good method for a wide range of vegetables. While you
are workingg your soil into seed-bed condition for planting, scatter (broadcast) some
fertilizer over the surface of the entire garden area. One to two pounds per 100 square
feet is usually sufficient. Mix it well into the top 4 or 5 inches of soil. Do this
just prior to planting (one or two weeks before being best). Then band some more
beside the seed or plant row at planting time. Banding is accomplished by making two
shallow furrows about six inches apart and 2 to 3 inches deep, spreading the fertilizer
down the furrows, then refilling the furrows level with soil. Use a string to mark off
a seed row between the two rows (bands) of fertilizer.

Keep in mind that fertilizer applied prior to or at planting time probably will
not last through the gardening season. Additional small amounts may be needed as the
vegetables grow, and can be applied as sidedressings.

(3) Timely Topic for Week of March 28-April 3


This spring I want to set out some Georgia Red sweet potato plants. What can I
do to prevent weevils?

Sweet potato weevils are so widespread in Florida that their occurrence in your
garden is highly likely. Their damage can be quite severe. Where once good control
measures were possible due to such chemicals as DDT and dieldrin, today only fair control
is possible due to the non-availability of these two chemicals.

Substitute chemicals which offer fair to reasonably good protection from weevils
are methoxychlor, thiodan and diazinon. These materials are not 100% effective but
do offer some measure of protection. Combining their use with good cultural practices,
the following procedures should be exercised:

(a) Buy clean plants from a certified weevil-free source.
(b) Plant where sweet potatoes have not been grown, if possible.
(c) Select one of the above mentioned insecticides and spray as suggested here.
(d) Mix insecticide according to dilution recommendations on the label.
(e) Dip plants (fully immerse in spray) and let dry. Be sure to wear gloves
and take all necessary precautions.
(f) Prepare beds and set out plants.
(g) Three weeks after setting, spray diluted insecticide in a swath down row
center. Cover plants and soil 24-30 inches wide.
(h) Repeat every three weeks for a total of three applications.


(4) Timely Topic for Week of April 4-April 10


Could you please tell me if there are varieties of garden vegetables that are
not bothered by nematodes?

There are many varieties of vegetables which have been reported to show resistance
to certain kinds of nematodes. However, it is not always known whether or not these
particular varieties grow well in Florida conditions. A variety may not be injured
too severely by nematodes, but may have other detrimental characteristics such as
unfruitfulness. Therefore, select a variety which has good all-around credentials.

Here are some of the more commonly grown varieties which have been reported to
have some resistance to certain species of rootknot nematode.

Beans--several varieties, but none commonly grown in Florida.
Beans, lija--several varieties but none commonly grown in Florida.
Pepper--Early Cal Wonder, Ruby King (others)
Edible soybeans--some uncommon varieties
Southern pea--Cal. Blackeye No. 5, Clay, Colossus, Floricream, Iron, Miss.
Crowder, Purple Hull Pink Eye, Red Ripper, Zipper Cream (others)
Sweet potato--Allgold, Centennial, Goldrush, Nemagold, Nugget, Porto Rico,
and Red Jewel (others)
Tomatoes--Atkinson, Beefeater, Better Boy, Small Fry, Tuckcross K (others)

B. Know Your Vegetables Dasheen

Dasheen (Colocosia esculenta) is sometimes called taro. Dasheen is a tall-
growing tropical plant which resembles the ornamental elephantsear plant. The broad,
round-to-heart shaped velvety-green leaves are borne three to seven feet high. The
leafstalk attaches near the center of leaf and does not touch the "notch". These leaves
are acrid and unpleasant tasting and should not be tasted until specially cooked and

The dasheen is grown for its edible underground parts which consist of one or
more large central corms (called a 'nammy") and a cluster of swollen lateral tubers.
The central corm may be as large as 8 pounds, but usually it is around 1 to 2 pounds.
The smaller tubers are usually two to four ounces in size. Both corms and tubers have
scattered coverings of a cloth-like husk which can be peeled away for improving the

Dasheen can be grown in all parts of Florida, but requires a warm frostless season
of at least 7 months. Some commercial acreage is found in south and north Florida,
although there is considerably more of the similar cocoyams or malangas grown. Some
home gardeners grow dasheen for food purposes while many homeowners grow few plants
for ornamental landscaping tropical effect.

In Florida, dasheens should be planted as soon as danger of spring frost is past.
They grow throughout the summer and mature the main crop in October and November. Along
about the time the tubers begin to form (August), the leaves begin to die back until


very few leaves remain at digging time. Tubers left undug in North Florida remain in
good condition until they start to sprout in the spring. However, they do not persist
for many seasons in this fashion as a perennial.

Dasheens are planted much like potatoes, except that the tubers are planted
whole. Each tuber should be planted three inches deep and spaced two feet apart in
four-feet rows. Fertilize with 6-6-6 garden fertilizer at 800 pounds per acre (2
pounds per 100 square feet) at planting, then sidedress with same amount again in June.

The dasheen has three main uses: (1) corms and tubers used as a potato, (2)
leaves as greens, once they have been boiled 15 minutes in water with a pinch of baking
soda, drained, then rinsed with boiling water.

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