Peruvian Parsnip (Arracacha) /Arracacia Xanthorrhiza/
Arracacha is an erect, perennial plant with short, hollow celery-like stems rising from a tuberous rootstock. It has up to 10 very thick roots than can reach 45cm in length. These taste like a sweet, nutty parsnip.
Arracacha can be used in all ways you would use a potato. Roots are delicious steamed or baked. Sliced thinly it can be eaten raw in salads.
Leaves and stems have a similar taste to celery. Can be blanched and added to salads or in soups.
Subtropics to tropics
Requires a well-drained moderately fertile soil in a sunny or partly shaded position. Plant anytime throughout the year at 1m spacing’s.
Plants take about 8 months from planting to produce a first crop and 10–14 months to produce a crop of mature tubers. In cooler climates expect to wait up to 2 years to harvest. At harvest time there can be as many as 10 tubers each the size of a carrot formed around the central root and total yield of the one plant is up to 2-3 kg.
Preventing the plant from flowering can increase yields.
Is usually grown from crowns of mature plants.
Dig up the whole plant for harvest, remove the leaves and set aside the roots for eating.
Divide by cutting apart the crown into off sets.
Allow the cuts to heal for a day before replanting.
Roots, stems and leaves.
Risks and weed potential
Harvesting & Processing
Harvest mature roots after 14 months but smaller roots can be ‘bandicooted’ carefully from the side of the plant after 6-8 months.
Arracacha has a short shelf life so harvest individual plants as needed.