You may have seen this plant before, but didn’t know it was a special potato variety that grows fruit on branches.
Referring to potatoes, people immediately think of tubers that grow in the ground, and are a common food used in many places.
But have you ever heard of potatoes that grow fruits on trees, not roots in the ground? It may sound strange, but don’t deny it, it’s true that there are such strange potatoes. They are also called with a very special name “sky potatoes”, also known as air potatoes or vines potatoes.
“Heavenly potato” or “vineyard potato” is very special because there are tubers growing right at the canopy of leaves like this. Wild species in the wild are plants that can thrive and replace beneficial crops in the area, changing the balance of the ecosystem. Although wild plants are not always poisonous, they are removed to prevent their impact on the native environment.
The tree “potato of heaven” is also such a plant; They grow very quickly and invade the habitats of other plants.
1. What is “Heavenly Potato”?
“Heavenly potato” is a vine of the yam family, native to Asia and sub-Saharan Africa. According to the most recent research by scientists, this air potato variety originated in China.
In 1905, this variety was sent to Florida (USA) for research as a medicinal plant and today it can be found in many places throughout Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and right now. even in Vietnam.
In 1999, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (USA) added this plant to the list of harmful wild plants, which means that they cannot be planted, used or moved to another place without permission. permission.
2. How to distinguish “Heavenly Potato”?
“Heavenly potato” is actually a wild climbing plant. “Heavenly potato” is a herbaceous plant that can sprout from a large tuber in the ground or from a small tuber at the base of the leaf. One plant gives a lot of bulbs, they can grow quickly. The “sky potato” rarely flowers, the tubers grow along the vine and usually bear fruit in the fall and winter. Because it can grow very quickly, a tree grows about over 20cm per day and can climb 20 to 30 meters in length.
The leaves are alternate along the stem, at least 20cm in length and width, heart-shaped, enlarged at the tip and tapered at the end.
This variety can germinate under the ground or at the base of the leaves. Outwardly, they are quite similar in shape to Da Lat potatoes. However, if you pay close attention, you will see that the outer skin of this potato variety is quite hard, can be peeled off, then the green skin and peeled green layer can be used.
Potato tubers can reach the same size as regular potatoes.
In some parts of the United States, potatoes are smaller in shape and lighter in color. In Vietnam, this variety can be found in the forest edge of basalt lands. The outer skin of this potato variety can be peeled off and the green skin inside is viscous, so it is easy to identify. Potatoes have tubers as big as 2kg, 3kg and even 4kg. As a plant variety that can grow in many different soils, but they often appear in forest soils and quickly invade other varieties by climbing up the trunks of mature trees.
3. Is the “Heaven Potato” edible?
Scientists recommend not to plant and use this variety arbitrarily . Many people believe that if this potato is picked and left in a cool place for a long time, when cooked, it is very flexible, and the potato also has its own flavor. However, when it is not clear how to use them and their properties, scientists recommend that you do not use them arbitrarily.