CAN I GROW JIAOGULAN
The medical world is abuzz right now with news of this wonderful plant that is touted to be the ultimate “immortality herb”. This “immortality herb” is reportedly able to extend our lives and make us live longer and has the ability to fight of cancer and other diseases which are the leading cause of death nowadays such as diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
This wonder herb is JIAOGULAN. Jiaogulan Ginseng is a fast growing herbaceous vine with a perennial rootstock within the cucumber family (Cucurbitaceae) and not the Ginseng family (Araliaceae) as its name suggests. It has five-lobed leaves and small yellowish-green flowers followed by small berries turning black with maturity on female plants. This species is dioecious, e.g. female and male flowers are born on different plants. It is native from southern Korea to China and Japan and used as a herb in traditional medicine for its said antioxidant properties for longevity.
Many of us would like to avail of this herb, sadly as it is said it’s commonly grown in certain parts of Asia. And this might be a barrier to its availability. But fret not! We can cultivate Jiaogulan too. And have the luxury of finding it just in our own backyard.
Here’s how to do it.
Things You’ll Need
- Jiaogulan seeds
- 1 square foot of land per plant
- Nutrient-enriched top soil
- Concentrated, water-soluble fertilizer
Till the soil to a depth of 4-6 inches. Keep the soil loose and light; packing will only stunt root growth. Add the top soil evenly to give the plants a healthy beginning.
Moisten the ground lightly, do not let it get soggy or sticky. Dig a 3-inch wide hole, 6 inches down. Place these holes one per 12 inches. Set the seeds into the ground, only after you are sure there will be no more frosts, and cover with excess soil.
Water the soil only once per week. After the jiaogulan has sprouted, add the concentrated fertilizer to the water and spray out onto the ground. Do not water while the sun is overhead; the water will not be absorbed by the plant.
Prune plants to stay within their own square foot of space. Overlapping can cause stress on stems and rivalry for sun and nutrients. Trim back any vines that are brown or broken, trim back branches at their parent stem, which have grown past your desired length.
TIPS AND WARNINGS
- Jiaogulan is born of a warm and dry climate. In Asia, where the jiaogulan is native, the average precipitation is 20 inches during the growing season of May through September. For this reason, if you are expecting rainfall, do not water the garden. Too much water can kill the root system of jiaogulan, because it is not able to adapt to the excess moisture.
With everything that you can possibly need and know, there’s no excuse to not live longer. So go ahead and start planting