Origin: Believed to have been domesticated in west-central Brazil, Beach climate – dryish with intermittent rains
Plant: Sept – March. During wet season – Spring, Summer, early Autumn in pots or directly into the ground (on a slight angle is recommended for greater root growth)
Harvest: Any time after approx. 12 months. Harvest by fossicking around the base of the main stem, feeling for tuber. Once they’re at least 15cm long they can be removed and the remainder continue to grow.
Propagation: by stem cuttings 20-30cm long, with all leaves removed.
Suggested Recipes: Cassava Cake, Spiced Cassava Cake, Root Vegetable Curry
Cassava will grow in any soil from sand to heavy clay (it’s often used to break up compacted clay soils). During extreme drought bushes may drop their leaves but spring to life again when rain returns. Avoid water-logged soils and plant in a raised mound if necessary. Can be grown as a hedge with 1 metre spacing, After 2-3 months of growth, mound up the soil around the base to encourage root growth.
Once tubers are harvested they need to be consumed (or cooked/frozen) within 5 days although they can be refrigerated to extend this another 5 days or so.
Variagated cassava can be eaten also but needs thorough washing and cooking to remove the bitter taste.
Tubers MUST be cooked with the lid off to deactivate the hydrocyonic acid after you have used a sharp knife to slice vertically to remove this thick outer skin which, when fresh, just peels away cleanly. Cassava can be boiled, baked, roasted, made in to chips (our favourite), added to soups and casseroles, grated for cakes and many baked goods.
Source of Vit A, B1, B2, B3, B17, C with minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, zinc
Tree will grow 2-3m; it is a perennial with a bush foliage canopy. Large, lush, deeply lobed leaves, similar in shape to paw paw. Tubers can grow 15-100cm long and weigh in excess of 5-6kg.