Jicama, Thai (Mexican Yam Bean)
Jicama is a crunchy, starchy root that is eaten raw or cooked. Although jicama is grown for the tuber portion of the plant, the tuber grows under a climbing legume plant and will need a trellis or fence for support. Jicama thrives in hot weather with high humidity levels, making it a great veggie to grow in Hawaii. Plants will produce lima bean-shaped pods and bunches of white flowers. The skin, leaves, stems, pods, and seeds are toxic and should be discarded once the root is harvested.
Thai jicama, also known as yam bean or true jicama, produces large 4–6-inch fruits that can weigh 5 lbs. This variety has white flesh that is sweet and crisp with light brown skin. Fruits will store for a long time after harvest.
Days to Maturity: 150-270 days
Plant size: 4-6” roots with vines that are 6-8 ft tall.
Plant spacing: 12” apart
Sun, soil, and water requirement: Jicama prefer to be planted in fertile, well-draining soil that is loamy and sandy. Plant them in a warm and sunny location along a fence or trellis for support. Plants will need 2 inches of water a week to deliver large, healthy tubers.
Pruning: Pinching the growth tips will encourage bushy, dense foliage. Removing flower buds will promote root production.
Harvesting: Tubers will be ready to harvest 5-9 months after transplanting. If planted in soil that is light and rich with organic matter, smaller tubers may be harvested at 4 months and still taste just as good! You can tell your root is ready to harvest when the foliage dies off. Stop watering your plant a few weeks before harvesting to begin the curing process. Remove the tuber from the soil and remove and discard the vine. Store jicama in a dry, cool, and dark place.
Culinary: Peel and rinse your tuber before preparing it to be marinated or cooked. Jicama is delicious in salads and is commonly used as a water chestnut or bamboo substitute due to its crisp texture and mild flavor.
Nutrients: Jicama is low in calories, fat-free, low in sodium, and a rich source of vitamin C and fiber.
Special considerations: If you see any part of the jicama exposed to the sun, or above the soil line, cover the root with soil.
Companion planting: Plant your jicama with corn, beans, sunflowers, ginger, or cilantro. Keep jicama away from tomatoes and potatoes.
** Pots and plants may vary from the picture depending on the size and maturity ordered. All plants have been carefully hardened off and are ready to be transplanted into their permanent garden home or pot once delivered.
** Growing details provided are general. Conditions will change depending on your location, elevation, climate, rainfall, and accessible sunlight.
** Nutritional information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.