Monday, March 16, 2009

Purple Top White Globe Turnip

Botanical name : Brassica campestris var rapa

The Purple Top White Globe Turnip is a popular heirloom turnip variety and is the most popular turnip variety used for its roots. This outstanding, all purpose turnip variety was introduced prior to 1880. This variety has a large globe-shaped root, with an irregularly marked purple cap, and its flesh is white, sweet, crisp, and tender. The leaves are dark green, large, and erect. The root can grow up to 5 inches in diameter like the size of a softball or much larger, but are best harvested when they are smaller and more tender.

How to grow
Turnip prefer full sun, fertile & loamy soil, is dry-tolerant. Turnip has tiny seeds. Sow the seeds into seedbed and cover them with 1/2 inch soil. The soil temperature should around 18 to 21 degree Celsius. Keep the soil moist for germination. Germination takes about 10 days. Space seeds 1 inch apart, thinning to 3 inches apart in rows about 12 to 24 inches apart. Growing session is late spring or fall.

Maturity info
Turnips can be planted for roots or greens and require about 2 months to mature. Radish sized turnips can be harvested after about 30 days or full-sized turnips after about 50 days. For greens, harvest the tops when they are about 5 or 6 inches high.

Cooking info
The young leaves can be cooked as greens, stir-fried or used in soup. The root is excellent raw for salad and juices, for pickling or cooking. In Japan, turnips are often carved into chrysanthemum shapes, pickled and used as a garnish.

Nutrition info
High in Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Manganese, Vitamin B6, Folate, Calcium, Potassium and Copper

Health benefit
Turnip juice is especially good for any mucous and catarrhal conditions. They have been used successfully in all bronchial disturbances, even asthma . Turnip packs over the chest are good for relieving bronchial disorders and packs over the throat are good for sore throats.

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