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Commelina elliptica is a perennial plant that can grow up to 0.10 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a food.
South-western N. America - mountains of Mexico and south to Peru and Bolivia.
Prefers a light well-drained loam with added leafmold[
]. Succeeds in an ordinary, reasonably moist soil in a sunny position with some shelter[
Plants are hardy to about -10°c if the roots are protected from freezing[
]. The roots are best dug up in the autumn and stored like dahlias in a cool frost free place[
]. When grown in a light well-drained soil and mulched well, the roots usually survive the winter outdoors[
This species is closely related to C. tuberosa[
The following use is for the closely related C. tuberosa, but is also probably appropriate for this species[
Tubers - cooked. Rich in starch[
], but with a fairly bland flavour.
Seed - sow early spring in a greenhouse. The seed usually germinates in 4 - 5 weeks at 20°c[
]. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Division in early spring. Make sure that each portion has at least one growing bud[
Cuttings during the growing season. Very easy[