Smallanthus sonchifolius (Apple of the Earth).
Native to Colombia and Ecuador, Yacon is a perennial plant that produces tasty tubers.
Yacon enjoys fertile, free draining soil in a full sun position and should grow to around 2 metres in height.
After flowering, the top growth will wither and die back. This is when the tubers will be ready for harvesting. Once harvested, the tubers can be exposed for up to two weeks which will accelerate their sweetening.
There are two types of tubers, the swollen brown tubers (for eating) and the smaller reddish rhizome at the base of the stem (where new shoots grow from).
Yacon has a crunchy texture. It is sweet, juicy and free from calories. It can be eaten fresh, mixed in with salads or cooked. The leaves of the plant can also be eaten and used in cooking.