Perennial Vegetables - starting out

I now have three Chaya trees, aka Tree Spinach. I paid for two, and he gave me a smaller one, along with some picked leaves to cook (which I haven't done yet). He told me that theirs do better in partial shade, probably because of Houston's heat. Hubby's particular where I plant permanent things, I guess because he doesn't like to mow around things in tight places. So I'll let him pick where we'll plant them so I won't hear about it later on.

Although I've read about some Chaya varieties not having the stinging hairs, the ones I bought do have them. The seller showed me a few; they're on the leaf stems. He showed me how to pinch off a leaf without touching much of the stem. He also explained that if they touch the stinging hairs on the stems, they mostly just itch a few minutes, and don't get a rash. But I showed hubby how to pinch off the leaves just in case, so I won't hear about it later on LOL

The seller also explained how easy Chaya is to propagate. His family just puts the woody sticks in soil; they don't put a plastic covering over it, and still gets 50% rooting. He says they put two sticks in each pot to make sure they'll get at least one Chaya.

The seller, as well as Wikipedia article say they'll grow fast, so I'm looking forward to propagating more for family, friends, or neighbors, whoever wants them. We've noticed the next-door neighbors having more and more edibles planted (her father brings them; he's nice and always offers us food when they're grilling), and they're Mexican, so I bet they might want some. They already have a few peppers, nopales, and some kind of sturdy fruit tree/shrub (the girls can't remember what they're called in English); they survived Hurricane Ike, and the three floods from the last few weeks. So I'm thinking of giving them the smaller tree I got for free the next time I see the Grandfather next door, since we know he's the one wanting his kids and grandkids having edibles and is pushy that they get planted. My across-the-street neighbors are into fruit trees, so maybe he'll want one also.

My chayote, aka choto has sprouted and needs planting too. Since it's an aggressive perennial vine, I've chosen the backside of the boat shed converted to a bunny shed in the back corner of our yard that.Hopefully it'll smother the wysteria and honeysuckle I'm constantly having to hack down (and people in cooler regions actually desire our weeds ROFL). The rabbits could use the shade too. I read that they don't like standing water, so I'm going to have to build up the soil with some bricks we have, since we flood with the heavier rains.

All parts of the chayote are edible, so it would be a great sustainable/preparedness perennial to have should any disaster affecting food happen (hurricanes, animal-named influenza pandemics, depression).

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