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Goji Berries, expensive, but easy to grow tons

Posted by YOLF , 07 May 2015 · 1,352 views

horticulture grow stuff

Goji do tend to be a little expensive as a fruit and it's one those things that is so packed with the stuff that they put in the supplements, that growing it can give you great effects at low cost. Goji, even just the fruit or simple extracts, are probably the best mimetic for raising your antioxidant enzyme profile. The benefits are many. In the next blog post, I'll tell you what you need to keep an endless supply of these once you get growing.

Last I read, Goji were the only fruit with more antioxidant capacity than blueberries by weight. I love blueberry supplements, and I've grown blueberries... but blueberries take all year to grow less than enough for 10 fruit smoothies. To get them all year, you'll need a handful of varieties and will have to do alot of gardening work and your stroll through the garden may not be worth the time it takes to scavenge for the berries. The same goes for lots of other berries including raspberries, blackberries, and lots of other stuff. Growing your own is really more of a novelty at this point.

With Goji, you can turn cuttings into plants in the dark with a little molasses in some water! Not only is this stuff virtually indestructible, it produces like a robot factory for most of the year beginning in spring and going on as long as October! It's some wonder why this stuff can command the prices it does... There don't appear to be alot of calories in them either. There are apparently just 80 calories per 20 grams, or if we want to compare them to raisins as they are often described as being like red raisins, we value them at 160 calories per 40 grams. California Raisins have 130 calories per 40 grams, yes that's true, but for visual comparison, I've taken some pictures below of 40 grams of each.

 

40 grams of Raisins

40 grams of Goji (two servings)

40 grams of Raisins

40 grams of Raisins

Side by Side Comparison

Side by side volume comparison


So the volume is more the comparative factor, 20 grams of either is about a handful. Of course, goji don't IMO taste as good as raisins, though most raisins don't taste as good as California Raisins, so it's not accurate to compare a masterfully grown raisin to a Goji. The variety and effort involved in the cultivation and development of the two fruits is very different. Goji is basically a weed that didn't get much attention until it was found to be improving the health of people drinking from a Goji "contaminated" water supply. The people were quite fond of the berries and ate them too, but I'm guessing it was more of a filler food than a gourmet fruit. Goji don't really taste bad, but they can't compete for the palate the way many fruits can. I swallow mine whole like pills and have so far only purchased dried fruit from farmer's markets or online. I'll let you know what they taste like when my plants start producing sometime this year. As I mentioned early, I started my original Goji crop from seed indoors, probably around 2011 or 2012. It was fall and I had small, low power fluorescent light setup with a couple of pots and a DIY cloner for cuttings. They grew alot faster than I had anticipated. I selected the most vigorous two plants of around 100 which grew about 18-24 inches in a few weeks and were taking up too much space and filled up my cloner. It became unmanageable pretty quickly, even after leaving them in night cycle for several days and eventually weeks at a time and I wound up throwing them out cuz I just hadn't thought I'd be putting this much effort into growing the things. This time around, I spent less than $40 buying 3 year old plants that were already vigorous producers (not all plants will even produce, it's important to keep variety until you find out which ones do) that were cut back and just need to adjust and be transplanted. They are expected to produce soon after adjusting to the soil whereas plants grown from seed in spring might produce by fall. One transplanted, Goji will get deep tap roots that will make them pretty hassle free and drought resistant. I'm looking forward to free Goji now. Not sure if I'll have enough to last the year, but that shouldn't be a problem by next year. I should be putting these in the ground pretty soon.


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Best deal I could find for Goji:







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