eGift Cards - Choose And Send

Apios americana or Hopniss heaven

I’ve been growing Apios Americana for a few years now. Native to North America, it’s a leguminous plant that has everything going for it – delicious tubers, beautiful ornamental vines with scented flowers and is nitrogen fixing too. Also known as Groundnut and Hopniss (from the Lenape word “Hobbenis”) it was an important staple food for many indigenous peoples in North America. I’m so excited to be working with this perennial edible plant that has so much potential as a useful high protein food crop.

The tubers can be used much like potatoes, but they are more nutritious and taste amazing. In fact it’s my favourite perennial vegetable and here at Incredible Veg I’ve got some exciting new accessions in my collection thanks to my good friend Rhizowen from Radix4Roots. I have both diploid and triploid types growing. The triploids which hail from more northern areas of the states aren’t able to produce seeds but the diploids can with the aid of pollinators. So I’m hoping that conditions will allow for pods to form on our plants and go to produce some seed. Well, I can dream!

To keep track of all the different accessions and for ease of harvest I grow them in large 40-50L bottomless pots rather than let them loose in the veg garden. They like moist conditions to grow well and need climbing support for the vines. I mix peat free compost and a bit of potting grit in my pots and use 8ft canes to support the vines. First shoots appear in the spring, vines begin to climb in the summer, followed by scented dusky pink/maroon leguminous flowers in late summer. The vines die back in autumn and the tubers themselves are hardy and can be left in the pots (or the ground) over winter. In my experience it takes about two years to obtain a decent yield of tubers for eating.

Below are some of our trial Apios americana plants tucked between our two tunnels which create a bit of a sheltered micro climate, hoping to extend the season.

Apios americana also known as Groundnut or Hopniss, freshly harvested tubers. The plant forms long rhizomes with edible tuberous swellings that look like strings of beads.

Apios americana plant trials

Apios americana, some of our trial plants between our two tunnels. Potted up in spring 2019, these will be transplanted into much larger bottomless pots next year with 8-10ft canes. Most of these are diploids with the potential to produce pods and seeds given the right conditions.

Apios americana, Groundnut or Hopniss harvest

Apios americana, Groundnut or Hopniss tubers harvested in their second year. Planted in spring 2018, tubers were harvested in Autumn 2019.

Here are some two year old plants grown in large bottomless pots. As long as the compost is kept moist the plants do really well grown like this and tubers can be harvested by tipping out the containers. Most tubers will have clustered in the pot while the plant is still able to draw nutrients from the soil.

Apios americana vines

Apios americana also known as Hopniss or Groundnut. Vines begin to climb from spring into summer. Good support is needed to produce vigorous vines. Here are some of our container grown plants (in bottomless 45L pots) with 8ft canes.

Apios americana starts to flower in late summer producing exquisite scented dusky pink blooms.

Apios americana, Groundnut or Hopniss flowers

Apios americana, Groundnut or Hopniss produce beautiful perfumed blooms. This plant has it all, delicious tubers, attractive vines and flowers and the ability to fix nitrogen.

Although most tubers are about 2-5cm in size, much larger tubers can be grown with improved varieties. Here’s a pic of one of our largest ever tubers which reached the size of a hen’s egg.

One of the largest tubers we have harvested from our stock – about the size of a hen’s egg. Tubers generally are 2-5cm in size but tubers from some improved varieties can get much larger.

The tubers can be used much like a potato but are higher in protein, calcium and iron. We sauté them in olive oil with sea salt and oregano but they can be also be boiled or roasted.

Sautéed Hopniss tubers

Sautéed Hopniss tubers (Apios americana) thinly sliced and sautéed in olive oil, sea salt and oregano, absolutely delicious.

“Thanks for everything, the info sheet was great. I planted the cuttings the day they arrived and have just multi sown the 9 star in seed trays. All very exciting, we’re now planning our perennial area.”

“You are right, perennial kale is fantastic! Thanks so much for the cuttings. I am a convert to having a corner of perpetual kale in the patch!”

“As the evening sun back lit the plants at Incredible Vegetables, I felt I was standing in one of the most important gardens of our time. Wildflowers working alongside an abundance of edimentals and perennial vegetables. A ‘food glade’ to rival the aesthetic of our greatest plant designers.”

– Jon Davies, garden designer, London Glades –

“I love your website and the work you’re doing. What you’re doing is exiting, useful, and one day will help to replace and enhance what human kind has damaged.With that our natural friends will return and we’ll be better for it.”

“Mandy, thank you. I am delighted with this plant – it is so strong and healthy and exceptionally well packaged – all done with loving care obviously. I shall look forward to having more plants from you.”

“Plants all arrived lovely and are growing well. I just wanted to say i was very impressed with the quality of the cuttings.. and its been a pleasure dealing with you. And I look forward to any purchases in the future.”

“The kale cuttings you sent survived the winter and are thriving. Thank you Mandy Barber you are the super hero of edibles, loving your work!!”

“I bought some Skirret seed’s off you last year. Well they grew and yesterday some got cooked and this message is just to say, they were delicious. Looking forward to a lot more next year. Thank you.”

“The Taunton Dean cuttings arrived a short while ago and never have I seen healthier looking cuttings! They are now firmly ensconced in some nice compost and are having a good drink. I even loved the packaging, which will be composted.”

“Hi I just wanted to let you know that I sowed half of my Caucasian spinach seeds and every single one grew, absolutely amazed, thanks for the seeds and keep up the good work.”

“Just to let you know that the lovely healthy looking plants arrived. Your plants are simply outstanding, every single tuber and plant are growing amazingly.”

“The plants arrived safely, I did not expect such magnificent specimens! I didn’t think I would be successful at stratification etc but I now have a whole bunch of Hablitzia seedlings sprouting after following your excellent advice.”

“Just to say, the Daubentons Kale is in the ground and looking well – thanks to the lovely damp compost encasing its roots…you do a good job at your end, I can tell by the way you package. Will be back for more of your wonderful perennials.”

“Thank you so much for all the vegetables, they really are incredible. I’m sure I’ve never before seen a healthier rootball than the one that arrived with our happy looking daubentons kale, and seeds and tubers are thriving thanks to all the useful information provided.”

“Thank you so much for sending such wonderful, healthy and very large plants. They are beautiful !! You packaged them so well and they arrived so quickly – I couldn’t get to the post office till the following day but they were absolutely fine. They’re now potted up and sitting in my ‘cold’ greenhouse while they adjust.”

Subscribe to News

Once in a while we like sending out a newsletter in order to keep all our lovely people up to date with all that’s going on at Incredible Vegetables.
Please leave us your details and we’ll add you to our list.

Get in Touch

We welcome your enquiries and comments. You can also reach us via our Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages and we love to see your photos, so do tag us in your posts.

If at all possible please contact us by email at, rather than by phone, as we can answer you much more quickly by email. 

If you do need to phone, the number is below - leave us a brief message and we will get back to you as soon as we can. Most days we are out working in the field so sometimes we are unable to answer the phone if we have our hands full.

We look forward to hearing from you,

Mandy and Julien

Item added to cart.
0 items - £0.00