Mashua seed is difficult to produce in quantity and is not available every year.
Mashua is normally propagated vegetatively, by replanting tubers, which are clones. Mashua also produces true seed, although it requires a frost-free autumn and early winter in order to mature the seeds.
When you grow out true mashua seed, you will get a brand new variety that you can maintain indefinitely by replanting the tubers. Plants that are propagated vegetatively are very appealing this way: if you get a plant that you like, you have a stable new variety that is all your own.
These seeds are collected from the early flowering variety Ken Aslet. In most years, we are able to collect seed of Ken Aslet even if all the other varieties fail due to cold weather. Seedlings of Ken Aslet produce tubers that range from light yellow with no striations to near orange with very heavy red striations. Flesh color is usually light yellow, less commonly very bright yellow/orange. About 5% of the seedlings flower as early as Ken Aslet. Flavor tends to be on the strong side, although you will occasionally get a mild one.
Mashua germination is slow and irregular, requiring 2-6 months. Seedlings develop rapidly once they break the surface of the soil.
15 seeds. Expected germination rate is about 60% in six months, but may be greater if seeds are given more time to germinate.