Moringa - The Drumstick Tree
The moringa tree is one of nature’s gifts, often accredited with numerous health benefits. It is rich in nutrients, supporting nearly every system in the body.
All parts of the moringa tree are edible, but like any food or herb, do your research and determine if it can effect any existing medical conditions or current prescriptions you may be taking.
If in doubt, consult with a medical professional. Go slow and low when adding moringa to your diet. Each person responds differently, so watch for any unfavorable digestive changes.
Moringa trees prefer hot climates and soil that is mostly dry. They do not like clay soil and seeds will easily rot if the soil is too wet during sprouting. I plant 3 seeds in a shallow well and after planting, thin to the strongest tree. Seedings do not transfer well, but that is not to say it is impossible. Choose a planting location that will allow the tree to grow 20 feet tall. They are known to make huge strides in the summer, growing several feet in a season.
How to Eat a Tree
Use 1-3 teaspoons daily in beverages, foods, smoothies, and teas. Leaves may be used fresh or preserved by drying. Select large, dark green leaves. Dried leaves may be ground into a powder and stored in an airtight container. Leaves are the preferred way to consume moringa.
Seeds, produced in pods, are an annual event, forming elongated drumsticks. Allow the pods to enlarge and turn brown before harvesting and collecting the seeds. Tender green pods and seeds are steamed or boiled like peas or green beans. Seeds can be roasted (like chickpeas) as a snack.
Bark and Root
The tree’s bark and roots can be ground, combined with vinegar and salt and used as a condiment, similar to horseradish. Allow the tree to get big and strong enough before harvesting the bark and roots.