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Mostly a garden escapee weed of wetter areas, Jerusalem artichokes are related to sunflowers. They also tower and produce (somewhat less spectacular but nevertheless quite beautiful) yellow flowers. The tuber is eaten after the plant goes dormant in late autumn. However, they are notorious for causing gas, thus their other name, the 'fartichoke'. We would caution against eating ones from creek banks since as a root vegetable, they are more likely to contain toxins from the soil and water.