Gynura bicolor or hongfeng cai 紅鳳菜 (or edible gynura) is one of the chrysanthemum family. There are two kinds: one that is green on both sides, and another with leaves that are green on the top and purple underneath. Both kinds are considered medicinal vegetables. Gynura bicolor is a perennial and therefore found for sale throughout the year; however, winter and spring is the best time.
Gynura is rich in iron and potassium, calcium, vitamin A, etc. According to Chinese food grouping Gynura bicolor is a ‘cool’ food, so the leaves are stir-fried with sesame oil and ginger (both ‘hotter’ foods) to achieve a balance. The stems and roots of the plant can also be made into tea by boiling with water. Choose leaves with few bruises and without black stains.
Taking cuttings is very easy.
- "Chinese Kitchen". communitycenter.org.tw. http://www.communitycenter.org.tw/sites/default/files/documents/publications/cot/COT_201003.pdf. Retrieved 2012-12-16.
- "Taking cuttings". GreenTaiwan. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqIRCHd0sXo. Retrieved 2012-12-16.