Ideas for storing Yacón propagules in PNW

Yacón propagating buds dry out and die fast at indoor room temperature. Not a lot of room in my refrigerator.

Last year I tried just leaving them in the ground so that they stay cold, moist, & well-drained. Every single plant died as temperatures hit 15F / -9.4C, which has happened last 2 winters in a row. As a result I have only 1 plant left! I expect winters to trend colder.

I would like to make Yacón a self-produced staple, but it’s not going to work if I can’t figure out how to overwinter it. Bill, you’ve been thru this. And I’ve read something written by you about overwintering in the ground. Any insights to share?

Is it frost penetrating to their crowns that kills them, or will they die just being too cold and too damp for too long? I notice that other highland tropicals overwinter just fine in the ground without any intervention on my part; I don’t think the ground freezes particularly deep. I thought I was burying the crowns below frost level, but they might have a preference for growing close to the surface, dunno.

Experienced advice appreciated! :pray: