Great recent Wall Street Journal article: "Why Fruits and Veggies Are So Crazy Cheap in Chinatown" (if that link doesn't show you the full article, try the first search result here). It's about a book titled "From Farm to Canal Street: Chinatown's Alternative Food Network in the Global Marketplace", by Valerie Imbruce, and it's a fascinating story, a must-read.
If this spurs you to do some shopping, consider buying "A Cook's Guide to Chinese Vegetables" by Martha Dahlen, which you can buy in e-format so it's always handy, either from Amazon Kindle or Apple iBooks (which has it for a dollar cheaper, plus it seems to be a more recent edition).
As for actual where-to-shop tips, Here's a swell annotated list of Chinatown markets by a Chinese woman who lives in the nabe (here are her other lists, many of which are great, though all pretty old). And in the WSJ article, Ms. Imbruce recommends "the 40-foot sidewalk fruit stand on Mulberry Street just south of Canal Street, and the vegetable stores on Mott between Grand and Hester streets." The article notes that "some of the best bargains can be found on day-old produce, at the sidewalk stands on Forsyth Street in the shadow of the Manhattan Bridge. Here, $8 buys a 20-pound box of mangos."
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