Planting Sweet Potatoes

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

I recall an interesting idea from Avis on a sweet potato vine project. I thought it was very fascinating and I was inspired to do a similar experiment.When I bought four sweet potatoes from a peddlar, who is a farmer herself, she recommended her way of planting i.e. by placing the sweet potato about an inch into the soil.

So I tried her way as I know that I could still plant using Avis' method later if this one fails.
I placed two sweet potatoes into the same container which I had sown some daisy seeds earlier. The young daisy shoots were unfortunately all eaten up by tiny snails that were in the soil. I subsequently managed to pick out four tiny snails from this container!

This time round, when I planted these two sweet potatoes, I took some precautions. I dropped some crushed egg shells around the sweet potatoes to act as barriers. I read from somewhere that snails do not crawl on egg shells as their soft tissues would be injured by the sharp shells.

Avis, here is my progress report... after three weeks in the soil, some shoots have begun to grow.

Btw these are purple sweet potatoes. I planted two and cooked the other two... they tasted sweet and nice :-)

Now I am looking forward to seeing the flowers and foliages' shape and colours. I have no idea how they would look like. If those young shoots continue to grow well, I would be able to post later ;-)

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  1. Great experiment, Steph. I'm really not good with Sweet Potato and Yams, which are terms that are sometimes used interchangeably. Some are dioscoreas (yams) and some are in the morning glory (ipomoea) family (sweet potato). I'm confused. I've never seen anything that purple, though. Looks like the inside of a magenta dragon fruit.

  2. Ah, so that's the way to plant sweet potatoes. I'm hopeless at tubers but now I can try this method.

  3. Hi Steph, I was elated when I saw the photo of the sweet potato shoot coming out! I am cheering for your success! Looking forward to reading the update of this sweet potato.

    For your enquiry on the yellow plant that I posted, the plant is not expensive. I grow it in a pot. I got it from a Sg Buluh nursery, one of those in the compound near the Hospital. May be going there again next week. If I see it, I will check out the name and the price for you.

  4. Very unique purple sweet potato. One time I forgot to cook a sweet potato and it grew tiny shoot on one edge. I chopped that 1/3 part off, cook 2/3 and placed the shoots under a tree. It starts to grow about 12" now. I will post it on my blog next time. I'm glad you plant sweet potatoes, it is good for health, I think you can eat the leaves too (stir fry).

  5. Fun experiment, Steph! I've never tried purple sweet sure is pretty! Will you grow more next time?

  6. Lynn, oh I am not sure if I would grow more in my limited space garden ;-)

    VueJardin, I look forward to seeing yours. for mine, those little shoots grow so fast. I could see the leaves growing bigger and more each day.

    JC, tq and so kind of you to look out for that yellow plant for me.

    Prospero, it is easy for us (Chinese) to tell the difference between yam and sweet potato. We use yam to cook certain dishes. Yam when cooked is yummy and has a special taste but not sweet.

  7. Steph, I haven't seen any sweet potato in that shade! That's an amazing purple!! Thank you for your tip about surrounding the sweet potatoes with crushed egg-shells.

    Have a great weekend!

  8. Stephanie,
    I can already see the little leaves on your sprouts. That's how mine looked when I started using the water method. Mine has now started to trail! I'm going to post a new picture soon. I may transplant mine to a container soon. Maybe I'll just find a place to squeeze it into my garden outside. It'll be interesting to see if the vibrant color of your potato results in different-colored leaves on your vine... Good luck!

  9. It looks almost like a beetroot! I have never seen one that colour. We plant the white and yellow flesh sweet potatoes by slips. These are cuttings from the plant.

  10. Wow Stephanie! Your sweet potatoes surely look yummy! And they are the purple ones too!! I love the purple ones! Even sweeter :D

  11. An experiment on sweet potatoes. That's very interesting Steph.. I tried planting with shoots before. As they grow, we keep pinching out the shoots, for fried sweet potato shoots!..
    Hope yours will grow well...

    ~ bangchik

  12. Interesting to grow them in a pot. You may need to constantly top up the soil or use a deep pot so the roots and tubers can develop properly.

  13. Steph, you were on the right track with your "mascara gallow" comment. There's a longer explanation at around comment 20.

  14. Wow, purple sweet potatoes! Stephanie, we also eat its leaves, how about you? This is a good vegetable also for beauty. :) I like sweet potatoes very much especially the one near orange color.

  15. Thank you Blur Ting for the tip!

    Muggle, Kanak, Avis, Bangchik&Kakdah, Sandy, Islandgal246, now I find that this plant very very useful as every part can be eaten and has ornamental qualities as well ;-)

  16. Wow! i've never seen purple sweet potatoes. My best friend would love them (she's a purple nut).




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