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Friday, February 13, 2009

Sweet Potato Time

It's sweet potato starting time! If you have never started sweet potatoes before, you can check out my week by week postings from last March. You can pull them up from the dated blog archive or in "gardening" in the topic archive.

This year I am starting my sweet potatoes a bit earlier. I will hopefully have enough time to break off quite a few rounds of starts. I am only using one sweet potato to make starts this year due to space/house clutter from moving and continued construction. I was hoping to bring in some of the vine from last year's plants as a houseplant and try it as a ready to go start. Unfortunately, we were so busy with the construction and move I didn't have a chance to. Maybe this fall . . .

Anyway, last week I started my sweet potato. I am happy to see it is already getting roots. Here are a couple things I learned from last year:

- Not all sweet potatoes root the same. I heard that some are actually treated so they don't start to sprout in the store, which in turn leads them not to spout well out of the store. Since I have seen different varieties cycle through our local grocery store, I waited until they had some that looked as if they already had some sprouts forming - hoping they weren't treated.

- The water can get dirty quickly. I needed to have mine in a spot that was easy to check and easy to change - i.e at the kitchen sink. It isn't the best decoration, but hopefully it will look nicer when it gets some nice green leaves growing on it.

I don't plan on doing a week by week update this year, but I might have one or two. I'd love to hear about your sweet potato starts and things you learn if you try them this year though.


McKrola Family said...

okay.. so you just need ONE sweet potato sprouted?

do you cut it up and make more than one plant?

The Beginning Farmer's Wife said...

McKrola Family-
It's actually the sprouts you plant and not the potato - so you can get quite a few new plants.


Linds said...

Do you know anything about how potatoes will grow in pots? I'd love to start some againt this year but am not sure we'll have the yard space. said...

hey becca, i wrote you regarding last years posts and i did find them, so you can just skip that email, i am going to try this also. i have grown sweet potatoes, but never like this, always from starts from the nursery. this will be fun. i may try getting organic though, knowing they spray pesticides and retardants them, if i can even find them. i will keep you posted. jo

The Beginning Farmer's Wife said...

I'm not sure how they would do in pots. I would think it would be worth a try if you have big enough pots though. If I remember, you dug sweet potatoes last year, so if you can remember the amount of space they grew in and find a pot that size - keeping it well watered - it just might work. I'd love to hear about it if you try. Also, you might want to do a search on container gardening. You might find something about it there or get some other ideas on other things you can try. - It is a lot of fun to grow them from sprouts and it gives you something to do garden wise until the weather warms. Great idea about looking for organic ones.

Abiga/Karen said...

Could you explain a little more on how to do the sprouts? After the sweet potato sprouts or grows do you pull them off or cut up the potato between the sprouts and plant those? I will be watching how yours turns out. My daughter ordered some plants for us already but we would like to know how to do this esp. next year. Blessings.

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