More Sweet Potatoes

We planted 7 sweet potato plants last autumn, 4 in large pots in the garden, and 3 directly into raised beds. The pots were not successful, the chickens ate the vines of 2 pots, and they didn’t produce anything. The 2 other pots flourished, but I turned them out too soon, t’internet said I’d have kilos and kilos after 4 months. Β Both had 2 reasonable sized tubers ( 6 inches long and 3 inches wide) and 4 or 5 tiny tubers. Rather deceptively, the larger tubers were at the top and the tiny ones at the bottom, so I fooled myself into thinking that they were all of a reasonable size. They’d been growing for 6 months, so longer than the recommended time for huge crops – don’t believe everything you read on Pinterest!

The potatoes in the raised beds are doing much better, the vines are spreading through the beds, especially now we’ve pulled up the tomatoes and courgettes, and are putting out runners, which will produce new plants and new tubers. The potatoes are growing near to the surface and are a good size. Below is one I picked this morning, with my flip flop for perspective (UK size 6). I’ll record how many I get, this one weighed 450gms, and I picked another that weighted 250 grams that was poking through the soil.

The pots were planted out last November and harvested end of April. The one’s in the beds were planted in January. We had pretty cold nights (12 degrees C πŸ™‚ – it’s all relative) right until the end of Feb, so maybe it’s the warmer weather rather than the raised beds that have allowed these plants to do so well – they seem to be thriving in the 40+ heat.

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4 thoughts on “More Sweet Potatoes

  1. Thank you for the update on your earlier post, I may give them a go as it gets pretty hot here in the summer. Do you think I could just plant the dissected tubers, like normal potatoes?

    • Hi Eddy, following your blog πŸ™‚

      I’m not sure if you’d have a long enough growing season if you planted them in the ground outside directly, stating them off in the house or greenhouse gives you a 6 week advantage. They really are frost tender, one late frost and they’d be mush. I got 4 slips from one piece of potato I found in the back of the fridge, so that’s another reason not to plant directly, you’d have lots of vines for very few potatoes.

      By the way, the vines are edible, young shoots in salad, and slightly older ones steamed like spinach, and chickens love them, so make sure they’re fenced off πŸ™‚

      • 5-6 months is we are lucky, so I see your point. I’ll see if I can find one lurking in a supermarket. We wouldn’t normally buy them, but I used to make chips from them years ago and if we could grow our own they’d be on the menu again. Thanks for the follow by the way πŸ™‚

  2. Yes they are ridiculously expensive to buy, considering how easy they are to grow. I make chips from them also, and mash, and baked, and roasted -love ’em. We have over 600 normal potatoes in the ground at the moment also, Tom’s Irish, need I say more πŸ™‚

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