rkunsaw
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Planted sweet taters

Well, sort of . We had two sweet potatoes that were sprouting so I cut the ends off and put them on a glass of water with toothpicks. Cooked the rest and had them with our peas and hog jowl.

Anyone else start slips this way?

Larry
I started with nothing and still have most of it!!!

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applestar
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Try to keep them VERY warm -- 80's if you can. Otherwise, they just sit there and sulk, or worse, can rot. I start slips late March to April for planting out mid-late May, but they tend not to grow until it starts to get hot. After frost, I put them outside, I've had best luck wrapping the container in black plastic and tenting the growing slips with clear plastic to protect them from the uncertain spring weather.

After the slips start to grow roots, you can pull them off and continue growing the slips in water, but they transition better/faster/stronger if you pot them up in sandy soil.

I bought sweet potatoes that were labeled "organic Japanese purple" at whole foods earlier in Dec. they were almost out of them after Christmas. Anyway, I saved one and have it half buried in a moist 50-50 potting soil-sand mix in a clear clamshell container. I put it on top of the HO light fixture and am hoping that's enough warmth.... It's WAY too early to be starting slips, but if I can get some growing, I can keep the vines alive until spring by treating it like a tropical houseplant. The high sugar Japanese sweet potatoes tend to mold and spoil and don't keep well in storage.

rkunsaw
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Thanks for the reply Applestar.
I know it's early but they were there and I couldn't resist.

I did the same thing once before. The roots grew into the water first, then the sprouts started growing and then put on leaves. I got a good crop of sweet potatoes that year.
I started with nothing and still have most of it!!!

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ElizabethB
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I have never heard of your method of growing sweet potatoes. In south Louisiana "mother" potatoes are planted and allowed to vine. The vines are then harvested and planted directly into the fields for new sweet potato growth. You present a very interesting concept. Looking forward to hearing more.
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When weeding, the best way to make sure you are removing a weed and not a valuable plant is to pull on it. If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant. ~Author Unknown

rkunsaw
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ElizabethB wrote:I have never heard of your method of growing sweet potatoes. In south Louisiana "mother" potatoes are planted and allowed to vine. The vines are then harvested and planted directly into the fields for new sweet potato growth. You present a very interesting concept. Looking forward to hearing more.
It worked before but I'm sure I started them too early this time.I'll let you know how it works out. :lol: Or hide my head in shame :oops:
I didn't want to waste a whole potato so I just cut off about 3/4 inch where the sprouts were growing.
I started with nothing and still have most of it!!!

imafan26
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Usually sweet potatoes are propagated by vine cuttings but you can produce them by sprouting the tubers too. Below is a link to a website on propagating sweet potatoes from the vine and from tubers. Unfortunately, this may not be the best time to start planting, but the information should be good for future reference.
https://www.adap.hawaii.edu/adap/Publica ... anting.pdf :oops:
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applestar
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Yesterday, as I was dashing out the door, I peeked at the sweet potato experiment and saw something going on :shock:
So I took pics today 8)

ImageImage ImageImage

Japanese Purple sweet potatoes started 12/20/12. I love it! :()
...now to keep these babies alive for the next FOUR months! :roll:

rkunsaw
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My sweet potato ends have filled the glasses with roots, the vines vary from 3 to 7 inches. about six or seven vines per potato.

I took one of them out and separated them and planted them in containers with potting soil.

Some sections had a lot of roots and some had very few roots but still had a
piece of the potato.

I'm hoping they will continue growing.
I started with nothing and still have most of it!!!

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Happy Days
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Very nice. I luv to see experiments like that! I do my sweet potatoes that way as well and I'm fairly certain yours will keep growing. I also carry my ornamental sweet potato vines over the winter like that.

Image

Image

imafan26
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I know you can eat the leaves of the purple sweet potatoes, and some sweet potatoes are grown for their leaves and not their roots. What other sweet potato vines have edible leaves?

Here many varieties of sweet potatoes are grown but only some leaves are eaten and not others.
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Ozark Lady
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I have always started sweet potatoes in a glass of water!
Then pull them off to root more and plant them when they are well rooted. Just normal to me.

However, some at the grocery have been treated with an anti sprout chemical and they will rot before they will sprout.

It seems to me, that when I get sweet potatoes at the store early on, that isn't a problem, but by Thanksgiving they are anti sprout and any after that won't sprout either.

I sometimes have to resort to ordering slips when I didn't get them early enough to start my own.
Talk to your plants.... If your plants talk to you... Run!

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Happy Days
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I am not sure which variety has leaves that are edible and which not. Does anyone eat them? Has anyone? What do they taste like and what did you think? I'm curious.

imafan26
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They are a lot like eating spinach. The flavor is different but they can be cooked and eaten the same way as spinach. The young tips can blanched and used to make a salad. I don't know anyone who eats them raw. Most of the recipes I know are Asian. Asians rarely eat vegetables raw. Most vegetables are stir fried or blanched before eating. They are very nutritious and the vines have to be cut anyway, so it is a waste not to eat them. Different cultures only eat certain varieties.
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HonoluluGirl
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The first time I cooked sweet potato leaves, I took a picture. I stir fried it with Spam, garlic, oil, salt, and pepper.

Image

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applestar
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:lol: They were making a big deal about spam on recent pisode of Hawaii five-O :D

I was looking into this edibility of sweet potato leaves a while back and there was a recipe for stems cooked kimpira-style. Don't know if I still have it.

I hope my Japanese purple sweet potato (red violet skin, yellow flesh -- purple water when skin is scrubbed) leaves are good eating, because mine is starting to vine and I won't be planting slips in the ground until mid-May :shock:
Image

...a reminder not to start these things too early :roll: :lol:

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Happy Days
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I really must try the leaves cooked. They look good! :D

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gixxerific
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I start mine in soil and a heating pad. I have found it's works best for me. I have tried this side by side with the water glss method for the last 2 years. The heating pad methods wins by far. I will do this again just to make sure. There is a thread on it somehwere here I can't find it right now.

It's all about the heat, as Rainbow touched on. Sweet potatoes love heat and lots of it. So if you can keep them warm the will sprout faster, I imagine this to be true with the water method as well.

Dono

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applestar
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I agree. When I tried the water method last time, I found it helped to slip the glass jar inside an empty black plastic nursery container and keep it in a sunny location slightly away from and and above the windowsill (where at least in my house, the cold transfer from the windows) -- in my case, the kitchen table.

Joyfirst
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imafan26 wrote:I know you can eat the leaves of the purple sweet potatoes, and some sweet potatoes are grown for their leaves and not their roots. What other sweet potato vines have edible leaves?

Here many varieties of sweet potatoes are grown but only some leaves are eaten and not others.
I am also interested in edible sweet potatoe leaves. They are all okey to eat, but some kinds are not as tasty, how much i understood from my googling. They say, best is to buy vines in chinese market, where they sell them for food, and just root them. Some of them have delicious leaves, but very little of actual sweet potatoes, when you grow them, so if you want both, you might have to compromise.
I wonder, if japanese markets sell them too, because we have couple not too far. Otherwise i would have to go to China town.

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Gary350
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I cut the ends of the sweet potatoes off then plant them right in the garden soil. I had 4 plants make 110 lbs of sweet potatoes year before last. I don't like sweet potatoes so I donate them all to the homeless shelter a week before Thanksgiving.

The vines will spread 20 ft in all directions from the mother plant. The vines will grow roots every place it touches the soil and grow more potatoes there. The mother plant will grow about 50% of the total potatoes crop the satellite potatoes make the other 50%. Sweet potatoes love it hot and dry and they don't seem to care if the soil is good or bad. This is probably the lowest maintenance plant you can grow in your garden. I use a rake to keep the vine in a certain area. If the vines get out of the garden and into the yard the lawn mower works great to keep the vines short.

Sweet potato vines make great ground cover for the rest of the garden. Plant sweet potatoes in the center of the garden and the vines will keep the grass and weeds under control.

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