How to Grow Sweet Potato Greens From Sweet Potatoes
The Amazing Greens
A little HIstory
Historically the sweet potato is said to have originated from South and Central America between the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico and the mouth of the Orinoco River in Venezuela. Christopher Columbus and his party of explorers are believed to have brought the vegetable to Europe from where it spread to Asia and its hinterland. North Carolina is the leading sweet potato producer here in the United States. In 2012 North Carolina produced 1.24 billion pounds of sweet potatoes! If you are familiar with the product, it is sold in supermarkets across the country as a fresh root or packaged in cans labeled Yams and sweet potato as a requirement of the FDA (Food and Drug Administration). Americans may sometimes call the sweet potato a yam because in some countries it is called a Yam, but it is not in any way related to the genus typical Yam family. Sweet Potatoes are in the same family as the Morning Glory and other ornamental plants of the same genus like Nightshade, even if some of those might be poisonous.
Buy The Variety of Sweet Potato You like Most for Propagation
I fell in love with the orange fleshed sweet potato because it is sweet and tasty. A few years back I was given vines and planted a small patch in my backyard garden. I reaped so many sweet potatoes, I could not think of growing new vines from scratch without picking just the right variety of sweet potatoes.
Sweet Potato Field
A few seasons ago, I lost my vines after relocating several times and I was just tired of going to beg for some from a woman I know who only plants them for their roots. My ten year old daughter and I decided to experiment with the store varieties we bought. I had this beautiful memory of running in wide open former potato fields as a child. We would wander into an old potato field looking for new shoots of sweet potato leaves. Whenever we saw a shoot, it meant there was a sweet potato underground.From those memories, I had the brilliant idea that I could grow my own container sweet potato leaves without the vines.
Following are the step by step instructions on how to do it and create your owner container garden to enjoy:
Materials You Will NeedClick thumbnail to view full-size
Step By Step Instructions For Your Project
- Select those potatoes that have spores or signs on their skin that they could germinate. Often the most convincing sign is a tiny root spore or a little bulging, showing signs of new l life. Put that potato aside in a dry but warm place where they could germinate.
- When the signs of life are unmistakeable like in the following picture;
Identify The Raised Areas On The Sweet Potato
3. Spores like the above are a sure sign of life happening inside the potato. If you keep the sweet potato for a little longer, you end up with more defined outgrowths like the one below. However, you do not need to wait until it is so big, to start cutting off the pieces that you will plant.