There is no question that sweet potatoes have always been one of America’s favorite foods. They are practically a staple at most family dinners, and many have favorite recipes that include them. While these are favorites because of their delicious taste and easy preparation, these same qualities also make them some of the most difficult vegetables to grow. These are not only expensive to purchase at the supermarket, but if you do not properly grow them, you’ll be stuck with a crop that does not live up to your expectations.
When planting sweet potatoes, it is important to remember that they will grow much slower than most other vegetables. Because they have a tendency to “hang” on to the vines by using strong roots, sweet potatoes grow slowly and need a lot of room to grow. Sweet potatoes also don’t do well under frost, so they should be planted in an area where they can be regularly fed with food scraps to ensure that they don’t die. Unfortunately, some plant varieties will take food right out of your hands by “grabbing” them during a frost and will die if you do not provide them with enough food to keep them going.
Planting sweet potatoes in acidic soil is also very bad for them. Because they grow so slowly and have such a large root system, they do not enjoy having their root structure damaged, and they therefore do not go well with soils that are too acidic. It is advisable that you either add a lot of organic matter to your soil or change the soil around the plants often to avoid this problem. Another good thing to know about this plant is that it loves limestone, so if you do happen to have limestone in your yard, make sure to place your Sweet potato plants in a location that is very acidic. That way, they will not have to deal with the effects of acidity.
One of the most important things that you need to remember when growing sweet potatoes is to water them on a regular basis, and when they are just starting to grow. Although you do want to make sure that they are getting the right amount of water every day, you also want to make sure that they are getting the proper amount of nutrition. They will need a high quality soil, one that contains plenty of moisture, but at the same time, they also need to have the proper drainage in order to prevent them from soaking up all the water that they can get. If you are unsure as to what kind of soil and/or nutrients you are working with in your area, it is best to consult a professional so that you know exactly what you are dealing with.
For optimum growth and harvest, you should always plant them in groups of three to five. By doing so, you will be able to maximize the amount of fruits that you will be able to get off of your plants. Although Sweet potatoes can grow on their own, they would typically do better if you were to group them together and help them grow naturally. In most cases, if you start growing these plants when they are in the small potatoes harvest stage, you will be able to catch any bugs early on, before they have a chance to start growing and destroying the rest of the plants. When you are harvesting, if there are a lot of leaves on the plant, that is probably a good sign that it is not getting the proper nutrients that it needs to grow properly.
If you find that your Sweet potatoes are not growing according to how you want them to grow, there is really no need to panic. The best thing that you can do is to try and remove any dead or dying leaves on the plant and work to get the soil around it moist. You should be taking care of this area for about a week before you expect anything to grow, so if you are seeing dead leaves on the other portions of the plant, that means that it is more important for you to water that area. Once you have taken care of this area, you should see that your sweet potatoes begin to grow in a healthy manner. However, you will need to keep an eye on them for a few months, so that they continue to get the kind of light and nutrients that they need to grow. After you have observed that they are doing well and your garden has expanded, then you may consider turning your attention to growing some larger varieties of potatoes.