How to Plant A Sweet potato


One of the easiest and most sustainable things you can do in your household is to plant a Sweetpotato.  If you've ever left a Sweetpotato or potato out too long and noticed that there are little green or purple shoots coming out of the "eyes" of it, you can plant it and grow more rather than throwing it out or composting it.  It literally takes no time at all and only entails 3 steps:

  • step 1:   Dig a hole in the dirt
  • step 2:  Put the Sweetpotato in the hole
  • step 3:  Water  
A Sweetpotato In Progress

A Sweetpotato In Progress

That's it!  It's so easy, you'll forget you did it at all because it took only a few minutes.  Later, about 7-14 days later, you'll be pleasantly surprised when a cluster of heart-shaped green leaves appear out of nowhere, and then you'll remember what is growing underneath - a Sweetpotato - probably a few actually.  Most likely, that Sweetpotato has multiplied as each of the little eyes that started growing on the potato when you planted it has formed a new shoot. It usually takes about 3 months until you'll be able to harvest the tubers (garden talk for little potatoes), but you'll have fun watching the leaves grow bigger and multiply into a bigger and bigger patch of green.  One "slip" (garden talk for potato sprout/starter) can yield up to 12 plants, depending on how many eyes were on your Sweetpotato starter.

You can also grow them in containers - just use a 1 to 2 gallon pot or tub (the storage tubs work well for this).  You need a container that will be at least 6-8 inches deep and 12 inches or more wide.  Poke some drainage holes in the bottom, lay some rocks down or a layer of mulch on the bottom of the tub and then fill with good organic potting soil before you plant.  Don't forget to water. ;)

Ali Wright