Are sweet potatoes worth it in a small garden?

julia42(9a)May 5, 2012

I'm considering planting sweet potatoes this summer for the first time, but I thought I'd get some opinions first. The main question I have is whether sweet potatoes are one of those veggies that is sooo much better homegrown. I don't have a huge garden (about 500 sf, including paths) so I plan my crops carefully. I love sweet potatoes, but they're cheap at the store, so my only reason for growing them would be if I could grow much better ones than I'd get at the store. What do you think?

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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

How much does your water cost? It looks like parts of zone 9a might be in the desert. In our Nevada community almost no one grows vegetables because of water cost.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2012 at 2:12PM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

I am trying sweet potatoes this year in my raised beds. From all I have read here on the forums, they are, indeed, ever so much better homegrown, and it would appear they produce good yields in relatively small space too (compared to winter squash). The ones I have ordered are "bush" types so they will have somewhat shorter vines. If you do a search in GW on growing sweet potatoes, you'll find lots of pictures and great information. Good luck!

    Bookmark   May 5, 2012 at 2:46PM
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They are better. Howmsoever, given that one plant can occupy 25-30 sq ft easily to make a few pounds of tubers, in a very small garden I would have other priorities.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2012 at 3:29PM
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art_1(10 CA)

About 2/3 of the way down on the first link there is a nice example of a ~4x4' trellised sweet potato bed. Warm temperature is important for sweet potatoes.

SWeetpotatoes Harvest

Sweet Potatoes!

Talk to us about sweet potatoes

Sand Hill Preservation SP Information

Here is a link that might be useful: sweet potato harvest

    Bookmark   May 5, 2012 at 3:53PM
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Looking at that photo I have to wonder if it is achieving much advantage. There is a lot of shading going on - especially for us growers in higher latitudes by august when the SP foliage is massive and the sun is much lower than in late june, a big hump of foliage like that will be throwing a lot of shade.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2012 at 6:35AM
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gardenlen(s/e qld aust)

g'day julia,

you could grow them in small gardens, there is no need to let the plant ramble the vines can be fed around and around over itself, the vines can be pruned back and use the prunings for more planting material or to add to the compost, also the leaves and young shoots are edible like spinach just wilt them is all that is needed.

they can also be grown in the shade.


Here is a link that might be useful: lens growing sweet spuds and pines

    Bookmark   May 6, 2012 at 3:34PM
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I'm trying for the first time this year. Ordered 6 different varieties, 5 each, from Duck Creek in OK.
I can hardly wait, I'm so excited! The slips should be here soon.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2012 at 5:05PM
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Well, perhaps it was just me, but while they grew well, and stored for months my first year, I would say that they were not better than from the store. They are certainly not a priority like tomato, red potato, squash, or beans

    Bookmark   May 6, 2012 at 6:15PM
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