Monday, 18 November 2013

Sweet Potatoes Total

I got round to emptying out the bins that the sweet potatoes were growing in. Not a great success.

From the first bin (harvested a while back) remember I got 3lbs 7oz in total, with 2 very large tubers & a few small ones which were usable. This was a bin with only one slip planted in.

The second bin also only had one slip, planted exactly the same as the first. From this one I got a total of 2lbs (missed a bit when I took photo so added it on). Again 2 large tubers & a few smaller ones.
second single slip bin.

The third bin was taller but narrower (repurposed kitchen bin)  than the first 2 bins and I had put 2 slips in this. When turned out there were much smaller tubers, only weighing in at 1lb 8oz.
2 slips in taller, narrower bin

Now the final bin (exactly the same as the third) had a few more tubers in weighing a total 2lbs 7oz, again very long & thin not big round fat ones like I had in the 2 single slip bins.

2 slips in taller narrower bin

Well if my math is correct that gives me a total of 9lbs 6oz. Not too bad. There was definitely a larger harvest from the bins with only one slip in so I will say it is better to give more room for tubers to form & don't pack them into too small a space. I also noticed that the tubers formed close to the surface, so I think shallower, wider pots seems to be the way to go.
Remember these were dug up from the allotment before I left so this probably gave them a bit of a shock, also I have been told that you need to earth them up just like potatoes. So next year I will try planting one slip only in a wide pot only half filled with compost & then top it up as they grow. I think I will also keep the pots in the greenhouse a bit longer before placing out to see if the extra warmth helps.


  1. This is interesting as we tried sweet potatoes this year and only managed to harvest very small tubers but we only used large plant pots and planted more than one slip in each. We guessed that they didn't have sufficient space so that seems correct! To be honest it was a friend that wanted to try growing them and asked if we wanted to share an order.

  2. I love the fact that you have detailed your trials with sweet potatoes as i am really keen to try growing a few tubers and now I know just the way to go with it. Thank you.

  3. Ah very interesting, I'm going to dig mine up soon now that the plants are flopping over. I'm curious as to how you prepare them for storage - do you simply rinse and let dry, or did you let dry out first then brush off dirt? This is my first year growing them and I am really looking forward to eating them!

    1. Hi Rozzie, sweet potatoes don't store like (normal) potatoes. I will brush off the dirt & keep the bigger ones in the bottom of the fridge but they will only last a month or so like that. As I prefer mine roasted I actually peel, cut, par boil & toss in hot oil, cook for about 15 mins & freeze (usually on a day when I'm roasting). That way I just open the bag, pop a few in the oven with my roast when I'm cooking each time. They only take about half hour to cook through thoroughly (you can do them for less time but I like mine crunchy).

  4. Your sweet potatoes look good. I've never thought of growing sweet potatoes but maybe I will try it.