Since I took my plot on, I’ve always experimented with sweet potatoes. Some years have been better than others, especially as they can be hard work, and not always suited to our inconsistent climate.
Sweet potatoes need a lot of warmth and prefer sunny, sheltered spots, but even if the crop is poor, I reckon they’re well growing anyway. The foliage is a really attractive addition to any plot or garden.
I’ve not managed any big ones, but usually get a good bagful of smallish potatoes that make for a few different side dishes – a welcome change from your standard tattie.
Last year, I put a cellophane wall around my plants to try and get some extra warmth to them. This worked fairly well but did keep getting blown over, and putting it back up time after a time became a nuisance, so this summer I’ve just gone with the flow and planted out with no added protection.
I also put some plants in bags on a sunny patio at mum’s house. The area is a little suntrap and mum’s had success with other heat-loving veg there. We ordered O’Henry variety of plants from the web, as they’re recommended for container growing.
The plant’s leaves are finally dying off, signifying harvest, so this morning I initiated stage one of my sweet potato harvest: the allotment.
I wasn’t really expecting much after such strange year weather-wise, and the first plant didn’t do much to lift my hopes:
However, to my surprise, they weren’t all piddy. I did get a fair crop from the rest of the plants, and weighed in about 800g of sweet potatoes from allotment row:
Sweet potatoes don’t keep very well, so I’ll be using mine as quickly as possible. I’m particularly looking forward to trying some sweet potato chips.
Next up is a trip to mum’s to see how her patio potatoes have gotten on.