Plant in full sun, some afternoon shade is ok. Plant in May when weather has warmed for the season, in raised rows about 8” high to improve drainage. Space 12-18” in rows 3-4’ apart. Don’t over-feed sweet potatoes. Mix compost into the rows before planting, but don’t fertilize during the growing season. Keep the rows weed-free early in the season. Water well during dry spells.
Two of our favorite varieties:
Porto Rico: Compact vines with big yields make this a good choice for small gardens. Matures in 110 days.
Centennial: Good disease resistance and early maturing, 90-100 days.
Harvesting & Storage:
Stop watering 3-4 weeks before harvest to reduce splitting in the tubers. When the foliage begins to yellow, the tubers are ready to dig. The skin of a sweet potato is tender and easily damaged, so be gentle when pulling them up. Cure the tubers in a warm (around 80 degrees), shady spot for a week or two. Don’t let the potatoes touch each other during this time. After curing, wrap in newspaper and pack them in a box and store them in a cool place for up to six months.