How to grow sweet potatoes in the garden: when to plant

Anna OnishchenkoNews
How to grow sweet potatoes in the garden. Source: pixabay.com

Sweet potatoes are becoming an increasingly popular crop in Ukraine. As it turned out, this exotic vegetable is not difficult to grow even in our climate.

Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamins A, C, B, potassium, phosphorus, iron and other nutrients. Floritix told us how to grow it in our garden.

Usually, sweet potatoes are propagated by germinating tubers, because in the Ukrainian climate the crop usually does not grow, and therefore does not produce seeds. However, you can buy seed at any specialized store and grow the vegetable in your garden without any problems.

Sowing seeds

Sweet potato seeds have an incredibly high germination rate, but before planting, you need to place them in warm water for a day, then disinfect and dry them. The vegetable is sown for seedlings in late January or early February.

The substrate for growing sweet potatoes should be fertile and loose. Before use, it must be disinfected by roasting in the oven.

The seeds are buried in moist soil by 1.5-2 cm, slightly compacted and watered. Then the pots are covered with foil and stored until the first shoots appear in a well-ventilated place at a temperature of 18-20 degrees.

Caring for seedlings

Sweet potato is a heat-loving crop, so seedlings develop best at a temperature of 20-30 degrees. They need to be watered regularly when the top layer of the substrate dries, but in moderation so that moisture does not stagnate in the roots. After watering, the room with the seedlings should be ventilated.

When the seedlings reach a height of about 15 cm and each plant has 4-5 internodes, you can start hardening them to prepare them for outdoor conditions.

Planting outdoors

Seedlings can be planted outdoors when the air temperature is stable at 20 degrees and the ground temperature is 15 degrees. This period is usually at the end of April.

Choose an open, sunny area that is protected from strong winds. The soil should preferably be sandy loam or loamy, with low acidity and high nitrogen content.

Plants are planted to a depth of 15 cm, so that the two lower internodes are underground, and at a distance of 40 cm from each other. The distance between the rows should be 70 cm.

To ensure that the seedlings take root successfully, remove almost all of the leaves except for the top 2-4. After planting, compact the soil, water it, and cover each seedling with a glass jar or a transparent plastic bottle. You can remove the cover when new leaves begin to appear on the plants.

Caring for sweet potatoes is quite simple. The main thing to remember is that this is a heat-loving crop, and do not allow the roots to take root in the internodes and pinch the tops of all plants in the 20th of August.

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