Red Japanese Sweet Potato Slips - Ipomoea batatas - 2 Slips

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95 days. Deep red-purple skin and deliciously sweet, smooth, dry white flesh. Staff favorite at Southern Exposure in 2017. The vigorous, disease-resistant vines produce abundantly and can do well in the North as well as in the South. Popular at many California Asian food markets. Slips are vine cuttings from sprouted sweet potatoes for transplanting to your garden in the spring. Delicious, nutritious, and easy to grow, sweet potatoes are also high-yielding, typically producing more than one pound per plant, and can be stored for months without refrigeration. Sweet potato vine grows practically anywhere, from full sun to full shade. The plant grows best in moist, well-drained soil; if the ground stays too wet for too long, sweet potato vine may rot and die. If you grow it in containers, be sure the pots have drainage to allow excess water to escape. You typically don't have to worry about fertilizing sweet potato vine unless you want it to grow faster. When it's happy, sweet potato vine can be a vigorous grower, especially old-fashioned varieties that can grow quite large. Don't be afraid to prune or clip back the plant whenever it seems to get out of bounds. Harvest the potatoes at the end of the season. When Your Sweet Potato Slips Arrive Don’t worry if your slips arrive wilted, or don’t have roots. This is normal. With good care they will perk up and roots will develop rapidly. Don’t store your new slips in water. If the wrapping is dry, moisten it. Plant your new slips as soon as possible: see details below. If your garden bed isn’t ready, or if the weather or soil is still too cool, heel in the slips (loosely plant them) in a flat or nursery bed in a sunny, warm temporary location for transplanting later. Sweet potatoes need warm weather and warm soil. Don’t set out your slips until nighttime temperatures are over 50°F. A soil thermometer is a helpful tool. Trying to rush the season will just hurt your young plants. Laying black plastic mulch a few weeks ahead of time will increase the soil temperature and keep down weeds. Remember to plan for irrigation if you want to leave the plastic down for the whole season. Sweet potatoes require loose, well-drained soil for best production. If you have clay soil or drainage problems, work in lots of compost or other organic matter and make raised beds, hills, or planting ridges approximately 8 inches high. Plant your slips at least 2–3 inches deep (2 or more nodes) with at least 2 leaves above ground. Space 10–14 inches apart in rows at least 3 feet apart, to make room for the sprawling vines. Wide in-row spacing leads to larger tubers. In hot weather, transplant in the evening. If the sun is intense, protect your little slips with some shade for the first few days. Water newly planted slips immediately and keep the soil moist for at least the first week as roots develop. Water frequently until the plants are established. In most areas sweet potatoes produce well without additional watering once established, but irrigation will assure a larger harvest, and even moisture helps prevent splitting and cracks. Giving 1 inch of water a week through the growing season is a good guideline. Keep the plants free of weeds until they can shade out competition. Cultivate carefully to protect the shallow roots. Side dress each plant with a shovel full of compost for better yields and larger sweet potatoes, though sweet potatoes generally produce well even with low fertility. Deer and rabbits are very fond of sweet potato vines, so protect your plants from browsers, especially while the plants are small. Harvesting You can harvest sweet potato leaves and young shoots for cooking greens at any time (just don’t take too much at once). The sweet potato tubers are ready to harvest as soon as they reach your preferred size. Try digging one of your plants when your crop reaches the recommended growing time for the variety, generally 90–120 days. If the tubers are still too small for your liking, try again in a week. If you dig very carefully, you can replace the plant and it will keep growing. Cut back on irrigation 3-4 weeks before harvest. It’s best to harvest on a sunny day when the soil is not too wet. Pull aside the vines so you can see where you’re digging. Using a garden fork (or a shovel or spade), begin digging 12–18 inches away from the center of the plant to avoid damaging the tubers. Go straight down about 6 inches, then angle toward the center and gently lift the potatoes out of the ground. Separate the sweet potatoes and let them dry in the sun for no more than 30 minutes. Handle gently to avoid bruising. Sweet potatoes left in the ground will continue growing until frost, although growth slows as the weather cools. Soil temperature below 55°F will damage the taste and storage quality of your tubers. Curing & Storage Proper curing is essential for taste and long-term storage. It allows for healing of any scratches or other damage, increases their sweetness, and improves storage quality. Immediately after harvest, let the tubers fully dry, then shake off excess soil. Do not wash the sweet potatoes! Cure by keeping them at 90% relative humidity and 85°F for 7–10 days. A furnace room or space heater plus open pans of water can provide the right storage conditions. For long term storage after curing, choose firm, round, bruise-free, well-shaped sweet potatoes with fairly even coloring. Store in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area away from light, at room temperature or a little cooler (55–65°F). Do not refrigerate raw sweet potatoes. Cold temperatures will give tubers a hard core and affect the flavor. Properly cured sweet potatoes should store for 5 to 12 months unrefrigerated.
  • Easy to grow indoor or outdoor
  • Harvest the potatoes at the end of the season.
  • Provide full sun with small amounts of shade
  • Also, know as Sweet Potato Vine
  • Immediate Shipping, 2 sweet potato slips

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