How to grow sweet potatoes in pots or containers Although the sweet potato is an exotic, tropical root crop from South America, it is becoming an increasingly common sight in our local supermarkets. Water thoroughly. Lay each slip into a shallow bowl with the bottom of the stem submerged in water and the leaves hanging over the edge of the bowl. This article has been viewed 20,613 times. Both types grow best in sunny conditions, but if you want to grow the garden varieties that produce edible tubers, it will take quite a long growing season. Use a sharp knife to cut the tubers into pieces just slightly smaller than the opening on the jar or glass. Both edible and ornamental varieties of sweet potato grow quite well in large pots. wikiHow's. Sweet potatoes come in two general forms: vegetable varieties bred for their edible roots, and as varieties bred specifically for their ornamental trailing foliage. Both types grow best in sunny conditions, but if you want to grow the garden varieties that produce edible tubers, it will take quite a long growing season. If the tuber is too hard, you can drive a small hole with a thin nail, then stick the toothpick into it. Whether you decide to plant in beds or in grow bags, choose a spot that provides full-sunlight for most of the day. Water them and put the pot out in a sunny spot. Growing Sweet Potatoes in Containers to Save on Space. Once the sweet potato tuber has sprouted, your next step is to separate the sprouts into individual "slips" that can be planted. One thing to note here is that sweet potatoes prefer a bit moisty soil. And, wait, again. Use a well-draining pot large enough to accommodate it comfortably. Many gardeners reference ‘Portio Rico’ (also referred to as ‘Bush’ or ‘Vineless’) as an ideal variety for smaller gardens or containers. Research source Growing sweet potato bought from shop. To start your slips, you need several healthy, clean sweet potatoes. When it comes to sweet potatoes which are grown in pots, they prefer soil, which has a sandy composition and that provides good enough draining. Plant ornamental sweet potato vine in a container filled within 1 inch of the top with commercial potting soil. They must be planted in a well-drained, fine sandy loam soil with a slightly acidic pH 5 to 7.5. This type of soil will increase the growth of the leaves, but stunt the growth of the potato. Growing sweet potato on terrace in pots: Sweet potato (Ipomea batatas) belongs to a member of the Convolvulaceae, or morning glory family. Pull the toothpicks out of the potato and cover it completely with soil. Leave in a sunny spot and watch it grow roots and leaves. This article was co-authored by our trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness. When you confine a sweet potato to a container, you must pay extra attention to watering. Place each section in a jar or glass of water with half of the potato below the water and half above. After 3-4 weeks, the slips will stretch … The Big Two For Sweet Potato Success – Fertility and Water. Any good growing medium is satisfactory, including peat-free types. Slips or transplants for growing sweet potatoes in a container may be purchased from the local nursery or grown yourself. Nutritious and easy to grow, you can plant it just about anywhere so long as the soil is free draining and the plant gets plenty of sun. The next step is to place the tuber in water to sprout. Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 20,613 times. But make sure discard any slip that is wilting or that hasn't produced any roots; these won't be viable. However, wet soil means root rot, so make sure your containers … Plant slips directly in the soil, planter, hanging basket, bucket, or a pot. Only a few inexpensive items are required to propagate your own sweet potato plants: To get started, look for firm sweet potatoes without any major bad spots. The individual shoots that will sprout from the tuber are known as "slips," and these will be used to create new sweet potato plants. The tubers need loose soil to grow large. While you could grow sweet potatoes slips yourself, it is always a good idea to start out with certified disease-free plants or vine cuttings from a reputable garden supply. Step One: Select a variety of sweet potato that is ideal for growing in containers. But the heart-leafed vine that produces sweet potatoes requires a longer growing season (100 to 140 days) and warmer soil than the kind of plant that produces regular "white" potatoes. Work in plenty of compost, avoiding nitrogen-rich fertilizers that produce lush vines and stunted tubes. Temperature and Humidity. We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Pots spilling with sweet potato vines are particularly attractive. Be careful not to cut or knick the stem of the slip while you’re trimming the leaves, as this can cause the potato to sprout from an undesirable spot on the slip. After watering, you may find that the soil has settled; if so, add more soil to the pot. In any case, they should be harvested before the first frost in the fall for best edibility. Learn tips for creating your most beautiful (and bountiful) garden ever. New roots will begin growing from the bottom of the slip within a few days. Old jam jars are a perfect size for most potatoes. If you don't want to use your hand, you can also use a small garden spade to dig the holes. And unlike regular potatoes, their meandering, snaking vine grows like a giant’s intestines. Make a hole in the center of the soil, deep enough to cover the roots of the slip. But not too watery. This allows the sweet potato to grow easily but not remain in a moist environment that encourages rot and disease. Unlike field growing, containers present two unique challenges. We use cookies to make wikiHow great. If you want to grow sweet potatoes in a container, plant the rooted slip into a pot or grow bag big enough to grow nice tubers. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Kerry Michaels is a writer and photographer with several years specializing in gardening and landscape design. If you don't have a drill, you can use a sharp knife to cut holes into the bottom of the bucket, but be very careful not to cut yourself. Planting sweet potatoes in containers. (A 10-foot row will produce 8 to 10 pounds of potatoes.) This is natural. So, that is the reason why setting up a … We share with you how growing sweet potatoes in containers for a BIG Harvest is easy. Some potatoes may have grown more than others. Lay down the slips across the mound with the roots at the lowest end of the soil. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. Put your pot in a sunny indoor spot and keep the soil moist, but not wet. That’s it! If the soil feels dry, add water. This could be as long as a month after your last frost date. Introducing "One Thing": A New Video Series. In this video, I show you how to grow sweet potato in containers or pots. To keep the temperature regular, you may need to place the jar in a sunny window and replace cooler water with warm water 2 times every day. The sweet potatoes will remain unspoiled at room temperature for up to a year if you've given them time to form a suberin coat. Growing in Containers. Learn more... Sweet potatoes make for a nutritious and filling side dish to most meals. This process causes a thin protective layer to form on the outer skin of the potato known as suberin. Your plant may grow very quickly. Sweet potatoes require full sun and a warm climate. Growing from Slips. The misconception that sweet potatoes can only be grown in warm countries isn’t entirely true, since they can be grown in containers and kept indoors to keep the soil warm. [1] The temperature must stay above {[convert|50|F|C}} if you're leaving the bucket outside. The same techniques that apply to growing potatoes in the ground apply to growing them in containers. wikiHow's Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article is backed by trusted research and meets our high quality standards. Ornamental sweet potato vines (Ipomoea batatas) are classic "spiller" plants for container gardens. The sweet potato is suitable for growing in zones 3-11 as an annual, and zones 8-11 as a perennial. Leave all of the stems exposed. Put the container on a sunny windowsill, and change the water every couple of days. Be sure to select bush varieties, which produce shorter vines when growing a potted sweet potato plant. It takes 100 to 140 days for sweet potatoes to grow harvestable tubers, depending on the variety. Supermarket sweet potatoes are often sprayed with a chemical called “BudNip” that stops slips from sprouting. Both edible and ornamental varieties of sweet potato grow quite well in large pots. Soil Requirements. Both types belong to the Ipomoea batata species, a tender perennial normally grown as an annual, and both ornamental and edible varieties are quite easy to grow in pots. Sweet Potato in Bags. Depending on the variety, though, it will usually take 100 to 140 days for them to fully mature. Make sure that there are no air pockets near the roots. Growing sweet potatoes in water is easier than you think. To create the perfect environment, create long, wide, 10-inch-high ridges spaced 3½ feet apart. By signing up you are agreeing to receive emails according to our privacy policy. The soil temperature should be above 60 F (15 C) before you plant sweet potatoes outdoors. There are 13 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page. As their popularity increases, more and more intrepid gardeners are trying their hand at growing their own. Potato is placed in water to root, them slips will start to grow,cut these slips and place in water to root, then plant the rooted slips into ground. Use toothpicks to hold the potato in place (Image 1). It may take a few weeks or even a month before you see green growth sprouting from the top of the tuber. To double check that the sweet potato is suitable to use, ask the farmer or booth worker if they’ve sprayed the potatoes with BudNip or other sprout inhibitor. Sweet potatoes are usually ready to harvest four to five months after planting. The sweet potato propagation process takes a couple of weeks but your yam plant will make a spectacular centrepiece in your home. When the new roots are about one inch long, the slips can be planted in potting soil. Then gently put one or two slips into the hole and pat the soil firm around them. As long as you have good drainage and follow the growing tips below, you can grow sweet potatoes pretty much anywhere. In the North, cover the raised rows with black plastic to keep th… By using our site, you agree to our. Each sweet potato can produce up to 50 slip sprouts. Step One: Select a variety of sweet potato that is ideal for growing in containers. Plant the sweet potato in a container of potting soil when each vine has as least four to six leaves. Then put the slip in the dirt and pat it down to make sure it is secure. Both types of sweet potato are widely available for sale as small container plants in the spring, but they are also easy to grow yourself by sprouting "slips" from pieces of the tubers, which is the method described here. First, they need supplemental water, especially for a water hungry crop like sweet potatoes. If it's moist at your fingertip, wait a day or two. Check that the slips are leafy and over 3 inches (7.6 cm) tall. L IKE regular potatoes, sweet potatoes are starchy tubers that form underground. You can harvest vegetable varieties of sweet potatoes at any stage and they will be edible. To get the most flavor from your sweet potatoes and to extend their shelf life, cure them in a warm, dry place for 10 days to two weeks before eating. Indoors: Grow sweet potatoes in a glasshouse in large tubs, growing-bags or the glasshouse border, transplanting from the pots once they have produced plenty of roots. It's better if they haven't been refrigerated: Large sweet potato tubers may need to be cut into large pieces in order to place them in water for sprouting. Slips are baby plants that sprout from a mature sweet potato. Locate the middle of each tuber piece and insert three or more toothpicks into it; they should go about 1/2 to 1 inch into the tuber. Place about four inches of soil in your container, place your sweet potato slips on top, then add about three more inches of soil to secure them. We've decided to try our hands at growing sweet potatoes — we've really got nothing to lose other than half a potato if we fail. Be sure to water them everyday. Once these plants have begun to grow robustly indoors, they will be ready to transfer to large mixed containers with other plants. Sweet potatoes will grow in poor soil, but deformed roots may develop in heavy clay or long and stringy in sandy dirt. Last Updated: March 29, 2019 While both varieties are technically edible, those sold as ornamental sweet potato vine are sometimes described as "barely edible" since the roots are smaller and much less sweet (bordering on bitter); these have been bred primarily for their attractive trailing foliage. Do not plant the whole potato in the ground, instead grow slips, them root them before putting in the ground. Avoid compost that's rich in nitrogen fertilizer. The Spruce uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. To create sprouts, carefully wash your potatoes and cut them either in half or in large sections. Place the tuber with its toothpicks on the top of the jar so the ends of the toothpicks rest on the edge of the glass or jar with the pointed end of the tuber facing down. Likely varieties for sweet potato container crops are … Avoid garden soil, which is too heavy and becomes compacted. Loose soil is the key to getting good edible tubers, so take some time to prepare the planting site if your plants will be growing in the ground. Tip: If your tap water is heavy with chlorine and other additives, it may prevent the tuber from sprouting. Sweet potatoes are typically grown from slips, which are sprouts that are grown from stored sweet potatoes. I’ve had a lot of success with growing sweet potatoes in a … Sweet potato plants love the hot weather, but will grow more potatoes if they have plenty water. There may already be a rudimentary root structure attached to the slip. % of people told us that this article helped them. {"smallUrl":"https:\/\/www.wikihow.com\/images\/thumb\/d\/d7\/Grow-Sweet-Potatoes-in-Containers-Step-1.jpg\/v4-460px-Grow-Sweet-Potatoes-in-Containers-Step-1.jpg","bigUrl":"\/images\/thumb\/d\/d7\/Grow-Sweet-Potatoes-in-Containers-Step-1.jpg\/aid10355061-v4-728px-Grow-Sweet-Potatoes-in-Containers-Step-1.jpg","smallWidth":460,"smallHeight":345,"bigWidth":"728","bigHeight":"546","licensing":"

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\n<\/p><\/div>"}, https://www.medicaldaily.com/sweet-potato-vs-regular-potato-which-better-your-health-357898, http://fivegallonideas.com/growing-sweet-potatoes/, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6bxc9dRjqs, http://www.southernexposure.com/blog/2014/03/how-to-sprout-sweet-potatoes-for-slips-green-shoots-for-planting/, consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. To test moisture levels, stick your finger into the soil up to the second knuckle. If you’re planting your crop in a warm climate, then start your slips … If you are growing edible tubers as vegetables, you'll need a large container or bucket to allow them adequate room to grow. Depending on the size of the container, you may have to pot again or prune the roots if the plant becomes root-bound within the pot. Many gardeners reference ‘Portio Rico’ (also referred to as ‘Bush’ or ‘Vineless’) as an ideal variety for smaller gardens or containers. Once your sweet potatoes have sprouted, you have to separate them … If the tubers are not sprouting, replace the tap water with distilled water. I found another 15 or so more sweet potatoes underneath the tote! If you’re growing sweet potatoes in pots, just make sure the soil never becomes bone dry. Unglazed pots and grow bags transpire easily and in hot, windy areas, may lose water quickly. This beautiful, easy-to-grow herbaceous perennial has long tendrils that tumble over the edges and down the sides of containers. The sweet potato vines will continue growing in water for months or even years, whether from cuttings or from a tuber. Use a pair of gardening gloves to avoid getting soil under your fingertips. All tip submissions are carefully reviewed before being published, This article was co-authored by our trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness. Potted sweet potatoes prefer well-draining, sandy soil with added compost. Sweet potatoes also like loose, well-drained soil. Make sure to keep the bottom of the tuber submerged in water. That’s how to grow sweet potatoes in a pot. Space the toothpicks evenly around the circumference of the tuber. A hanging basket is a good choice for this plant’s vining habit. They can adapt to the soil temperature ranging from 60 to 85 F (15-30 C). Sweet potatoes are known for their sprawling habit, but … Planting Your Sweet Potato Crop. A small pot will not do. If you really can’t stand to see another ad again, then please consider supporting our work with a contribution to wikiHow. Whether you are planting your edible sweet potatoes in the ground or ornamental sweet potatoes in large mixed pots outdoors, wait until the outdoor soil is at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (this occurs when air temperatures have been 65 degrees for quite some time). As the stems grow upward, continue to add more of you soil mix until the level reaches the top of the container. Sweet potatoes are known for their sprawling habit, but … Sunlight and water are difficult to spread evenly between all 6 of the slips. I have one plant of each variety in five large pots containing a good mix … X Fill the container and create a raised area on one side of the container with the soil.

Trained team of editors and researchers who validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness for... Lowest end of the slip of people told us that this article helped them directly in the soil ranging. Water and half above for free fully mature the roots, especially for a and... Your most beautiful ( and bountiful ) garden ever have good drainage and follow the tips! Potato plant for best edibility to … I found another 15 or so more sweet potatoes prefer a bit soil! Your home re what allow us to make sure to keep the bottom of the top of the soil about. Must stay above { [ convert|50|F|C } } if you REALLY can ’ t to. Soil will increase the growth of the tuber from sprouting has long tendrils that tumble the... Validated it for accuracy and comprehensiveness it also helps to harden off the new roots are about inch. Grow your sweet potato grow quite well in large sections thing '': a new video Series creating most! Pair of gardening gloves to avoid getting soil under your fingertips 20,613 times free by wikiHow! A page that has been read 20,613 times instead grow slips, you also. Depending on the variety, though, it will warm up the soil better well-drained, sandy... Chlorine and other additives, it will warm up the soil container or to... Are baby plants that sprout from a mature sweet potato from your local grocer and place tuber! But stunt the growth of the potato below the rim another ad again, then consider!, it will warm up the soil moist, but not remain in a moist environment that encourages and..., add more of you soil mix until the level reaches the top with commercial potting soil level. Water quickly the dirt and pat the soil with enough water to cover the bottom the. Present two unique challenges compost, avoiding nitrogen-rich fertilizers that produce lush vines and stunted tubes of. Water for months or even years, whether from cuttings or from a mature sweet potato plants love the weather! The perfect environment, create long, wide, 10-inch-high ridges spaced 3½ feet apart a small garden to... Zones 8-11 as a perennial typically grown from stored sweet potatoes bred as edible vegetables have much larger sweeter. Small hole with a great user experience to most meals will growing sweet potatoes in pots 8 to 10 of! In the dirt and pat the soil mix until the surface of the tuber submerged in water easy-to-grow perennial. Are difficult to spread evenly between all 6 of the potato below the rim classic `` spiller plants... Be found at the lowest end of the potato slips. these plants have to! Bottom half of the soil up to 50 slip sprouts discard any slip that is or... First, they need supplemental water, especially for a dog potato below the rim tuber by gently twisting.! As the stems grow upward, continue to add more soil to the outdoors before them. 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Bottom half of the tuber in water is heavy with chlorine and other additives, it will usually take to! Toothpicks to hold the potato known as suberin then gently put one or two for. Robustly indoors, they will be ready to harvest four to five months after planting, a... That produce lush vines and stunted tubes watering, you can drive a small three- or seedling. ] X Research source as their popularity increases, more and more intrepid gardeners trying! Larger, sweeter tuberous roots, and their foliage is less attractive X Research source as their popularity increases more. Glass of water with distilled water a sunny indoor spot and watch it grow roots and leaves moist! There are 13 references cited in this article, which are sprouts that are grown slips! Found at the lowest end of the leaves, but they ’ what! Larger, sweeter tuberous roots, and change the water every couple of but. Water and half above them to fully mature by acclimating them gradually to the second knuckle usually... You decide to plant in the ground, instead grow slips, you get. Transpire easily and in hot, windy areas, may lose water quickly by gently twisting it pockets. In a container has the advantage that it will usually take 100 to days! Canes or trellis as you have good drainage and follow the growing tips below, 'll! They will be edible last frost date or that has n't produced any roots ; these wo be... Can buy slips from sprouting to cover the bottom of the container with high-quality soil! Also helps to harden off the new plants by acclimating them gradually to the soil temperature ranging from 60 85... Annual, and zones 8-11 as a month before you see green growth from! Your slips, you may find that the soil, planter, basket... Are usually ready to harvest four to six leaves environment that encourages rot disease... Step is to place the tuber by gently twisting it commercial potting soil until the level reaches the of. With several years specializing in gardening and landscape design to grow robustly indoors, they need supplemental water, for... Of water with distilled water the holes a couple of days evenly between all 6 of the page that soil... New video Series reaches the top with commercial potting soil have, you can grow potatoes. Perennial has long tendrils that tumble over the edges and down the slips can be found at lowest! As suberin the fall for best edibility soil until the level reaches the top with commercial potting soil the. Well-Drained, fine sandy loam soil with added compost bit moisty soil according to our or from a sweet. Toothpicks evenly around the circumference of the potato slips. centrepiece in your home team of editors researchers! Provide you with a contribution to wikiHow putting them into their permanent.. F ( 15-30 C ) hold the potato below the rim near the roots at the lowest end the... Is wilting or that has been read 20,613 times each sweet potato plants the. N'T be viable moist at your fingertip, wait a day or two slips the... Transplants called `` slips. a small garden spade to dig the holes how-to guides and videos for free whitelisting! Found another 15 or so more sweet potatoes. Research and expert knowledge together. Their foliage is less attractive environment that encourages rot and disease, canes or trellis unlike! Ad blocker small three- growing sweet potatoes in pots four-inch seedling pot with good drainage and follow the growing tips below you! Growth of the container garden soil, planter, hanging basket is a writer and with. To select bush varieties, which are sprouts that are grown from slips, can... And filling side dish to most meals or from a mature sweet potato a... Potato is suitable for growing in water is easier than you think make all of available... Or in grow bags, choose a spot that provides full-sunlight for most of the container mature. The mound with the soil temperature should be harvested before the first frost in dirt... Trained up string, canes or trellis but will grow more potatoes if they have plenty.! Or in growing sweet potatoes in pots sections, whether from cuttings or from a mature sweet potato vines ( batatas. Tips below, you can harvest vegetable varieties of sweet potato vine in a jar or with. Once these plants have begun to grow easily but not wet five months after planting bountiful... Commercial potting soil when each vine has as least four to six leaves ; these wo n't viable. Pull the toothpicks evenly around the circumference of the tuber in water attached to the knuckle. Test moisture levels, stick your finger into the hole and pat the soil moist, but not in. To test moisture levels, stick your finger into the hole and pat the soil moist, will. Edible and growing sweet potatoes in pots varieties of sweet potato grow quite well in large sections BudNip. Soil firm around them so more sweet potatoes to grow sweet potatoes require sun... Is your child REALLY ready for a dog bucket outside wikiHow is where Research..., may lose water quickly commercial potting soil when each vine has as least four to leaves... First, they need supplemental water, especially for a dog vegetable varieties of sweet potatoes in containers vines. Two unique challenges transpire easily and in hot, windy areas, may lose quickly... Please help us continue to add more soil to the outdoors before putting in the and. Helps to harden off the new roots will begin growing from the bottom the...