Sweet potato is popularly referred to as "sweet potato". However, this vegetable has nothing to do with potatoes. This name appeared due to the visual similarity of the tubers.
Sweet potato has a sweet taste and looks more like a pumpkin. The culture tubers are used in cooking. Compared to potato tubers, they have much more nutrients, therefore, they are used not only for food, but also for medicinal purposes. In China, he was even called "the fruit of longevity."
What is sweet potato? Simple and indoor morning glory
Plant from the Ipomoeev family. In decorative floriculture, a crop such as a flower is often grown with which is called morning glory... In this genus, there is also a sweet potato morning glory. Ornamental varieties are usually used in floriculture, but their potato fruits are also edible and can be eaten.
A native vegetable from the tropical regions of America. For the first time, the culture began to grow in Colombia, Peru and Chile. And today it is usually grown in tropical and subtropical regions of America, as well as in India, China, New Zealand.
Morning glory is a herbaceous vine. The length of the lashes can be up to 2 meters. Previously, Ipomoea sweet potato was grown exclusively for food purposes, but today it is grown for indoor, outdoor and urban landscaping. However, decorative varieties of morning glory are used for design, which were bred specifically for these purposes.
The length of the stems can reach 5 meters... In indoor floriculture, it rarely exceeds 3 meters. The height of the culture rarely exceeds 20 cm... The leaves are large enough.
The shape of the leaves is usually heart-shaped. The color of the leaves can be green or almost purple.
Sweet potato, as already mentioned, has nothing in common with potatoes except for the visual similarity of tubers.
Sweet potatoes can have completely different colors: pink, cream, orange and white. The taste of the fruit is also different, but they are all sweet. Fruit weight can reach 3 kilograms... The weight of the smallest tubers is about 200 grams.
Benefits of sweet potatoes
The composition includes many vitamins and minerals... These are vitamins PP, F, C, as well as vitamins of group B. Among the elements found in sweet potatoes, one should highlight:
The chemical composition determines the beneficial properties. Sweet potatoes are recommended to be consumed:
- With cardiovascular diseases;
- In order to cancer prevention;
- In order to lose weight;
- For the treatment of insomnia, neuroses, depression and chronic fatigue;
- To strengthen the walls of the stomach and prevent gastritis, stomach ulcers;
- To improve immunity.
At the end of the 16th century, it became known that the use of sweet potatoes helps to increase libido. It is especially useful for women to use the product during menopause.
Contraindications when eating a vegetable
Not recommended use in the presence of the following diseases:
- Ulcerative colitis;
- Stomach ulcer;
- Individual intolerance;
- Diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
It is also not recommended to use the tubers of this culture for women who are in a state pregnancy and lactation.
- Sweet potato tubers may have different flavors... The taste of the tubers can resemble a banana, nuts, melon, pumpkin, squash, or chestnut;
- In America, tubers with orange pulp are more often grown. In Asia, batan is preferred with purple or cream-colored flesh;
- Alcohol, sugar, and molasses can be obtained from the fruit. In addition, cooking uses stems and leaves culture. However, they must first be soaked in water to destroy the bitterness.
Popular varieties include the following:
- Nancy Hall Is the most popular variety. It was withdrawn at the beginning of the 20th century. From the moment of planting to the moment of harvesting, about 100 days pass. The skin of the tubers is light in color. The pulp is yellow with orange specks. Can be eaten raw after several months of storage;
- Ginseng red - a high-yielding varietal variety of "sweet potatoes". The tubers taste sweet. The taste is reminiscent of that of chestnut fruit. From the moment of planting to the moment of digging, at least 100 days pass. The variety is well kept;
- Betty Is another popular variety with good yields. Batty can also be consumed raw. Raw is reminiscent of carrots with nut flavors. The peel has a reddish tint. The varietal variety practically does not bloom and is very well stored.
Sweet potato recipes
Various dishes are prepared from sweet potatoes.
You can make delicious chips. For cooking you will need:
- Cut into thin circles;
- Pre-drylaying out on a paper towel;
- Then put the circles on a baking sheet, which you must first grease with vegetable oil;
- Sprinkle with salt, pepper and Italian herbs on top;
- Bake in the oven within half an hour.
You can also prepare delicious dishes from the tubers of the culture sweet-tasting pureeperfect for baby food. To do this, you need to put the peeled tubers in boiling water and cook for 20 minutes in salted water.
Boiled sweet potatoes must be wiped with a sieve or meat grinder.
To prepare the puree soup you will need:
- Sweet potato;
- Meat or chicken broth;
You can also use other ingredients such as rice, noodles, peas. In the boiling broth, you need to put sweet potato slices, and then chopped onions and carrots. They can be initially overcook in a pan with the addition of sunflower oil. Finally, add salt, pepper and herbs.
Sweet potato salad
Sweet potatoes are a good option for a variety of salads. Can be used in salad boiled or fried.
Combines with many products. The best options are tomatoes, shallots, celery, apples, avocados.
To prepare a delicious casserole, you will need the following ingredients:
- Sweet potato;
All ingredients beat until smooth... The sweet potato must be pre-baked in order to whisk well. Put the prepared mass on a greased baking sheet. You can add flakes and marshmallows.
Growing and propagating a plant
Since sweet potatoes are native to the subtropics, they need to create the necessary conditions when growing.
Features of the
For growing in the middle lane and in the suburbs, you will need initially germinate tubers... To do this, it is recommended to keep the planting material in water or in a soil mixture before planting.
It is recommended to cut the tubers in two. This will allow you to get a richer harvest.
You can already start sprouting tubers in March... It is required to plant them in the ground after the formation of shoots with a length of at least 10 cm.
It is recommended to cover the soil with a film before planting. It is advisable not to remove the film during the growing season. It is required to remove it only in the case of watering and loosening the soil.
Before planting, the soil must be dug up or plowed up. It is also advisable to add phosphorus and potash fertilizers, as well as humus. During the growing season, it is required to feed the crop with potash fertilizers. Also a good fertilizer - wood ash.
Planting depth of seed - about 15 cm... The distance between the bushes should be not less than 30 cm... The vegetable needs watering, but moisture stagnation in the soil cannot be allowed.
The temperature of the culture should not drop below 10 degrees. The optimum temperature for the content is within 30 degrees.
Growing in Ukraine
Cultivation and reproduction in Ukraine is no different.
However, to grow and plant it there easier, since the land there is more nutritious and the temperature is warmer than in the middle lane and in the Moscow region.
Care rules remain the same:
- Regularly required loosen the soil and irrigateavoiding overflows;
- Maintain the temperature at 30 degrees;
- Feed the culture with humus and potassium-phosphorus fertilizers.
In the open field
To grow a vegetable from a tuber in the open field, it is recommended to germinate the tubers first. You can already start germination early spring... It is recommended to do this in a vessel with water or in a soil mixture.
For better germination, the tubers are pierced with toothpicks.
Usually, the halves of the tubers are germinated, lowering the cut into the water by about a couple of centimeters.
For planting in the ground, cuttings are used that are formed on the tubers. Their length should be not less than 10 cm... These cuttings are the seedlings. You can buy them in specialized stores and plant them in the ground at the end of spring.
It is recommended to dig up tubers not earlier and not later than mid-autumn... Do not wait for frost. In this case, the vegetable will not survive well. It is also not recommended to dig up tubers in bad weather.
It is required to store tubers at a temperature about 10 degrees... There must be good ventilation in the room where the tubers are stored.
The approximate shelf life of sweet potatoes is about six months.
Application in decorative and landscape design
Liana is ideal for indoor, outdoor and urban landscaping. For this, landscape design uses spectacular decorative varieties morning glory sweet potato.
Ipomoea partners can be:
Culture can decorate gazebos, shop windows, verandas, as well as flower beds and flower beds.
The sweet potato or sweet potato is a tasty and healthy product that is grown in all regions under certain conditions of care. This is the culture of the Ipomoeev family. Morning glory sweet potato is a popular crop in indoor floriculture.
How to properly grow sweet potatoes in the middle lane
Ecology of consumption. Homestead: Sweet potatoes or sweet potatoes like to grow in warm conditions. The root part of the plant especially needs warmth.
Sweet potato or sweet potato likes to grow in warm conditions. The root part of the plant especially needs warmth. Since climatic conditions in the middle lane do not meet such requirements, we have to resort to new inventions and methods.
To provide the required temperature for the sweet potato roots, you need to build a special bed and make a mulching layer of film. On such a bed, the soil will always be warmed, which is necessary for a good harvest.
How the sweet potato grows, its features
The sweet potato looks very much like a vine, but its closest relative is the common bindweed. On a long liana, creeping along the ground, there are leaves in the shape of a heart or a blade. The plant is very unpretentious, survives in any soil. However, to obtain a good harvest, a temperature regime of at least + 25 ° C is required.
The growing season ranges from 85 to 190 days. The distrustful attitude of gardeners towards this vegetable is very exaggerated. They don't like to grow sweet potatoes because of their sweet taste. But only the dessert variety of the plant is endowed with a high sugar content, while other varieties are very similar in taste to potatoes.
Importantly, sweet potatoes do not suffer from harmful insects or diseases that affect nightshades. It does not require hilling, and long vines suppress weeds, which significantly reduces plant maintenance.
Sweet potato varieties for cultivation
Several varieties of sweet potatoes can be used for cultivation.
- «American beige". This variety was brought from the USA. Sweet potato leaves are three-toothed. The fruit has a moderately sweet taste. Therefore, it often looks very much like a potato.
- «White sweet potato". Was bred in Novosibirsk. The variety is considered very early and quite fruitful. There is practically no sweet taste at all, and there is a lot of starch in it, which hardly distinguishes it from our potatoes.
- «Ace of spades"Is considered an ornamental variety. He is able to set off other light plants well. But he is also able to give root crops. True, they turn out to be long and thin.
- «Bonita". It has white flesh and is not very sweet. In some regions, it is still being tested.
- «Beauregard". The growing season is 95 days. As the leaves grow, they can spread up to 2 meters.
Growing a vegetable from seeds
If you want to grow sweet potatoes from seeds, that is also possible. Just do not plant seeds directly into open ground. In middle latitudes, you need to plant through seedlings.
Consider when to start germinating seeds in these latitudes. Sweet potato seeds take a long time to germinate. They begin to be planted in late January - early February. Before planting, the seeds must be soaked in warm water for 48 hours. To grow sweet potatoes, you need loose and fertile soil. It is best to choose a substrate that consists of sod soil, sand and humus.
The seeds are buried 2 cm, sprinkled with earth and lightly tamped. Boxes with seeds must be covered with foil and kept in a well-ventilated room with a temperature of at least 18-20 degrees. Water regularly, but in moderation.
When the seedling reaches 15 cm in height and 4-5 internodes are formed on the shoots, it is considered ready for planting in open ground.
Sweet potato care
The most important condition for the "survival" of sweet potatoes in a garden plot is to maintain the temperature that is optimal for its growth. All other procedures are only additional. But first things first.
Fertilizing and feeding plants
Since sweet potatoes very actively take all nutrients from the soil, it needs constant and fairly abundant feeding (especially with the addition of potassium). Fertilization of the soil should be carried out approximately in the second decade of August (at least once a week), using compositions sold in specialized stores for this.
In addition, wood ash, previously infused in water for about two weeks, can be used as fertilizer.
We monitor the reproduction of plants in the open field
When growing sweet potatoes, the soil does not need overly active maintenance. It is enough to periodically weed it and make sure that the stems of the plant do not form roots in the ground during reproduction. To do this, it is necessary to check the rows with the plant more often, to lift the stems from the ground.
Regarding watering: the plant needs a lot of water only in the first 30 days after planting. Each watering is carried out only after the soil from above dries out after the previous watering. Watering frequency should decrease over time. Stop water access to the plant a couple of weeks before harvesting.
Harvesting is carried out 3-5 months after planting in the ground, so you can enjoy the taste of this vegetable by autumn (approximately October).
We fight diseases and pests
Since the sweet potato is practically not afraid of diseases or pests dangerous for other vegetables of the nightshade family, it practically does not need additional protection. The only ones who can “covet” the tasty tubers of the plant are mice, slugs, and beetles.
Preventing this possibility is very simple: you just need to treat the sweet potato with a remedy against the Colorado potato beetle several times. And no one else will "encroach" on the precious harvest.
On the territory of South America, yacon is propagated, for the most part, by rhizomes and seeds.In cold regions, this approach to vegetable cultivation does not work, since the plant does not have time to bloom due to the short summer, as a result of which it does not produce seeds. In such areas, which include most of the territory of Russia, yacon is propagated in other ways, namely:
- rhizome buds
The first method of plant propagation is the most preferable, as it gives a high chance of seedling.
When germinating seedlings from root buds, the material is prepared in late January - early February. The yacon propagation procedure is carried out according to the following algorithm:
- The rhizomes of the plant are carefully cut, trying not to injure the buds, and placed in separate containers, the bottom of which is pre-lined with moisture-absorbing material, for example, filtered paper.
- Glass or cling film is placed on top of the container to make an impromptu greenhouse.
- In such a greenhouse, high humidity is maintained by regularly spraying the litter with water.
- Periodically, the seedlings are ventilated so that rotting does not begin in the roots of the plant.
- After 2 weeks, the first young shoots of the yacon will appear. After that, the rhizome is cut again so that each new sprout gets one root. Fresh cuts are treated with charcoal: this way all the nutrients will go to feed existing seedlings, and not to form new ones.
- For better plant survival, the shoots are moved to pots with a nutrient substrate. The diameter of the container must be at least 30 cm. The substrate is prepared by mixing turf and peat in a 1: 2 ratio.
- At the end of the 8th week, the seedlings are placed in the open ground, making sure that sudden frosts are not expected.