Sweet potatoes or Ipomoea batatas ‘Beauregard’ have become increasing popular in Irish cooking recipes. They are delicious to eat and can be used in salads, soups, as chips, in breads and potato muffins.
Full Name: Ipomoea batatas ‘Beauregard’
Leaf: Heart shaped, green
Preferred Location: Grow in large pots on the patio – or in the greenhouse / tunnel.
Likes: Quality compost – Horkans own compost and add Gro-Sure fertiliser to the compost.
Sweet potatoes are becoming increasingly popular as part of a healthy diet. You can grow sweet potato in big plastic containers in the patio and they are suitable for a wide range of gardeners. Paraic suggests younger people who have been travelling to countries such as USA, Australia, Middle East and many of the Pacific Islands where it is a common vegetable will enjoy sowing sweet potatoes.
1.Sweet potatoes will grow best under the protection of a greenhouse, plastic tunnel or cold frame. Simple plant the sweet potato plants into the border soil or large plastic pots. Paraic grows them in large pots using Horkans own Multipurpose compost with some added Gro-Sure Slow Release Fertiliser.
2.Place the plants eight inches apart and water in well, three to four plants per pot is sufficient. Place the pots in a protected greenhouse or polytunnel to grow on or alternatively place the pot outdoors in a bright sunny sheltered location or sunny patio.
3.The plants are frost sensitive so protect the foliage in early spring by covering with garden fleece until all risk of frost has passed. The developing sweet potato plants take about five months to produce their crop of sweet potato tubers and are generally ready to harvest in late October / November.
4.Regular watering in mid to late summer is important and add a liquid feed once a fortnight when watering. Paraic has had found excellent results using liquid one fertiliser every two weeks from June to end of September.
5.When harvesting the plump tubers in late autumn spread them out on flat tables in the greenhouse to dry out for approx 10 days and then store in a garage or attic location and use the tubers throughout the winter and spring months.
The dietary advantages of Sweet potato are now well recognised and they are even recommended by dieticians for very young babies beginning their solid food diets. They are fat-free and cholesterol-free have only 130 calories per serving and are a good source of fibre – 3.9 grams.
An excellent source of:
Vitamin A – 7860 IU/serving
Vitamin C – 29.51 mg/serving
Potassium – 265.2 mg/serving
Calcium – 28.6 mg/serving
Iron – 0.79 mg/serving
Folate – folic acid – 18.2 mcg/serving