How Many Sweet Potatoes Per Plant

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How Many Sweet Potatoes Per Plant Produce?

Sweet potatoes are tropical perennials. In developing countries, they are valued for their ability to produce long-stored tubers with a high carbohydrate content. Actual yields can vary dramatically depending on a number of factors such as variety, growing conditions, and the ability of the gardener.

How Many Sweet Potatoes Per Plant

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How climate affects yield

The climate can be the most important factor regarding the amount of sweet potatoes that will yield. Even short season sweet potatoes need a frost-free growing season of more than 100 days. USDA zones 8 through 11 best meet the requirements. In colder climates, gardeners should use season extension techniques. Even then, you may need to harvest early, as frost is threatening, which means fewer and / or smaller tubers.

Growing conditions and yield

Although they can tolerate poor soil, sweet potatoes will do much better if grown in the right conditions. At a minimum, they need:

  • Full sun, preferably eight to 10 hours a day.
  • Soil of moderate fertility, slightly acid, well drained.
  • At least an inch of water a week.

Pounds per plant

Almost all varieties of sweet potatoes will produce at least one pound per plant. Long-season varieties tend to produce more because the tubers will continue to grow until frost. Bush varieties generally produce less; on the other hand, they will easily grow in containers. Sweet potatoes that are subject to drought will produce fewer and smaller tubers.

Tubers per plant

Fast-maturing varieties – short-season plants that need about 90 days from planting to harvest – can grow fewer or more tubers. In many cases it is reasonable to expect three or four beautiful tubers from varieties such as Covington or Beauregard. A long season variety can produce eight or more tubers under the right conditions.

Yield per square foot

As a general rule, commercial gardeners expect a yield of about 288 pounds of tubers per 1,000 square feet. They space the plants about 18 inches apart. In your own garden, with similar spacing, you can expect comparable yields. In an intensive garden situation, you could get a lot more. Many intensive gardeners space sweet potatoes 12 inches apart.

Per Tuber Briefs

In addition to considering the yield of the tubers, you may want to know how many leaves you can grow with a single tuber. Each slide has the potential to grow a new plant. A tuber grown in water will continue to slip until the tubers are depleted. It is not uncommon to expect at least 10 and up to 30 slides from a single tuber.

Nutrition information per serving of one medium sweet potato

Calories:  130
Calories from fat:  0.39 g
Protein:  2.15 g
Carbohydrate:  31.56 g
Dietary Fiber:  3.9 g
Sodium:  16.9 mg
Potassium:  265.2 mg
Calcium:  28.6 mg
Folate:  18.2 mcg
Vitamin C:  29.51 mg
Vitamin A:  26081.9 IU

Source: National Agricultural Library (NAL), part of the Agricultural Research Service of  the US Department of Agriculture.


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