Keep your garden growing - see what to plant right now

Growing Sweet Potato, also Kumara

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
                       

Not recommended for growing in USA - Zone 5a regions

  • Plant shoots or cuttings (Slips). Best planted at soil temperatures between 17°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 40 - 60 cm apart
  • Harvest in 15-17 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Best in Separate bed
  • New shoots on Kumara
  • Well grown Kumara

Sweet Potatoes require a long warm growing season. Plant in free draining loose soil . Fertilise before planting but no more when the plants are growing as it will encourage vine growth. They will go for miles and you will get no tubers. If they do start spreading, lift the vines off the ground to prevent them rooting.

Mound up the soil about 20cm (8 in) before planting Let the plants die down, (leaves die or turn yellow) before harvesting the tubers. Dry them in the sun for a few days . then store in a cool dry place for up to five months.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Sweet Potato

Use mashed, boiled, roasted, baked or fried. Or use in soups, pies, casseroles, curries and salads.

Your comments and tips

18 Oct 18, john ward (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
where can i get some orange kumara cuttings .Not easy to find im having problems trying to get them sprouting
02 Oct 18, Warren Leedes (New Zealand - cool/mountain climate)
Firstly thanks for the web site I would like to grow the different coloured Kumara, how do I go about getting seeds please? Any advice would be gratefully received Kind regards Warren Leedes
04 Oct 18, Paul (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Plant the tubers that you want to grow but in a separate bed. They will sprout lots of shoots which will also have roots near the base. When the shoots are 40 to 50 cm long put a fork under the tuber and gently lift it out. Separate the shoots and plant them in the bed you have prepared for them as indicated in the article above. Last year, before I knew this, I planted several tubers where I wanted them to grow but after learning the right method I dug up three and planted out about 50 slips. The slips can be left in water while you are waiting to plant them out and in a few days mine put out prolific roots where the base was under water. You can also start the sprouting inside, cutting the tops off tubers and putting the cut down in shallow water, then planting them out when they start to sprout. Roots will also start growing but later than the shoots. Look for the eyes in the tubers as they are where the shoots come from.
08 Oct 18, Mike (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Also you can use 50-60cm sections of the growing plants 6-8 week old and plant them along the ground with the tip out of the soil. Roots will grow from where each leaf joins the vine.
01 Oct 18, Jeanette (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I'm in Ipswich Qld .I've planted a whole tubor of the purple sweet potato ( after it produced roots in water) and it's shooting up beautifully, do I break these off and plant separately? or try to grow roots in water first? I have had no luck at all with the orange sweet potato.
02 Oct 18, Mike (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Cut it into 4-6 pieces and plant. Then when they have grown for about 2 mths take some of the vine about 5-600mm long and plant in the soil laying horizontal with just the end sticking out of the soil. Water well for week or so.
19 Sep 18, Eddy (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Can they grow on canterbury christchurch
06 Oct 18, denise (New Zealand - temperate climate)
i live in Kaiapoi and grow in tubs. the soil is warmer
21 Sep 18, Mike (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Did you read the notes here. I suggest you do and pay attention to when to plant.
16 Aug 18, Adrienne (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Can you please tell me what is the best type of fertiliser to prepare the soil for kumara?
Showing 1 - 10 of 191 comments

Thanks for that, MIke...I'm now keen to give that a try. Cheers.

- Gary

Please provide your email address if you are hoping for a reply


All comments are reviewed before displaying on the site, so your posting will not appear immediately

Gardenate App

Put Gardenate in your pocket. Buy the app for iPhone, iPad or Android to add your own plants and record your plantings and harvests

Planting Reminders

Join 30,000+ gardeners who rely on Gardenate. Subscribe to our free planting reminders email newsletter


Home | Vegetables and herbs to plant | Climate zones | About Gardenate | Contact us | Privacy Policy

This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
We cannot help if you are overrun by giant slugs.