Growing Sweet Potatoes In Arizona

There have already been many innovations in farming and greenhouse gardening over the years for the sweet potato, making growing sweet potatoes in Arizona truly worthwhile. To grow the best, you must have the resources — like the greenhouse — and know information on the cutting, timing, and the number of potatoes you can get from a plant. 

Sweet potato has a very interesting history. The earliest harvests of this crop dated back from 750 B.C. in Peru, but the cultivation of sweet potato started in 1,850 B.C. When colonizer Christopher Columbus landed on the New World in the 1400s, sweet potatoes had established themselves as a popular food source in both Central and South America. 

Growing Sweet Potatoes In Arizona

These sweet potatoes are abundant in fiber and they also contain essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium, selenium, and iron. Plus, these are also perfect sources of Vitamins B and C.

This food source is identifiable with a texture that’s moderately stingy, comparable to a yam. The taste, as the name implies, is sweet but could be fresh when tried raw. Cooking the sweet potato even tastes better. 

How Do You Grow Sweet Potatoes In Arizona?

Growing sweet potatoes in Arizona involves dedication. According to a university in the state, the warmer regions of northern Arizona are perfect areas where you can grow the sweet potato. However, due to limitations, greenhouses are recommended to plant these crops right within your gardens. They belong to the morning glory or the Convolvulaceae family. 

There are two various types of sweet potatoes, and these are:

  • Soft-fleshed – Have orange and sweet flesh known as yams, but are farther from what sweet potato is today
  • Firm-fleshed – Notable for their light orange, light yellow, and white flesh homeowners can store for longer periods 

The soil required for these sweet potatoes must be moist, fertile, and nutrient-rich. Remember that you have to prepare the soil by adding in a maximum of six inches organic matter well-composted and a maximum of two pounds of fertilizer, all-purpose. Do not go overboard, because these must be added per every 100 square feet. 

Place the soil to its eight-inch depth, and rake the soil to provide a maximum of 10-inch tall raised beds for better drainage and root development. 

Growing sweet potatoes in Arizona entails that you know they are cultivated from cuttings in their stem. This means that they are grown from the root’s plant sprouts. 

You can encounter varieties grown from cuttings from the vine. If you require fewer plants, you may grow these from roots suspended in water containers with toothpicks. When you require more plants, you may arrange several roots from the sweet potato about an inch apart covered with approximately two inches of light soil or sand.

Then, begin adding two inches of sand at most as the shoots begin the sprout. Make sure that the bed soil is maintained on the moisture in the sprouting period, but avoid having them waterlogged. The temperature of the soil must be from 70 degrees to 80 degrees Fahrenheit. What are the things you must know more about sweet potatoes?

How Long Does It Take To Grow A Sweet Potato?

Sweet potatoes are ingredients to a variety of dishes. However, you may find yourself on a limited spree when you buy the potato from the grocery store. Aside from being pricey, you will always prioritize essential ingredients over crops of this kind.

It is why cultivating the crop right from your home with the greenhouse will save you with the money and the resources. Here are more tips to grow them right.

Initially, you can put these sweet potatoes inside a jar of water. Half of the sweet potatoes must be submerged in the water, leaving the rest set aside. Those underwater will be sprouting roots in the coming weeks while those above the water will grow the sweet potato slips or the sprouts. Should you find your crop a little bit skinny, then you may use a toothpick, just like how they are done in recipes, to keep them away from falling down. 

Store the jar with the potatoes inside where it is warm. The ideal temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The warmer the area, the better it would be. Many house owners want to place them in their dining room’s cupboard just beside their heat vent. Warmth over lighting is what these sweet potatoes are about.

Before they can grow “slips,” it may take a month-long or more, and you must always keep them in check once they have started to pop out. The sweet potatoes may also grow roots before they grow the slips so make sure to check on these as well. Depending on the “mood” of the potatoes, these will grow just from anywhere between a week to two months.

How Long Can You Keep Cutting Sweet Potatoes?

Keep your cut and cooked food sources in the refrigerator for up to seven days. Do not forget to use an airtight container to store these sweet potatoes within an hour after cooking. While they are hot, place them in the fridge should you want to immediately keep them after this.

A note though: Make sure that you label the storage container with the “made on” complete data to remind you of how long they will be good for. The last thing you want to happen is to encounter these sweet potatoes wasted from the gardening because you’ve missed on the storage time.

How Do You Grow Sweet Potatoes From A Sweet Potato?

Growing sweet potatoes in Arizona involves knowing the details about the steps to grow these. Sweet potatoes are among the last crops you will grow after tomatoes, peppers, and other heat-stimulated plants. The requirements — warm air and warm soil. 

Get started by warming the soil through layering black thermal plastic in the garden bed. A recommended material is biodegradable plastic out of cornstarch. Heat up the soil at 10 degrees, and begin planting the sweet potato slips two weeks at the most if you are not keen on utilizing this material. 

This leads us to the next and last question from the bunch: how many sweet potatoes do you get from one plant?

How Many Sweet Potatoes Do You Get From A Plant?

If you are looking at reselling these sweet potatoes so you can earn, or harvesting them so you can pursue them in the market nearby, you must know the number of potatoes you can grow from each plant. It also helps you in the layout of your greenhouses or gardens.

You can have eight or more tubers in a plant. Here are more of the steps:

  • Step 1: Begin with the sweet potato slips
  • Step 2: Root their slips
  • Step 3: Prepare the soil
  • Step 4: Start with the planting
  • Step 5: Water and take care

Grow Sweet Potatoes With Krostrade

Sweet potatoes and greenhouses go together to offer you the best results. With its North American and European markets, Krostrade.com is the online marketplace that provides the greenhouses you need to make growing sweet potatoes in Arizona always possible. Visit www.krostrade.com to learn more.

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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