Cracks in sweet potatoes - Knowledgebase Question

Gaithersburg, Ma
Question by kshoyle
June 30, 2010
Last year I had a great yield of sweet potatoes, but most were cracked. I waited to harvest until plants began to turn yellow. What should I do differently?


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Answer from NGA
June 30, 2010

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Cracking in sweet potatoes is usually an indication that the plants were subjected to fluctuating soil moisture levels when periods of dry soil were followed by excessive moisture. The best way to prevent this is to keep the soil as consistently moist as possible during the growing season. Some sweet potato varieties are more prone to cracking than others, so you might try less susceptible variety such as 'Jewel' if this seems to be a regular problem. The potatoes with healed over cracks are still edible. The slight yellowing of the sweet potato plants' leaves is an indication that they are ready to harvest.

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