The sweet potato
The sweet potato may be a dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the vine or vine family, the morning-glory family. Its large, starchy, sweet-tasting stem roots are used as a vegetable. The young shoots and leaves are generally devoted as greens. Cultivars of sweet potato are bred with up-to-date tubers with flesh and skin of varied colors.
Sweet potato is just distantly associated with the common potato (Solanum tuberosum), each being within the order Solanales. Although darker sweet potatoes are usually noted as "yams' ' in components of North America, the species isn't a real yam, that is monocots within the order Dioscoreales.
Sweet potato is native to the tropical regions of the earth. Of some fifty genera and quite 1,000 species of the morning-glory family, batatas are the sole crop plant of major importance and, some others are used regionally, however, several are toxic.
Description of the sweet potatoes
The plant may be a nonwoody perennial tracheophyte, bearing alternate simple or palmately compound leaves and medium-sized petalous flowers. The stems typically crawl on the bottom and type accidental roots at the nodes. The leaves are screwed on the stems.
The leaf stalk is five to twenty inches long. The leaf blades are terribly variable, five to thirteen centimeters long, the form is heart, kidney to oviform, rounded or triangular, and pear-shaped, the sting will be entire, toothed, or usually 3 to seven times compound, cut or divided.
Most of the leaf surfaces are blank, seldom bushy, and therefore the tip is rounded to pointed. The leaves are largely inexperienced in color, however, because of the buildup of anthocyanins, particularly on the leaf veins, they will be purple in color.
Reckoning on the variability, the overall length of a stem will be between 0.5, and four meters. Some cultivars conjointly type shoots up to sixteen meters long. However, these don't type underground storage organs.
Cultivation of the sweet potatoes
The plant doesn't tolerate frost. It grows best at a median temperature of twenty-four °C (75 °F), with ample sunshine and heat nights. Annual rainfalls of 750–1,000 millimeters (30–39 in) are thought-about most fitted, with a minimum of five hundred millimeters (20 in) within the season.
The crop is sensitive to drought at the tuber initiation stage of 50–60 days once planted, and it's not tolerant to water-logging, because it could cause tuber rots and scale back growth of storage roots if aeration is poor.
Depending on the variety and conditions, stem roots mature in 2 to 9 months. With care, early-maturing cultivars will be fully grown as Associate in Nursing annual summer crops in temperate areas, like the Japanese, the US, and China.
Sweet potatoes seldom flower once the daylight is longer than eleven hours, as is traditional outside of the tropics. they're largely propagated by stem or root cuttings or by accidental shoots referred to as "slips' ' that grow out from the stem roots throughout storage. True seeds are used for breeding solely.
They grow well in several farming conditions and have few natural enemies; pesticides are seldom required. Sweet potatoes are fully grown on a spread of soils, however well-drained, light- and medium-textured soils with a PH scale of four.5 - 7.0 are favorable for the plant.
They will be fully grown in poor soils with very few chemicals. However, sweet potatoes are terribly sensitive to atomic number 13 toxicity and can die within six weeks once planted if lime isn't applied at planting during this variety of soil.
Production of the sweet potatoes
In 2020, the world production of sweet potatoes was eighty-nine million tonnes, with semiconductor diode by China with fifty-fifth of the planet's total (table). Secondary producers were African countries, Tanzania, and the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Nutrient content of the sweet potatoes
Sweet potato cultivars with dark orange flesh have a lot of carotenoids (converted to a better A content once digested) than those with achromatic flesh, and their increased cultivation is being inspired in Africa wherever A deficiency may be a serious ill-health. Sweet potato leaves are edible and may be ready like spinach or greens.