Here's an interesting and fun indoor project, that can be shared with your children/grandchildren!
At the supermarket, select a sweet potato that will fit in a see-through container. (A canning jar works nicely.)
Position the potato, so about two-thirds of it is down in the jar. You may need to insert 2-3 round toothpicks into the potato at the jar rim level, so the potato can "sit" in place. (See Photo).
Fill the jar halfway or more, with water. Now, everyone can watch as within a matter of weeks, the potato roots in the water. Keep adding water, as needed, and then vine sprouts will appear on top. Once the vine begins to grow, it is fascinating to see it daily. And it is pretty, too!
By Maggie from Park Hills, MO
A neat project but remember sweet potato leaves are poisonous so be sure to teach kids not to eat them. If the kids are very young, err on the side of safety and wait until they can understand that sometimes plants can have dangerous parts as well as safe parts. (07/03/2008)
Potato leaves may be toxic, but sweet potato leaves (Ipomoea batatas) are not. The tender leaves are eaten as delicacies in Indonesia and the Philippines, and are sold in Asian stores. They are in the USDA food database. For nutritional information, raw are #11505. Bon appetit! (07/07/2008)
Hi Maggie; Just yesterday I was looking at a sweet potato in my cupboard that has sprouted eyes. I was thinking of planting it in a large flower pot to see what comes up, but after seeing your post have decided differently. I will place it in the water as you posted and both my daughter and I can enjoy watching it grow. Thanks for the post.
We did this as a kid, thought it was "cool" to grow something from a jar. Thanks for the memories! (07/17/2008)
The leaves are NOT toxic and are very edible. Stir fried is an excellent way to cook them. It is a common dish in Taiwan, with olive oil, garlic, and salt, yum. (12/03/2008)
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