Sweet Potatoes


Old 10-06-02, 09:40 AM
Lil' Gardener
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Sweet Potatoes

Something is eating my uncle's sweet potatoes as they start to emerge above the ground right before digging. Any suggestions as to what it might be?!
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Old 10-06-02, 08:13 PM
marturo's Avatar
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Posts: 1,448
Please describe damage.

Hi Lil' Gardener,

That's no good, you don't need anything but you & your family eating those Sweet Potatos.

Will you describe the nature of the damage? Bite marks, poop color & size, vine or tuber damage...

I know that there is a pest for everything; however I am a little surprised. I was saying the other day, how I wished everything was as imune to pests as our Sweet Potatos are.

If you will do a search, on google.com for Sweet Potato pests, and see if you can find pictures of the damage for us. Perhaps one of our Gardeners, has an answer for you.

When we deal with Pests, it is important to remember that many times we have to decide what is bugging us by the signs it leaves behind. More so because, you are our eyes since we can not be there.

Old 10-08-02, 09:19 PM
Lil' Gardener
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The bite marks are really big, not like a mouse. No poop tracks and eating only the tubers. Thanks for responding. What do you [email protected]!
Old 10-09-02, 11:06 AM
marturo's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 1,448
Smile Big bites.

Well if I had to venture a guess & I do.

I would say you may have a Ground Hog.

For those of you who are growing Sweet Potatos for the first time. Here's how we harvest them on The Lucky Horseshoe Farm.

At the end of october here the weather man calls for a first frost, we cut the tops off and cover the cut spot with a little straw/newspapper etc.

By cutting the tops off we can be sure that the Potatos will not rot in storage. In the next few days we will dig not wash & set the potatos in the sun to dry on both sides.

Now this means, we have grown this plant to it's longest day, & kept the tops from frost damage. Then removed the potatos, dried them & wrapped them each in newspapper, all inside of 3 days.

Then store them where a human would be comfortable for winter, & use them as you need them. They will not do well under 60 degrees in storage.

Lil' Gardener said:
Something is eating my uncle's sweet potatoes as they start to emerge above the ground right before digging.

Since we have to dig down at least 8 inches to get our potatos I gon't understand, what this emerge above the ground is about.

If any Gardener knows about this method, please let us all know. I only say Ground Hog because, we had some drying sweet potatos eaten back many years ago, when we left them out overnight, because it was not going to frost. The Ground Hog was delicious, with a ring of Sweet Potatos the next evening Waste not want not.

You need do no more than let them dry on both sides the next sunny day then store them. We have left them in ground, for as long as 2 weeks safely, before we got that sunny day. Then dig, dry, wrap & store.

So unless anyone knows of a method where the tubers protrude above ground prior to harvest. That's my best guess as to what is eating them.

We do know it's an animal & not a bug that must be eating your Sweet Potatos however.

I would reccomend you dig, dry, wrap & store now, as 1 Ground Hog can do a lot of damage in 1 night.

Hope this helps you save your crop.


Last edited by marturo; 10-10-02 at 03:41 PM.

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