purple sweet potato

author62(z6 Alaska)April 7, 2004

Hi Folks,

When I was in Hawaii recently, I had some purple colored sweet potatoes. Can anyone tell me what variety they are and where I might be able to get some starts?

Thanks,

RM

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Violet_Z6(6a)

You may get more responses if you post your question in the Vegetable Forum.

Your best bet may be from Hawaiian sources...

Here is a link that might be useful: purple sweet potato

    Bookmark   April 7, 2004 at 5:39PM
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OzarkGardener(z6 MO)

I found an interesting site on the web. It is the Sand Hill Preservation Center. They have many, many sweet potato varieties, including one identified as purple.
Hope this helps.
Christopher

Here is a link that might be useful: Sand Hill Preservation

    Bookmark   April 7, 2004 at 7:17PM
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hollyhocks(zone 5 Ohio)

Hi RM,

Like you, I love those purple sweet "Okinawan" potatoes from my dad's garden in Hawaii. Some useful info I read while at the Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture having some Cherry Blossom cuttings inspected to bring home. It's ILLEGAL to take the beloved purple sweet potato out of Hawaii!!! Don't ruin the environment! (information from the Hawaii Dept. of Agriculture)

Aloha,
Hollyhocks

    Bookmark   April 13, 2004 at 12:04AM
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dirt_dew(z9 az)

Which one?
White skin/purple flesh?
Purple skin/white flesh?
Purple skin/purple flesh?
VERY purple?
Other?
I had the white skin/purple flesh. Its very popular in Philippines.
1 didn't suvive the summer heat.
I don't know yet if the other 1 survived the winter frost.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2004 at 12:59AM
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author62(z6 Alaska)

Hi D-Dew,

Well the skin wasn't all that white, but I'd say just the flesh was purple.

It's an ingredient in a dish that I learned to cook while in HI. Seems any sweet potato will do, but the purple color makes all the difference in the world!

    Bookmark   April 14, 2004 at 1:12AM
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dirt_dew(z9 az)

Purple IS nice and the texture and flavor are special, too. Do you have an Asian market in your area?

    Bookmark   April 14, 2004 at 1:45AM
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author62(z6 Alaska)

Gosh, not even close! I live on an island in southeastern Alaska. I bet you can get anything where you are. I'm jealous.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2004 at 2:16AM
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OzarkGardener(z6 MO)

Here is a connection for some interesting information regarding the health benefits of purple sweet potatoes. Seems the Japanese are also enthusiastic about these.
This web page is very heavy reading, but interesting nevertheless.
Christopher

Here is a link that might be useful: Health aspects of purple sweet potatoes

    Bookmark   April 16, 2004 at 10:44PM
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dirt_dew(z9 az)

author62
My purple fleshed sweet potato is making a comeback. It has different shaped leaves than the white fleshed sweet potato with purple skin that is growing all around it. I hope I will have some purple fleshed tubers next winter. I can follow the leaves to dig up the color I want. I don't know if they produce seeds?
The white fleshed ones do not bloom.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2004 at 2:29AM
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murasaki

The sweet potato you a referring to is native to my home, Okinawa. Their exterior is like that of the North American/continental US sweet potato, but the inside ranges from a purple to a deep purplish-blue. I miss those sweet potatoes, but am trying to get the seeds.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2004 at 4:04PM
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fusion_power

I just dug my Okinawa sweet potatoes and was pleasantly surprised at the size of the tubers. This variety is difficult to grow in temperate zones because it requires a very long hot growing season of about 120 to 130 days. Please note that I specified "hot". I planted my sweet potatoes in early June and am harvesting them now in mid October. We had our first cool temperatures this week with a low of 60 degrees and a prediction of 45 degrees later this week.

The production potential with this variety is relatively low compared to other selections such as the popular Beauregard. I harvest 2 or 3 tubers per plant and the plants are 3 feet apart in the row.

I also grew the variety "Purple" and harvested some exceptionally good tubers. These have to be planted closer together to prevent them getting too large. I'm spacing them at 15 to 24 inches apart in the row.

Fusion

    Bookmark   October 13, 2004 at 7:32PM
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tropicaliste

Hey All,

Ube!! I have to agree it is one of the most popular flavors in the Philippines, as well as one of the top-selling and popular flavors of ice cream there and at my house. LOL. It just tastes so good. Go to your local asian grocery and look at the ice cream, you're sure to find it! Just wanted to share.

Thanks Ya' Guys!

    Bookmark   October 15, 2004 at 10:40PM
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author62(z6 Alaska)

ok you guys! Are you trying to make me jealous? But seriously, I really do miss those sweet purps. It's not something I can get here in Alaska. I bet it is an excellent icecream flavor. I've also had it jelly roll style which was really yummy. Just might have my sis send me some from Hawaii...

Ruby

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 11:13PM
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ChouCream(7B BC [PNW])

Are you able to grow sweet potato in zone 6? I though they always required rather long warm seasons to grow sucessfully?

    Bookmark   October 17, 2004 at 3:13AM
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author62(z6 Alaska)

ChouCream,

I was going to try growing some but have never been able to get some starts. For the most part we have decent summers w/ temps as high as 80. Plus in our area we have about 20hrs of daylight in the summer.

R~

    Bookmark   October 17, 2004 at 12:56PM
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Eggo(z10soCal LBC)

Purple flesh and purple skin potato. I ate some of these this summer. It seems that a lot of folks are growing them here in SoCal. I find it interesting to look at, how many purple vegetable are out there....?

    Bookmark   October 18, 2004 at 7:09PM
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fusion_power

You can find the Okinawa sweet potatoes at http://www.dorevaproduce.com/varieties.asp if you are interested in buying a case or two.

Fusion

    Bookmark   October 18, 2004 at 7:40PM
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honu(z11 HI)

Has anyone started Okinawan sweet potato (whitish/grayish skin w/ purple flesh inside) successfully from spuds from the supermarket? A master gardener at my local extension said to plant them whole, and not cut them up.
Is this correct? Does anyone know a source for seeds?
Also, do you know if this is winter hardy (for a mainland grower)?

    Bookmark   June 10, 2005 at 5:27AM
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Heathen1(10a)

I think I emailed Doreva and they don't carry it anymore. What do people do to keep them alive during the winter? just store them like potatoes?

    Bookmark   June 10, 2005 at 10:23AM
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Violet_Z6(6a)

Probably your best bet. Store them in soil with drainage in a pot, don't water except to keep them from completely dehydrating.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2005 at 5:10PM
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fusion_power

As an fyi, www.sandhillpreservation.com will carry Okinawa sweetpotato seedlings next year.

Fusion

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 12:39AM
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dirt_dew(z9 az)

Honu-
I just cut off about an inch at the end and push it into the soil. They do overwinter here in Phoenix.

    Bookmark   October 12, 2006 at 11:59PM
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chopinatwork_hotmail_com

Hello all,

I'm in Phoenix. I'm looking for the purple Okinawan sweet potatoes. I was able to find the white skin, purple flesh in Lee Lee supermarket (an asian supermarket). It looks just like the purple Okinawan sweet potatoes, but is it really the correct species???? These are the ones that come from Southern Cali. Thanks, all!

    Bookmark   November 17, 2007 at 5:49PM
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trg-s338

I have an "Ube" purple sweet potatoe from the Philippines that
I planted in a large pot with sand/steer manure mix three years ago. It grows vigorously onto a trellis for about 8 mos. then dies off in the deep of winter only to grow again at the next hint of warm weather approaching. This it does reliably for the past 3 years but never makes it to bloom. I am hesitant to dig it up this winter to check if it grew in size over that 3 year period and maybe use it as mother stock to propagate more. What are your thoughts on my plan to dig it up?

    Bookmark   December 10, 2007 at 4:04PM
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ydur07

trg-s338,

you have to dig it up once a year they usually produce a lot, its better if you plant them on the ground for a better results so it will produce more and bigger, once you dig it up just cut the top piece and put back on the ground for next year to grow, cover it up or mulch if it freezes in your zone. enjoy

    Bookmark   December 12, 2007 at 11:07AM
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ejm1949

I found a great source, reasonable, too for the Okinawan Sweet Potato!

Try http://www.mericlonelabs.com/

Just spoke to Debby there and she not only has slips for the Okinawan sweet potatoes, she also has other varieties of purples worth exploring, too!

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 12:37PM
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cairnsprops_hotmail_com

http://www.abc.net.au/rural/content/2008/s2448893.htm
The link is about a farm growing them near Cairns QLD.Aust.
They are beautiful to eat and bright purple when mashed.

Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.abc.net.au/rural/content/2008/s2448893.htm

    Bookmark   June 2, 2011 at 4:38AM
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