Did anyone order from Duck Creek Farms? If so, have you received your sweet potato slips yet?
I ordered May 5 and got them May 8.
I ordered mine on May 9 and haven't received them yet either. I know the web-site said the late cool temps had set their company back a bit.
I've been checking my mail box every day because with these hot temps back, those slips could fry in one day!
I ordered mine in February.
I ordered a couple of weeks ago. At the time I heard back almost immediately from Gary asking if I was in a hurry to get them because he was at an incredibly busy point in the season. I told him that I wasn't in a hurry at all and to take his time with filling my order if he needed to because I didn't need them right away. My sweet potatoes are going into a bed that still has broccoli plants in it, and likely I won't be through harvesting all the broccoli until this weekend or even next week. I know that had I told him yes, I was in a hurry, he would have dropped what he was doing to get my order in the mail because that's the kind of person he is. Like all farmers and horticulturalists, his business is weather-driven and late cold puts him behind on getting things to a certain size for shipping.
If you need them ASAP, if you e-mail Gary and let him know, I'm sure he'll do what he can to get yours into the mail. The last 2 weeks have been really busy for him (as they always are at this time of the year) and I am sure he's working hard to get all the orders out. He generally sells at markets and festivals on the weekends, and that cuts into the time he has for pulling orders, packing and shipping.
Quailhunter, I imagine you'll be getting them soon, and the quality of his slips is so good that they are worth the wait.
Paula, This might be the first time that you could get fried sweet potatoes before you even plant them. : )
Maybe he'll get the slips in the mail and they'll arrive during next week's cooler and moister weather---if the forecast for rain is correct.
I know a lot of you folks on here use him, so I wanted to ask on here. Not in a big hurry, but would like to get them in the ground pretty soon. Just wanted to make sure I wasn't the only one that hasn't received them yet. It's my last item to plant.
They'll probably show up right as my garden is flooding on Monday and Tuesday.
I never had any correspondence at all from him. They just showed up one day. I wouldn't normally like that, but since it was so quick and they were such great quality, I guess it's okay. I just figured he was busy.
It may depend on which varieties and how many you ordered. I didn't order very many.
I did not order from Gary, but maybe I should have. I was not planning on planting sweet potatoes this year until my kids said they would dig them. I tried to buy slips locally and could not find any. I did get some Bonnie plants (only planted 22). I had told myself that I would never plant, plants again, but I did anyway. The cold wet weather we had seemed to make them very unhappy. The ornamental slips I started at home already look better than the plants I bought. I expect all will produce when they get through pouting.
I've ordered from George's Sweet Potatoes the last several years and have been pleased. I always plant a compact variety and wanted to try that Cordner's Red so I ordered from him this year.
I can easily see how one who produces slips can get overwhelmed. If an order seems late I'd just do like Dawn said, and drop Gary an e-mail. He probably does 100 times more than do I.
Some varieties are easier to sprout than others. Some are more prolific. I doubt anyone producing slips can 100% anticipate demand (or lack thereof) for specific varieties. I bet it would be really fast, if one simply ordered 25 of "whatever you have handy!"
I received Cordner's Red from Gary. This year I pulled a good many slips and sold them, besides planting for myself. But the roots seem to have quit sprouting at this point. I imagine it doesn't help that some chicken(s) decided to peck holes in my roots (just Cordner's Red).
Well, I emailed yesterday morning and haven't heard back yet. Hopefully, they're on the way. I'm ready to plant them.
I'm a bit concerned because he's showing that the variety I ordered in February is sold out.
Usually he keeps track and fills orders in the order he received them, so I am assuming he has the ones on hand to fill your order. Otherwise, I think he would have emailed that he was sold out and would have asked if you had a preferred substitution. That's my best guess of what he would have done. He's a one-man operation, as far as I know, and always is swamped at this time of the year.
Did you receive your sweet potato slips yet? I hope so. Mine arrived today. I am so happy to have them.
These are the ones I'm planting this year: Allgold, Barkerman, Becca's Purple, Bradshaw, Bugtussle, Georgia Red, Purple Delight, Razorback, and Red Wine Velvet.
I notice that duck creek farms is still selling sweet potato slips through the coop. Our next order won't be picked up until June 19. Would that be too late to plant?
No, that's a fine time to plant. I've planted as late as July 18 and obtained decent results.
Probably not. It just depends on when the first frost is. I have gotten a good harvest from June plantings before. In fact, I rarely plant mine until June because usually I am having to wait for a cool-season crop to finish up so that I can use that crop's space for the sweet potatoes.
Different varieties have different days-to-maturity, so you'd have the best chance with some of the "early" varieties that produce sizable sweet potatoes about 90-100 days after planting. There are some varieties that take at least a month longer than that.
From a late planting, you'd still be likely to get a decent harvest. It might be smaller than usual if the weather cools off early in the fall, but it still would be worth having.
My average first freeze of fall generally is in late October through mid-November, so late October would be roughly 120 days after late June....your first freeze of fall may be earlier than mine, but probably only by a week or so. That gives you good odds on getting sweet potatoes from a late planting.
MINE CAME TOO!!!!
I was too getting worried. In fact, carsonsmimi was at K&K today and let me know they still have a few left although she said they look a bit worse for the wear. She's on the list at TLC for when they get their shipment but ...Hey Carsonsmimi! I got some!!!...And maybe too many. ha! Gary added several extra slips to each bundle.
I'm off to check out Ringlings Porto Rico and Bradshaw, which are the short season slips Gary picked for me. I also received Beauregard (good Ol' Reliable) and Purple Delight.
P.S. - for anyone in the K&K area....just fyi - word is K&K is stocked with lots of goodies! Several flowers jumped in carsonsmimi's cart.
"worse for wear" or beat up, etc. most slips will quickly recover and grow in this kind of weather. I know, when I send out slips, if I pull an "ugly" I usually don't count it, though I include it in the bundle. Yet, when I pull slips for my own garden, I do count the ugly ones, as they work as well as the nicer looking ones.
I've ordered slips from Sandhill Preservation and received a number of tiny slips, in addition to the normal sized ones, which could have met the order number themselves. I planted all of them and those tiny slips did great.
I know this can be a heated subject and I don't want to start another "avoid the big box stores debate, but in case anyone can't find a local source of slips, home depot in Midwest city had lots of decent looking Beauregard sweet potato slips yesterday.
Krista ( who really does go out of her way to support the local folks)
Krista, that shouldn't occasion a debate. Beauregard is a good variety. Those "slips" should work just fine. I say "slips" as I assume they are actually plants in potting mix, like they sold here in Tahlequah, at Lowes. That works. I would, however, recommend that sweet potatoes started from little plants with roots be more pampered when first planted. They seem more prone to transplant shock than those planted without roots or with just the start of some roots.
Received them last Friday, but it's been too muddy here to plant them. Calling for rain all weekend too. I'll get them in when I can. They're in the windowsill and are starting to sprout the new leaves. I was hoping to plant them this afternoon, but we had storms move through this morning.
I sure wish I had received them earlier in the month when I had plenty of good planting conditions. Looks like late next week will be my best bet. Really frustrated.
Quailhunter, that is frustrating! But im sure you'll get them in the ground soon! Mine were planted a month ago, but yesterday i stumbled over raised soil right next to one of my beds with sweets in there. To my horror, i immediately noticed the raised path of soil running willynilly through that entire bed. It appears to be mole activity judging by the tunnel just below the surface but im concerned it may be gophers which will devour all my potatoes.
Apparently i planted in the one raised bed without a wire bottom. Im praying a mole is under there at least helping out with my insane grub problem otherwise my family will be settling for store bought sweet potatoes this year..
Thanks! Somehow I though "slip" was not the right word. I am still going to get mine from duck creek via the coop. I don't think I've ever seen a real slip....I am anxious to get my hands on them!
Quailhunter, I'm glad yours arrived. It is unfortunate that the rain arrived first. You could just pack up all that excessive rainfall and send it to us because we are really dry here, and I am forgetting what mud is.
Krista, I agree with George. To me, your Home Depot is local too. Does it not hire local residents to work in the store? Of course it does, and those big box store employees spend their money right there where they live and work too. While I, too, support buying locally from places like Duck Creek Farms, I also feel like the big box stores are a vital part of our economy and we need to support them as well.
Sweet potato slips are not always easy to find, so I think that when a retailer goes to the trouble to order them and make them available to gardeners, we should support them too, whether they are a little neighborhood feed-n-seed store or a big box store or a vendor selling slips at a farmer's market or a garden festival.
Alexis, I hope it is a mole too and not a vole or gopher. For years and years I didn't have a vole problem in the garden, but since 2011, they have been worse and worse every year. This year I planted potatoes and sweet potatoes only in beds lined with hardware cloth, and before planting time next year, I want to add hardware cloth to the bottom of more raised beds, even though it will be a ton of work to dig out all the soil in order to reach the bottom of the bed and add the hardware cloth. I'll never again build a raised bed of any kind for any purpose without lining the bed with hardware cloth. I have learned my lesson.
Hope everyone gets the rain they want out of this system. Don't get me wrong...we need it and I'm not complaining. We're just getting it all at once. I've had over 6 inches of rain in the last 10 days and it has fallen in 3 rains for the most part. That's Oklahoma for you.
Do you guys always plant your slips on a raised or ridged row? I've raised a row the last several years. I could probably get them in if I didn't have to rake soil up into a raised area. Can't really work it now. I could go stick the slips in the ground. I tilled it last night. I may end up just doing that and hoping for the best.
Well, I got tired of worrying about it so I went to Home Depot and bought 20 bags of topsoil and made a nice dry raised row in my garden for the potatoes. Sometimes you just have to take matters into your own hands. Sweet potatoes are in the ground.
QH - my hat's off to ya. I got mine before you and they're STILL in jars in the kitchen window. By the time I get off work, run a few errands, make the 50 minute commute home, get supper on the table and then cleaned up....the best I can do is water. Sometimes not even that.
But the weekend is close and I'm buying dirt...for my 100 gal. water troughs...and its SWEET POTATOE PLANTING, BABY!!!
Yep, that's my story and I'm sticking to it. Please keep us (me) posted on how yours do? These things determine where/what I buy next garden season.
Can anyone advise me how much water sweet potatoes need? Is it the usual 1" per week? They were growing kinda slow until it rained. I have them planted in mounds about a foot high.
Quailhunter, That is Oklahoma rain for you. We needed rain desperately in 2009 following the drought of 2008-09, and we finally got rain--12.89" in one 24-hour period, following by another 9 inches over the next 4 to 6 weeks. It was too much rain at one time and my garden struggled immensely with water-logging even in raised beds. I don't know why we go months with no rain and then get too much at once, but it always seems to happen.
I did not always plant on a ridged row in the past. We have one area of sandy/silty soil at the west end of the garden that drains incredibly fast and I planted at grade level there. That was well before voles discovered the garden. Now I can only plant them in raised beds lined on the bottom with quarter-inch hardware cloth to keep the voles out. The beds are about 16 or 18" tall, so the sweet potatoes have plenty of deep sandy loam soil in which to grow without me worrying about voles devouring them.
If your soil drains well, you might be able to get them planted without ridged rows, but it is a risk. What if the rain keeps falling and falling and falling?
Paula, I hope you're able to get those babies in the ground soon!
Bon, Their water needs are fairly low and they'll get by on less than an inch a week---but I like for them to consistently get that inch per week in hot weather, when possible. Be careful not to overwater them or they'll crack. You don't want to irrigate them in that last month before digging them if you can avoid it.
They also don't need very much fertilizer, particularly nitrogen, as it will give you tons of lush foliage instead of potatoes.
I agree with Dawn. Last year was the first time I tried planting any without making quite a high ridge.. Those which I planted at ground level were from the variety Grand Asia, and they did quite well. I have no idea if variety makes any difference for this. Last summer we planted ours with drip irrigation, under black plastic. For all the heat and drought, I only used the drip irrigation, perhaps four times. Like Dawn, however, when we get into the really hot weather, I like to water mine. Otherwise, they stop growing during that time, and when the rain comes, they start up again, cracking as they do.
I have to say that I have become increasingly fond of sweet potatoes, the longer I live in Oklahoma. They are about as good a crop, for our climate, as you can get. Only okra seems to rival them,... or cowpeas. But being so different, I just plant them all!
Thanks all. I'm giving my sweet taters free roam (until my own voles show up). Anything that likes it here is welcome. Except squash bugs. I put in a vacate notice for them.
Well, what a flop. After receiving my sweet potatoes almost a month late, I got them in the ground. All of them are dying.
I have been planting sweet potatoes for six years and have never had a slip die after planting. I planted Cordner's Red for the first time and I guess I'll be going back to my old standbys....
Definitely a big disappointment in more ways than one. Hope you guys have had more luck with yours.
Quailhunter, I'm sorry to hear that. I hope you contact Gary and let him know what has happened. I believe he'd want to know that your sweet potato slips have not performed in a satisfactory manner.
I planted mine and all of them are fine so far (knock on wood), but I didn't have Cordner's Red, and I didn't have nearly as much rain as you did, so mine haven't had to deal with really wet soil.
I did have sweet potato slips die in the ground one year shortly after I planted them, but it was one of the rainiest years we have had since moving here, and I planted them during the rainiest part of that year so I wasn't terribly surprised that they didn't make it. That must have been 2007 and I planted them in the only open spot I had left, and it didn't drain well enough and I kinda suspected it wouldn't. I had to put them somewhere though, and I also thought the rain would stop falling, and it didn't.
QH, I am sorry to hear about your sweet potatoes. I planted Beauregard and some ornamentals, all seem to be doing good.
I wont brag on my sweet potatoes but I will brag on my gardening buddy. My two youngest grandchildren are twin boys, one of which came to help Papaw get the garden cleaned up.
Here is a picture of my Beauregard and a few of the others, along with the veggies we gleaned from an over grown garlic bed.
Larry, What a fine looking young man you have there, and the garden looks great too!
Your sweet potatoes are further along than mine, which I planted kind of late.
You have some wonderful grandchildren and I think you're passing a love of gardening on to them, which is such a wonderful gift. I have wonderful memories of my grandfather and his garden from the 1960s and 1970s when I still was too young to understand how hard he worked to have a beautiful and productive garden. Those are such precious memories to me.