sweet potato vine cuttings

Hollywog(z7soIL)October 31, 2005

I just got some cuttings of three different varieties of sweet potatoe vine. How should I go about rooting these? Right now, I dipped them in rooting powder, stuck them in water, and put them in a sunny location indoors. Is there anything else I need to do to them? Should I be rooting them in soil?

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geoforce(z7a SE PA)

Ipomoea (sweet potato) cuttings will root in just about any conditions, and hormone treatment is not needed. Water is fine, as is a soil or potting mix. These root in a very short time from 3 days to a week in water and are ready to plant out within 2 weeks or so. The decorative tricolor one is a bit finicky, but the black, green, or gold ones grow like gangbusters


    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 9:43AM
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Now, the black ones have flowers blooming on them--they are lavender. If I pollinate them by hand, would they produce a seed pod?

    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 11:01AM
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geoforce(z7a SE PA)

Not on a cutting, as there is not enough nutrition getting to the flower. On a plant they set seed easily and grow fine, like morning-glories which they are actually.


    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 11:59AM
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I had wondered about that--the morning glory part, anyways. Forgot about the cutting thing. I had asked once before on the seed saving forum if these produced seed and was told no, which seemed odd because everything (pretty much)needs a seed to start in the first place! Do the lime green vines flower as well?

    Bookmark   November 1, 2005 at 4:24PM
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In our zone it's best to save the potato (root). However I have tried twice and they died by spring both times (canna and calla are easier)

I have gotten the cuttings to root( inside)- in an effort to save for teh next summer- but then the spider mites attached them and I had to toss.

This year i didn't bother to buy them again. Good luck.

    Bookmark   November 5, 2005 at 8:50AM
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Jarka1(Czech republic)

I think I have got seet potato seeds - and got from them these plants - see attached link.

    Bookmark   January 4, 2006 at 1:59AM
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I think sweet potatoes are probably like any other potato, they would set seeds in a small fruit off the flower, and very infrequently. With culinary potatoes the seeds are never true to the cultivar and it might be the same. Most of these designer plants are propagated asexually in greenhouses, it's faster and more reliable.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2007 at 11:06AM
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I have some very good follow-up on the sweet potato vine propagation. I usually buy one of each color when they come out in the spring. As soon as the vine reaches about 4 ft in length, I take cuttings (tips with at least 2-3 leaf nodes, strip one set of leaves off...no hormone needed) and simply insert in a mason jar of water and just leave it under a shady bush in the garden. Within about 4-5 days, many roots can be seen in the jar. Pot them up quickly or the roots will be tangled and difficult to get untangled to pot up. If desired, they can be potted out right in the garden provided a little shade is given. I usually break off about 1 ft. tips off wild cherry trees and insert them in the ground close to my vines so as to provide shade. Yes the brush tips will wilt that day and die, but it doesn't matter so long as the potato vine is shaded. I also do my new tomato plants this way to be sure they are hardened off before receiving full sun.
A side note: My potato vines provided me with lots of potato tubers last fall. I dug them up, air dried them for a few days and then placed them in a large pot with shredded paper to insulate them from the cold. A couple weeks ago, I got one out (of the varigated cultivar) and placed the whole tuber in a glass of water. It began putting out shoots all over the tuber. Something very interesting has developed. Though the cultivar of potato vine was the purple/pink, green and white varigated one, the vines coming from the tuber are a solid medium green. This past week, I potted up the other tubers (also varigated) and the new shoots are now about 4 inches tall. They are also a solid green with a blackish/purple hue to them. These are in full sun everyday. Since these are vegetive propagations and not seed, one would expect to get the same exact cultivar. I am completely baffled as to why this is happening. Did something happen to make them revert? The vines are very pretty and I will still use them in the landscape, but really would have liked to be able to get the varigated variety that I thought would grow from the Varigata tuber. Another interesting fact...the Margarita tubers were a medium purple color and the Varigata tubers were a tannish color. One would think it would have been the other way around. Don't plan on eating the tubers if you are lucky to get some. They really, really stink...they emit a rather unpleasant odor and they are bitter as gall. Not an edible tuber as I have seen reported on some sites. I don't recommend them as food.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2008 at 12:34AM
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I'll concur that the dark purple ornamental sweet potato vine roots very readily. Haven't any experience with the chartreuse or variegated ones yet.

When I set cuttings to root, I always pinch out any flower buds, and pinch any that come along afterwards, as I want the plant's energies to go into building a root system, not flowers or seeds. Once I feel it's had a chance to develop a good root system, then I let it go on to flowering and setting seed/fruit.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2008 at 12:05AM
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karalyn(Z6 W. Boise)

Thank you for these tips!

    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 1:05PM
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