Generally, You can grow the sweet potato crop for its sweet root tubers, and we mainly use it as food after steaming, boiling, frying, or cooking. Sweet potatoes cultivate as a starchy food crop in tropical and subtropical frost-free climate regions. In addition, due to its high caloric content, sweet potato is being used as animal feed. Sweet potato is known as Shakarkandi in India. Sweet potatoes are an important source of glucose, starch, industrial alcohol and sugar syrup. The sweet potato is native to tropical America and belongs to the family “Convolvulaceae”.
How to Sweet Potato Farming in India
Starting commercial sweet potato cultivation is easy and simple, just like growing other crops. Sweet potato plants are very hardy and strong, requiring less care and other handling. When you start growing any plant, you need to know the various essential sections that are useful for profitable cultivation. We can provide information related to the most reliable tractors in sweet potato cultivation. We can recommend the Swaraj 742 tractor, which is helpful in the complete cultivation procedure.
Sweet Potato Farming – Climate Requirement
Farmers grow sweet potatoes in warm tropical and subtropical frost-free regions with ideal temperatures of 21 °C to 26 °C. It requires well and evenly distributed 75 to 150 cm of rainfall for optimum production. Heavy rainfall will damage the crop and does not allow proper growth as excessive vegetation aids in tuber development. This crop needs plenty of sunlight for at least 5 months. It can tolerate drought conditions but not stagnant water. Temperatures and frost conditions below 10 °C will inhibit the growth of tubers. You can grow this crop up to 2200 m above sea level.
Sweet Potato Farming – Soil Requirement
When you cultivate the sweet potato, it requires well-drained sandy soil rich in humus for best tuber production. If the pH of the soil is less than 5.3, then it requires liming the soil. You should choose the less tuber size in case of heavy soils. For the best yield of the tubers, you should keep the soil’ pH between 5.7 to 6.7.
Sweet Potato Farming – Planting, Spacing and Seed Rate
Farmers can plant about 40 to 50 thousand vine cuttings in one hectare. You should plant the sweet potato vine cuttings from June to July for rainfed conditions. For summer crop cultivation under irrigated conditions, you should plant in the upland from October to November and in the lowland from January to February. One or two ploughings are done by 60 cm in the main field—25 to 30 cm at a distance of Make height meridians. The 20 to 30 cm long vine cuttings should bury horizontally with 2 to 3 bales under the soil, leaving the remainder on top of the soil.
Sweet Potato Farming – Manures and Fertilisers
As part of land preparation, add 25 tonnes of well-rotted manure to the soil. You should apply organic fertilisers in N:P:K in the ratio of 60:60:120 kg/ha. You should give the Full dose of 1/2 dose of ‘P’, ‘K’ at the time of planting. Apply the 1/2 dose of ‘N’ 1 month after sweet potato sowing.
Sweet Potato Farming – Irrigation
You should avoid excessive irrigation as it checks the yield by allowing more vegetative growth. The sweet potato crop requires less irrigation in the Kharif season. During Rabi and hot, dry season, 10-12 irrigations require at an interval of 8 to 10 days for higher production. However, be sure to have enough moisture in the soil 40 to 45 days after planting. The irrigation’s frequency depends on the moisture-holding capacity of the soil and climatic conditions of the area.
Sweet Potato Farming – Weed Control
As per the intercultural practices, you should take care of weed control, especially in the initial days. Farmers should follow earthing up after 2 weeks to 1-month planting and conclude the highest yield result. Once you grow the vines, weeds are automatically suppressed.
Sweet Potato Farming – Harvesting
Sweet potato maturity period ranges between 3 to 5 months based on the variety grown. You should be ready to harvest this crop in 4 months when the leaves turn yellow in colour. Use a fork or pick-axe to dig out the tuber from the soil.
Yield in Sweet Potato Farming
The yield depends on the soil type, variety and climatic conditions, along with good agricultural management practices. In sweet potato cultivation, 6 to 10 t/ha for rainfed crop and 12 to 15 t/ha under average management can be achieved.
When you want to get information about sweet potato cultivation, you should also know the equipment that will help to boost the yield. Cultivators, tillers and tractors are crucial factors in sweet potato farming. However, you can choose the Swaraj 855 tractor and many more tractor models in India.
For more information regarding sweet potato farming in India, stay tuned with us.