Sweet potato- Planting activities
Sweet potato is propagated by vine cuttings. Cuttings obtained from the apical portion of the vine are used for planting. Around 7500 cuttings will be needed for an acre.
The time of planting for rainfed crop is June-July and September- October. And for irrigated crops it is October-November for uplands and January- February for low lands.
To obtain vine cutting, raise nurseries from selected tubers. About 32 kg of medium sized weevil free tubers (each of 125-150 gram) are required for planting in the primary nursery area (40 square meter to plant one acre).
Store the cut vines of sweet potato with intact leaves in bundles under shade for two days prior to planting.
Plough the field 2-3 times or dig to a depth 25-30 cm depending upon soil type to establish a deep porous field in which the vines are to be planted.
In the main field, plant vine cutting of 20-25 cm length on ridges 60 cm apart and at a spacing of 15-20 cm between the vines. The cuttings can also be planted on mounds taken at a spacing of 75 cm x 75 cm.
On the top of each mound, 3-6 cuttings can be planted. Plant the vine cuttings with the middle portion buried deep in the soil and the two cut ends exposed to the surface.
Ensure sufficient moisture in the soil for early establishment of the cutting. Provide adequate drainage and prevent water logging.
Lime or dolomite @ 1-3 kg per cent has to be applied in acid soils two weeks ahead of fertilizer application. Organic manure @ 40 kg/cent is recommended at planting time.
The first dose of fertilizers has to be applied at the time of planting.