Well it’s spring…How do I know? The Robins have returned, the Geese have returned, the sun is shining, the snow is melting and ….after what always seems like a long winter, I just have to plant something. I’m easing into things with an easy project for children and adults alike.
My son grew the vines over the winter in his window, and it was amazing, I wish I had thought to take a picture, but alas, I didn’t, and he forgot to water them, and well… you can guess the rest. You’ll just have to take my word for it. So we’re starting over, but this is a great way to grow your greens any time of year.
Just go to the grocery store find yourself a skinny, long sweet potato, the best is one that’s already showing signs of sprouting, (although it doesn’t have to have sprouts). In my case I tend to not eat all my sweet potatoes and they sprout, so instead of composting them I use them for greens. Yes greens! They are a great source of dietary fiber, and contain Iron, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, Magnesium, Manganese, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium, Zinc and riboflavin. Phew that’s a long list, but what tops it off is there’s no greater feeling than growing your own food.
They don’t require much, just water, 3 toothpicks, and an old peanut butter jar, or if you want to get fancy a wide mouth canning jar. The wide mouth is important because the shoots and leaves need to be able to get up past the opening of the jar.
Here’s how it’s done.
Remember to change the water regularly so it doesn’t get yucky, place it in a sunny window, and enjoy watching it grow. It won’t be long before you can try your own sweet potato leaves.
You can steam the leaves or eat them raw; I suggest eating the small leaves they taste the best raw and are highest in Vitamin C from what I’ve heard. A little later I’ll show you how to cut the shoots and plant them and start your own sweet potatoes for the garden.
So grab a sweet potato, some toothpicks, a wide mouth jar and go to it! In no time you’ll have some little leaves to add to a salad.