PPDL Picture of the Week

October 31, 2016

Ornamental Sweet Potato Tuberous Roots: Edible But are they Palatable?

Rosie Lerner, Extension Consumer Horticulture Specialist, Purdue University

Ornamental sweet potatoes are quite popular as trailing plants for containers and annual ground cover in the landscape. Breeders select ornamental cultivars based on attractive foliage, not for edible quality.  So while the tuberous roots of the ornamental cultivars are “edible”, they are likely not of the same quality flavor and texture as those selected for eating.   Also note whether those grown as ornamentals have been treated with pesticides that would not be labeled for use on edible sweet potatoes, though typically not a problem in the home garden. 

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Figure 1