Sweet-Potato Growing in the Cotton Belt



Source of Digital Item

National Agricultural Library


The sweet potato is one of the most important food crops grown in the South, and the acreage could be greatly increased without reducing the unit value of the crop. Thousands of southern farmers do not have enough sweet potatoes for home use throughout the year, and very few of the small cities and towns in the South have a continuous or sufficient supply. The small cities of the West and Middle West are not supplied with sweet potatoes except for a period of a few weeks during the autumn. With the extension of the modern methods of storage which are being employed in some sections of the South all of these markets could and should be supplied.

The sweet potato is in demand for canning, and thousands of acres could be used for this purpose. Within the past few years there has been a great demand for canned sweet potatoes, and up to the present time this demand has not been satisfied. Canners have contracted for sweet potatoes at 35 to 40 cents a bushel delivered at the canning factory. When the crop is sold to canners the outlay for packages is very small, as the containers are usually returned, and as the sweet potatoes are hauled direct to the factory there is no additional transportation charge.

Besides growing sweet potatoes for human food thousands of acres could be profitably grown for stock-feeding purposes. The quantity that can be used profitably for this purpose is limited only by the number of animals to be fed and the amount of other feeds available. All classes of live stock will eat sweet potatoes, but their greatest value is as feed for hogs and cattle. Dairy cows can be fed sweet potatoes without danger of injuriously affecting the flavor of the milk.


Sweet-Potato Growing in the Cotton Belt