Organic Sweet Potato as a Commercial Crop in South Texas

Project Overview

FS17-299
Project Type: Farmer/Rancher
Funds awarded in 2017: $10,000.00
Projected End Date: 03/14/2019
Grant Recipient: Farmer
Region: Southern
State: Texas
Principal Investigator:

Information Products

Commodities

  • Vegetables: sweet potatoes

Practices

  • Crop Production: varieties and cultivars
  • Education and Training: demonstration, farmer to farmer, on-farm/ranch research
  • Farm Business Management: feasibility study
  • Production Systems: organic agriculture
  • Soil Management: Possible summer time cover crop for 9b region of south Texas.
  • Sustainable Communities: local and regional food systems

    Summary:

    There has not been commercial level production of sweet potato in south Texas for decades.  PPC Farms, an organic and conventional grower/packer/shipper of specialty vegetable crops in Mission, Texas conducted a one acre feasibility study of four varieties of organic sweet potato production.  PPC Farms’ project objective was to explore whether sweet potato can be successfully grown in south Texas during the excruciatingly hot summer months, extend the growing season for the local organic farmers, increase crop diversity and income. 

    Project objectives:

    Organic Sweet Potatoes In South Texas?

    The objective of the proposal was to explore if the soil and climate of the Lower Rio Grande Valley are suitable for sweet potato production, machinery used in local agriculture could be adapted to plant the crop, local irrigation method was adequate, observe weed pressure, pest pressure, and explore what kind of pests are present in the Lower Rio Grande Valley.  Region specific information and practices were to be gathered and explored. The field trial data was collected with the help of UTRGV students.

     

     

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.