Depending on the cultivar - and there are over 400 varieties - the sweet potato root matures in two to nine months. They are sown using vine cuttings, rather than seeds, and are easy to plant. North Carolina is the leader of sweet potato production in the United States (with California, Mississippi, and Louisiana fighting for a close second) and globally, China takes first place. While sweet potatoes are best known for their root, the leaves and shoots are also edible. In Korean cuisine, the sweet potato starch is used to make cellophane noodles and in South America, red sweet potatoes are combined with lime juice to make a dye for cloth.
Varieties of Sweet potatoes at the market
- Red yams
- White yams
- Yellow yams