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Old October 3, 2021   #5
JRinPA
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: SE PA
Posts: 892
Default Sweet potato disaster here!

Our plot at the comm garden was not successful. Well, box #1, the 9x5, was not. The 4x4 is still unchecked. I plan to dig it today.

The 9x5 had 1/2" hardware cloth tacked onto the bottom, and also about 15" high above the boards. A fortress impenetrable by voles.

YEAH RIGHT! The damage was biblical. May as well call that bed Jericho.

I think they climbed right up the vines. I found two current nests, 6 newborns and 5 with hair and eyes open. Two other nesting/bedding areas. The sweet potatoes were mostly split or eaten away.

I planted Lehigh potatoes in that same bed, as an afterthought, one foot along the long edge where the black plastic did not cover. Those did great and were only eaten a little. Those voles love their sweet potatoes.

I'm thinking next year, a setup like yours with a trellis, but maybe with fabric pots elevated. Maybe bench legs from EMT so they can't be climbed. It will be a pain to water, though.

Question - what makes sweet potatoes split? Too dry, then too wet, just uneven watering?
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