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Louisiana State Vegetable

Sweet Potato

Sweet Potato Vine

(Ipomoea batatas)

Adopted in 2003

Louisiana designated the sweet potato as the official state vegetable in 2003. Sweet potatoes come in many varieties and are a highly nutritious, versatile food that tastes great. The sweet potato plant is a vine that trails along the ground. The flowers look like morning glories, which are in the same family as sweet potatoes.

Louisiana State Vegetable: Sweet Potato

Sweet Potato: Louisiana State Vegetable

Sweet potato, (Ipomoea batatas,) is a tender, warm-weather vegetable that requires a long frost-free growing season to mature large, useful roots. Sweet potato is native to Central and South America. It is one of the most important food crops in tropical and subtropical countries, where both the roots and tender shoots are eaten as a vital source of nutrients. Commercial production in the United States is mainly in the southern states, particularly North Carolina and Louisiana.

Sweet potatoes, which are related to the morning glory, grow on trailing vines that quickly cover the soil, rooting at the nodes along the way. "Bush" varieties with shorter vines are available for situations where space may be limited.

Though orange-fleshed varieties are most common today, white or very light yellow-fleshed types were once considered the finest types for sophisticated people. Some white-fleshed types are still available, though they may be hard to find outside the Deep South.

Louisiana Law

The law designating the sweet potato as the official Louisiana state vegetable is found in the Louisiana Statutes, Title 49, Section RS 49:170.11

TITLE 49 - State administration
RS 49:170.11 - State vegetable plant; state vegetable

Universal Citation: LA Rev Stat § 49:170.11

§170.11. State vegetable plant; state vegetable

A. There shall be an official state vegetable plant. The official state vegetable plant shall be the Creole Tomato. Its use on official documents of the state and with the insignia of the state is hereby authorized.

B. There shall be an official state vegetable. The official state vegetable shall be the sweet potato. Its use on official documents of the state and with the insignia of the state is hereby authorized.

Acts 2003, No. 857, §1.

Taxonomic Hierarchy: Sweet Potato

Kingdom: Plantae - Plants
    Subkingdom: Tracheobionta - Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta - Seed plants
    Division: Magnoliophyta - Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida - Dicotyledons
    Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Solanales
Family: Convolvulaceae - Morning-glory family
Genus: Ipomoea L. - morning-glory
Species: Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam. - sweetpotato


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