Growing healthy sweetpotato: best practices for producing planting material

Date released
16 May 2013
Publication Code

Sandra Dennien, Dorcas Homare, Michael Hughes, Jerry Lovatt, Eric Coleman and Grahame Jackson


Sweetpotato is a major food crop in Papua New Guinea, with about 2.9 million tonnes grown each year. But sweetpotato is prone to pests and diseases, particularly viruses, which can significantly reduce yields. Because there are no varieties known to be resistant to viruses, the next best solution is to produce planting material that is free from infection, and to make this readily available to growers. This manual is aimed at researchers and technicians, and describes how to test for sweetpotato viruses and to keep vines free from infection. The methods described should help locals in PNG and other Pacific nations produce disease-free planting material for sweetpotato and other root and tuber crops.