New Sweet Potato Adds To Louisiana Mix

Linda Benedict  |  5/4/2005 2:10:47 AM

Mike Cannon, coordinator of the LSU AgCenter’s Sweet Potato Research Station at Chase, with boxes of seed stock of the new Bienville sweet potato variety.

The LSU AgCenter has released a new sweet potato named “Bienville,” which has resistance to root knot nematodes. It has been in trials as seedling L 94-96 in many locations in the sweet potato production areas of the state for the past few years and was commercially released for planting in May, said Mike Cannon, resident coordinator of the Sweet Potato Research Station at Chase. “It will possibly be a good variety for producers in Morehouse and Ouachita parishes,” Cannon said. “It grows well in the fine sandy loam soil there.” That’s also the type of soil root knot nematodes like. Cannon said because of limited seed availability, fewer than 100 acres have been planted with Bienville this year in Morehouse and Ouachita parishes, which will give producers a chance to see how well it performs. The sweet potato is almost identical to Beauregard. “It’s not meant to replace Beauregard, but it fills a niche,” Cannon said. “It doesn’t sprout as well as Beauregard and may not store as well.” Beauregard is a sweet potato variety released by the AgCenter in 1987. It has proved to be one of the most popular varieties ever.

Linda Foster Benedict

(This article was published in the summer 2002 issue of Louisiana Agriculture.)
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