New colors, leaf shapes for sweet potato vine
Sweet potato vine is a popular, vigorous annual grown for its colorful foliage, attractive and varied leaf shapes (including lobed, heart-shaped, toothed and spade-like) and trailing, vining or creeping habit. The most commonly available colors are the lime-green 'Marguerite' and dark burgundy-black 'Blackie', but sweet potato vine comes in more than a dozen varieties. Plant breeders at N.C. State University have developed a new series, Sweet Caroline, which is currently available in several colors, including 'Sweet Caroline Bronze', which has coppery-bronze foliage that resembles autumn leaves, and 'Sweet Caroline Bewitched Purple', which has toothed, purplish leaves. The North Carolina breeders are working on a flowering version and several variegated varieties. The variegated 'Tricolor' (developed by a different breeder) has leaves of white, pink and green. For photos of many available varieties, visit www.provenwinners.com. Related to morning glories, sweet potato vines like full sun or partial shade and will thrive in a range of soil conditions.