Our sweet potato crop began as 'slips,' or cuttings that were mailed to us in a box in mid-June. We rushed to get the sad-looking pieces of sweet potato vine into the ground and kept them vigilantly watered. Sweet potatoes are easy to grow in warm temperate and tropical regions. They have few pests, and their vigorous vines (related to the notoriously invasive morning glory) quickly fill out the bed, suppressing potential weeds. Sweet potatoes are widespread in cuisines throughout the world, but are believed to have originated in Central or South America. Once dug, curing improves the taste, texture, and shelf life of sweet potatoes. Potatoes are on the dry, starchy side when first dug. Luckily, your kitchen is a great place to cure them. Just keep the sweet potatoes in an airy, warm spot for about ten days. Never refrigerate sweet potatoes! They are easily damaged by cold below 50 degrees. Sweet potato greens are also very edible and nutritious. They can be used like cooked spinach.