How is the Chinese potato grown?

China potato

There are many types of vegetables, and one of the most curious is known as the Chinese potato. It is produced by a plant in the pumpkin family, and it is very easy to grow. In addition, it has a mild flavor, very easy to eat as the pulp is generally soft.

Do you want to know how you can enjoy it? Well, do not hesitate: then I am going to give you the keys to be successful with the Chinese potato.

Origin and characteristics

View of Sechium edule plantsView of Sechium edule plants

Image – Wikimedia / Forest and Kim Starr

It is a perennial climbing plant native to Central America whose scientific name is sechium for successalthough it is popularly known as potato of the air, chayota, guatila, citron, hedgehog or Chinese potato. It can reach a height of up to 15 meters as long as it has support, and it is a species with highly branched stems. The leaves are webbed, with 5 to 7 obtuse lobes with a slightly serrated margin.

The flowers are unisexual, and are grouped in inflorescences. The fruit is a berry up to 2kg in weightsolitary or in pairs, fleshy, indehiscent, which acquires a variable shape and size. The seeds are large, ovoid, smooth and soft.


  • Fruit: originally it is used as a replacement for potatoes, in soups, fried foods, etc.
  • Roots: they are edible, with a mild flavor.

How is it grown?

sechium for successSechium for success

Image – Wikimedia Commons / B.navez

If you dare to cultivate it, we recommend providing it with the following cares:

  • Location: it must be outside, with good light.
  • Earth: it must have very good drainage, and above all be rich in organic matter. For this reason, it is highly recommended to fertilize the land before sowing or planting, for example with cow manure or of chicken (The latter if you get it fresh, let it dry in the sun for about 10 days, otherwise, as it is so concentrated, it could burn the plants)
  • Irrigation: frequent, daily if necessary. The earth does not have to dry out.
  • Subscriber: throughout the season with organic fertilizers.
  • Multiplication: by seeds in spring (you can do it in winter if you have an electric germinator (like this one from here!) and thus advance the season a little).
  • Rusticity: it does not resist frost. In temperate regions it is grown as an annual.

What did you think of the chayota?

How is the Chinese potato grown?

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