NEW HOPE, Ala. (WHNT) – David Freeman has been growing vegetables in his garden for 15 years, but this year’s harvest produced a special find: an 11-pound sweet potato!
The potato’s size far exceeds the average, measuring 12 inches high and 23 inches around. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports the average size of a sweet potato you find in the grocery store falls between three and nine inches long. The maximum weight is just over a pound.
David and his wife Kelly have lived in New Hope for two years. David is a pastor at Weatherly Heights Baptist Church in Huntsville, but in his free time, he cultivates his garden. Since moving to New Hope, he has grown peaches, plums, blackberries, strawberries, corn, eggplant, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, okra, green beans, peas, lettuce, collards, and more. He also takes care of a hive of honey bees.
Last year, Gov. Kay Ivey signed a bill naming the sweet potato Alabama’s official state vegetable. According to the bill, sweet potatoes provide the state with roughly $9 million of revenue annually.