Q: When my husband dug up a sweet potato vine, he discovered a tuber. Is it a real sweet potato, and is it edible?

ó L.A., Warren

A: An ornamental sweet potato vine tuber is indeed a real sweet potato. The Alabama Cooperative Extension Service says the tubers are edible, but you probably donít want to eat them. Many people think they taste unpleasant or bitter. Besides, the plant may have been exposed to pesticides applied by you or the greenhouse that grew it, the extension service notes.

Youíre probably better off saving the potato in a cool, dark, dry place and planting it next spring. You can also try rooting it in a glass of water, the way many of us did when we were kids.

Have a question about home maintenance, decorating or gardening? Akron Beacon Journal home writer Mary Beth Breckenridge will find answers for the queries that are chosen to appear in the paper. To submit a question, call her at 330-996-3756, or send email to mbrecken@thebeaconjournal.com. Be sure to include your full name, your town and your phone number or email address.