Science Fact: Difference Between Sweet Potatoes & Yams

Although sweet potatoes and yams are both flowering plants (angiosperms), they do not have a botanical relationship.  Here are some facts from the Library of Congress:

  • Sweet potatoes have two embryonic seed leaves (dicot).
  • Yams have one embryonic seed leaf (monocot).
  • Sweet potatoes come from the Morning Glory family (Convolvulacea).
  • Yams come from the Yam family (Dioscoreaceae).
  • Sweet potatoes can be either firm or soft.  The soft variety is what we call “yams” in the United States.
  • Yams are starchier and drier than sweet potatoes and are native to Africa and Asia.

Firm sweet potatoes were introduced in the U.S. before the soft variety.  When the soft variety became available, they were called “yams” to differentiate between the two types.  Today, the USDA requires that potatoes with the label of “yam” also have “sweet potato” on the label because they are really sweet potatoes and not yams.

Now Featuring: Make a Candy Corn Wreath

Credit: Free pictures from acobox.com
Christi at Frugal Novice made the cutest Candy Corn Wreath with her two little boys.  She found this project  from Women’s Day.  This is an excellent craft project for a family or for a class. If this is done with a class, two or three students could come up at a time and glue on their candy corn. Be sure and have extra candy corn for nibbling!

(By the way, Christi just happens to be our daughter, and the two little boys just happen to be our adorable grandsons!)

Constitution Day, September 17

Credit: Free pictures from acobox.com
The Constitution begins with three famous words, “We the people,”  and was signed on September 17, 1787  in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  It was signed by the Founding Fathers and because of the Constitution, we enjoy many of the rights and freedoms we have today.  Here are some interesting facts:

  1. The first national Thanksgiving Day was originally created by George Washington to give thanks for the Constitution.
  2. The U.S. Constitution is the oldest and shortest of all the national constitutions.
  3. Benjamin Franklin was the oldest delegate.  He was 81 years old at the time.
  4. When Pearl Harbor was bombed, the Constitution was moved to Fort Knox for safekeeping.  Now it is at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.
  5. There have been 27 amendments to the Constitution out of the more than 11,000 that have been introduced in Congress.

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