Strangely, potatoes are sometimes overlooked when it comes time to grow a vegetable garden. Some people believe that potatoes are not worth growing because they are so cheap to buy. And what difference does it make in taste?
There are many ways to grow them, some quite unusual but all work.
This technique requires only some lumber, seeds potatoes, soil, and lots of love and care.
It is recommended to plant in April or August, and wait about three months for harvest. Here are some tips to help you use this method:
- You should cut the larger seeds potatoes into pieces and ensure there are at most two eyes in each plant.
- To prevent bacteria from forming, dust the pieces first.
- Apply 10-20-20 fertilizer at planting, and 2 additional times throughout the season.
- You should water in such a way as to keep your plants at a constant level of moisture.
- Avoid planting in the same place in consecutive years.
- You can make a small box to store your plants if you have limited space. As the plant grows, you can add sides to your box and fill the empty space with soil or mulch. You’ll be able remove the bottom boards and reach into the box to grab new potatoes.
2. Trash Bag Potatoes
It is almost foolproof to grow potatoes in a garbage bag. This can be done in just a few simple steps.
- Place your seed potatoes in a warm place for one week before you plan to plant them. They are ready for planting when they reach a size of one-quarter to one-half inch. Slice large seed potatoes into pieces that measure around 2 inches in width. Each piece should contain at least two sprouts. Allow them to rest at room temperature for three days.
- You can make drainage holes in the bottom end of a 30-gallon plastic trashbag using a pair scissors. The bag should be rolled down. Fill it with about one third of potting soil. You can then place the trash bag where there is full sun.
- To protect the potatoes seeds from fungal disease, sprinkle them with agricultural sulfur before planting. Place them in the soil with their eyes pointed up at least two inches below the surface. Make sure to water thoroughly.
- Add more soil and straw to your bag when the potato plants reach 6-8 inches in height. Keep growing your potato plants by unrolling your trash bag and adding soil as needed.
- The fun part is harvesting. When the leaves turn yellow, your potatoes are ready to harvest. You can stop watering at this point and let them dry for a few more weeks to allow the skins to harden. You can harvest the potatoes by slicing open the bag’s side.
3. Commercial Grow Bags
Commercial grow bags can also be used. They are made of heavy, dense polypropylene. They are usually more durable than trash bags and cost a bit more.
Simply place four pieces of seed potato in a bag and add a few inches of soil-compost mix. Then cover them with three inches of soil. Keep adding soil to the bag until it is full. You can harvest the bag by simply turning it upside down and dumping out the contents. The yield is often impressive considering the small area.
If you have enough space in your garden, this method is the best. Simply place the seed potatoes eight to twelve inches apart on the prepared soil. Cover them with about 3-4 inches of straw. Add a little straw to the stems once they reach eight inches in height. Keep doing this until your plants reach three feet tall. Once that happens, you will have a layer of at most one foot in depth.
5. Bucket Potatoes
Gather your supplies first:
- A bucket, preferably a 5-gallon bucket
- Pebbles or small rocks (aquarium pebbles are a good choice)
- Potting soil
- A black trash bag
- The seed potatoes
- To allow drainage, first add the rocks and pebbles to your bucket. To ensure drainage, cover the bucket with approximately one- to two inches.
- Place your trash bag in the bucket and open it up. Cut it to leave about an inch overhang. Use your scissors to cut the bag and place it on the floor. Make a straight line from the bag, then place it back in the bucket. Make about 20 drainage holes.
- After the trash bag is removed, add about four to five inches of potting dirt to the bottom.
- Next, add the potatoes to the soil by placing three of them in a bucket.
- You will soon have a crop of potatoes if you water them enough.
- Harvest time is when the leaves begin to turn yellow and the foliage starts to fall back.
All you need to do is:
- A 10-foot-long section of wire stock fencing or a similar strong wire fence
- The seed potatoes
- Make a 10-foot length of fence and roll it into a 3 foot wide cylinder. To keep the fence together, attach the ends to it with wire.
- Preparing your soil before you plant is important. You can loosen it and add a little fertilizer to get your potatoes started.
- You can plant your seed potatoes as you would normally.
- Now, place your wire hoops upright. Place them around the seeds potatoes that you have planted and keep them in line.
- Once your potatoes plants start to sprout, cover the fence with straw and add soil. You should not bury your potatoes. The soil should be only two to three inches high inside the cylinder.
- Cover your potato shoots with straw or leaves when they reach about a foot in height.
- Your plants will grow and you should continue to fill your cylinder with soil. They’ll need the extra soil to grow potatoes. They need plenty of water, enough to cover them completely, but not too much to drown them.
7. Potato Tire Tower
You only need soil, seeds potatoes, and tires.
- Place a tire in an area that receives at least seven hours of sunshine each day. The tire’s interior should be filled with garden soil up to the rim.
- Divide 2 seeds potatoes into thirds and ensure that each piece has a few eyes. Place the pieces along the tire’s inner edge with their eyes facing upward.
- Add another tire to the top and cover your potatoes with soil as they grow.
- Once your potato plants have reached the top of the second tires, it is time to add another one. Keep adding soil until the soil is completely covered.
- You can also add a fourth tire to your vehicle and carry on as before.
- Like the other methods, you can harvest your potatoes when the leaves turn yellow or die.