If you’ve ever had a homegrown potato, you recognize that they’re tons tastier than those you buy at the grocery. The flesh is crisp and therefore the flavor of homegrown varieties is great.
Potatoes are among the simplest vegetables to grow. they are doing well in most garden soils and that they are ideal for container gardening. In fact, growing potatoes in containers may be a good way to incorporate your children within the gardening process.
Almost any large container works well as a potato garden. While there are commercial “potato condo” containers and “Smart Pots” available for purchase, you’ll find many alternatives around your house. Old wooden barrels cut in half and enormous plastic flowerpots are ideal. Try an old bathtub. Some people use trash bags or stacks of old tires. If you select to use trash bags or tires, beware that the jury remains out on the topic of potential toxicity.
Good drainage is significant to raising a healthy crop of potatoes so make certain that the containers you select have holes to permit excess water to flee. Add some if necessary. it’s best if the soil stays moist, but an excessive amount of water will cause the potatoes to rot. attempt to keep the moisture at a uniform level. Inconsistent watering pot causes the potatoes to be misshapen.
Once you’ve chosen the acceptable container, place it in a neighborhood where it’ll get six to eight hours of sunlight each day.
Use a high-quality potting soil mix and add one shovel of pre-moistened sphagnum to every one cu ft of potting soil. Mix thoroughly and fill the potato container to about half full.
Next, add a timed-release fertilizer (read the labels to form sure the sort you select is suitable for potatoes) and blend it in. Water the soil thoroughly.
Now you’re able to plant the potatoes. There are many sorts to settle on from, including early harvest varieties like Arran Pilot, Swift, or Accent. Your climate and growing conditions will help determine the simplest varieties.
Experts disagree on the simplest thanks to preparing seed potatoes for growing. While most agree that tiny ones are often planted whole, master gardeners differ in opinion on what percentage eyes should be left with each bit. a secure rule of thumb is to chop the seed potatoes into pieces that contain two eyes.
Plant the potatoes pieces about four inches apart within the container in late spring. it’s best to possess about five inches of the soil underneath them. Cover the seed potatoes with one to four inches of soil. If you reside during a cooler climate, one to 2 inches is best. In warmer climates, three to four inches is sweet.
Give the container a radical watering. because the plants grow, it’s important to stay the soil moist without over-watering. an honest means of testing the water content is to stay a finger into the soil a minimum of an in. or two. Add water if the soil feels dry. you would like the water to run out rock bottom of the container.
Once the potatoes have six to eight inches of leaves protruding of the soil, you would like to start “hilling” them. this suggests you’ll add a few more inches of the soil and compost mixture after adding a touch more timed-release fertilizer. Be gentle when adding the soil so on not damage the plants. it’s okay to hide the lower leaves of the potato plants. you’ll need to repeat this step several times throughout the season.
The tasty fun begins when small blossoms appear. this is often a symbol that you simply can harvest some tiny potatoes. Gently feel around within the container and take away what you would like, but take care to not disturb the basis system.
Once the potato plants turn yellow and start to dry up, the remaining potatoes should have reached full size. the simplest thanks to harvest are to tug the plants out of the bottom.