The potato (Potato) belongs to the Solanaceae family, the same botanical family of tomatoes and aubergines, whose tubers are the most consumed and at the same time the most cultivated food in the world. Potato is the botanical name of the common potato, a very popular food in the kitchen, so much so that it makes you wonder when and how to plant potted potatoes. Potato cultivation does not necessarily require a large green spacesince they can be grown in pots and have them on the terrace or balcony.
These are one of the most popular vegetables in the world, especially in Europe and North America. They are easy to grow, can grow in a variety of soils, and require little water.. This food contains phosphorus and potassium and is easily digested. They can be grown throughout the year, the important thing is to avoid low temperatures: around zero, the plants die. They are watered regularly at night.
Materials for planting potted potatoes
Potatoes are a healthy food that can be grown practically all year round under the right circumstances. Potato planting in containers reduces both the area required and the danger of pests and diseases. Since potatoes grow underground and require a lot of space, all that is required is a large, sturdy pot.
When it comes to planting potatoes, you have to know which ones to plant and when. There are many types of potatoes to choose frombut they are normally divided into five groups according to the harvest season: early, new, mid-season, main and late. Knowing which group your potatoes belong to can help you choose when to plant and harvest them.
- The early ones should be sown already in February and harvested in May.
- The new ones are planted in March, a few weeks after the precocious ones, and they are harvested in June or July.
- The mid-season ones are planted in April and harvested in August or September.
- The primary variety is planted in mid-spring, around May or June, and harvested in the fall.
- The late varieties are planted in July and harvested in November or December.
It is important to choose a large pot. A potato plant needs a container with a capacity of about 10 liters to grow well. The bigger the pot, the better the plant grows. Make sure the pot has lots of drainage holes. The potato tuber rots if it is left to soak for a long period of time, so the water must be able to come out every time it is watered. If the pot or container you choose doesn’t have holes, poke two or three holes in the bottom.
It is also convenient that the land is prepared for planting. Your tubers will receive nutritional support rich in organic matter from a mixture of equal parts of potting soil and compost. A few handfuls of compost can also be added. Manure, bone meal, fish meal, or algae are examples of organic fertilizers.
How to easily sow potted potatoes
Cover the bottom of the pots with shards (chunks of clay) or small rocks. These materials help to drain the water and prevent it from remaining in the soil for a long time.. Fill the container with 10-15 cm of the prepared soil, such as this. Press lightly with your hands to make sure it is compact and solid enough to prevent the potatoes from sinking as they gain weight.
In the pot, place the tubers. Most of the shoots should be oriented upwards. Leave ample space between each tuber and avoid cluttering the pot. A 30 cm diameter container should only fit three tubers as a general rule. 10 to 13 centimeters of soil should be used to cover the potatoes. Use your hands to press down on the substrate hard enough, but not too hard, so as not to crush the tubers. Water lightly. The soil should be moist to the touch, but not soggy.
How to care for potted potatoes
You have to leave the tubers in a cool and dark place. A closet or storage room in the basement is fine. Put them in an egg carton or other container to keep them upright and come back every day to check if they are sprouting.
When they do, you can plant them in a pot with substrate for urban garden. The potatoes should sprout a maximum of 2,5 cm at the beginning. Ideally, the container should be 45-60 cm deep. Keep the potatoes constantly watered. You can usually feel the moisture level by dipping your fingertip into the dirt.
- During the summer, your potatoes may need to be watered twice a day, especially if you live in a hot, dry climate.
- During the colder season, most potato plants only need about 5-7 inches of rain per week to grow well, but if there are long weeks without rain in your area, they may need to be watered manually. You can place a rain gauge near the pot to see if the plants regularly get enough rain.
Finally, you should place the pot in an area that receives sun or partial shade. Potatoes need sunlightBut if they are exposed to direct sunlight for a long period of time, they suffer and may die. Check the soil’s pH with a meter or other type of test. You should do this in the middle of the season, especially if the leaves are turning yellow or weak. These plants thrive in soil with a pH of around 6.0. Because:
- Add more compost or manure if you need to lower the pH.
- Add agricultural lime if you need to raise the pH.
Beware of parasites. Many of these, like leafhoppers, can be removed by hand. For others, however, it may be necessary to use an organic pesticide to prevent infestation or kill them. Check your plants for signs of disease. Many diseases, like downy mildew, are contagious, so if potatoes show signs of disease, you should immediately move them away from other plants.