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How To Start A Vegetable Garden - 30 Day Challenge - It's Potato Planting Time
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How To Start A Vegetable Garden  -  30 Day Challenge  -  It\'s Potato Planting Time

Welcome to Day 14 of the 30 Day Challenge: How to Start a Vegetable Garden. In my last article, I discussed how to harden off your seedlings before planting them outdoors. This is an important step to ensure that your seedling doesn't die off from shock upon transplant.

If you missed this important article, please check it out here on Street Articles: How To Start A Vegetable Garden - 30 Day Challenge - Hardening Off Your Seedlings. My Street Articles profile also has a link to my website, where you can find all of the articles for this challenge.

Why Plant Potatoes

Potatoes are a staple in many pantries because they are a versatile food that can be used as part of a main course or as a side dish. Served baked or fried, mashed or sauteed they are the perfect item to keep on hand in your kitchen.

From the time that they are planted, potatoes take between two and four months to mature. If grown correctly, you could harvest 50 pounds or more of potatoes at a time.

Potatoes can be stored for months at a time in a cool, dry and dark place with minimal preservation steps. Potatoes can also be canned to add to your food storage and when stored properly will last for up to 5 years.

How to Plant Potatoes

Potatoes can be grown in the ground or in containers. Where you choose to grow your potatoes depends on the size of your garden and the amount of space you have for growing.

If you choose to grow your potatoes in the ground, you want to plant them in rows approximately 3 feet apart. Make sure the soil is well tilled as potatoes do best in loose soil.

Due to limited space, we are growing our potatoes in containers.

What type of containers should you grow your potatoes in?

When selecting the right container for your potatoes, there really isn't a wrong answer. Anything that holds a lot of dirt like large garbage cans, yard trash bags, 2'x2'x3' raised beds, even tires are perfect for growing potatoes. We are using 32 gallon heavy duty yard trash bags this year.

Tip: When selecting soil for your container potatoes, choose a very loose soil.

Potting soil is a must - stay away from garden soil as it is too dense. We chose to do layers of potting soil and peat moss to provide better drainage and looser soil. The looser the soil, the more space for the roots to spread and more space for potatoes to grow.

In order to plant your seed potatoes, start by putting many small holes in a heavy duty garbage bag.

Place a layer of stone or peat moss in the bottom about 2 inches thick for drainage.

Add 3-4 inches of potting soil.

Place 6-8 seed potatoes in a circle about 5 inches apart with the sprouting eyes pointing up.

Cover the potatoes and sprouts with another 2-3 inches of potting soil.

Water your container and place in a sunny spot with the bag rolled down.

Once the above ground part of the plant gets to be 12 inches tall, add addition layers of peat moss and potting soil making sure to cover only 1/3 of the plant with soil.

The buried part of the plant will sprout and create another layer of tubars.

Continue to do this for a total of 4-5 layers.

After the plant flowers and the plant begins to turn yellow, stop watering your plant. In a few days you can harvest your crop.

Cut open the bag and remove the tubars. Place them in the sun for a day or two to toughen the skins if you wish to store them in a cool, dry place for a few months.

If your interested in growing potatoes in tires, check Rob Ainslie article on Street Articles: Growing Potatoes In Containers – What About Old Tyres?

30 Day Challenge

Are you completing this garden challenge with me? What stage are you in: planting seeds? caring for seedlings? potting up? transplanting to your garden? I'd love to hear your comments. If you have any gardening questions, please post them here or on my blog and I will do my best to help you.


Street Talk

AJ, these articles are going viral on Pinterest. I just read over 100 re pins on day 15

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Great news! Thanks so much, Shawn.

Reply
  about 7 years ago
Golfspice  

Can't beat a good spud. This is a vegetables we do grow - Thanks for the useful tips.

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

You're welcome, Golfspice. Any additional words of wisdom on growing potatoes?

Reply
  about 7 years ago

Thanks AJ

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Thanks, Shawn.

Reply
  about 7 years ago

AJ very well done! Just moving up the links in the lights for seedlings. Planted a bunch of not-from-seed stuff that came thru the mail. Amazing how stuff that looks like a dead stick can come alive in dirt and produce raspberries...

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Awesome, Cynthia. I love that you're doing raspberries - you'll have to share some tips as I'd like to try them next year!

Reply
  about 7 years ago

Okay! Guess the first tip is not to throw out the dried up dead sticks that arrive in the mail:-)

  
  about 7 years ago
Barbara9  

fantastic article

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Thanks, Barbara.

Reply
  about 7 years ago

Excellent article and instruction AJ...

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Thanks, Kevin.

Reply
  about 7 years ago

Great information AJ, I'm bookmarking this one! :)

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Thanks, Penny. Give it a try, you might yield a HUGE crop!

Reply
  about 7 years ago

AJ this is a fantastic, magnificent damn run out of words to describe one of the best descriptions on how to grow potatoes at home, absolutely brilliant. Anyone that follows this advice will crop potatoes by the pockets full. Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant.

Reply
  about 7 years ago
  

Rob, you're making me blush! As one who has done container potatoes for years, I'm happy to know I got the instruction right. Thanks for the high praise.

Reply
  about 7 years ago
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