Growing potatoes is excellent but trickier at the same time. If you are looking for a guide on how to grow potatoes in your garden, this article is for you. In this article, we will provide you with details guide about planting potatoes, growing tips, how to care for, and harvesting tips. In short, a full guide on how to grow potatoes.
Potatoes are one of the favorite crops of the people. These are excellent sources of Vitamin C and are free from fat.
It compliments most of the dishes, and it would be great to have the freshly grown potatoes right from the field. You can also grow broccoli for the health benefits.
So, let’s look at the guide and follow each step to know how to grow potatoes in your garden area.
But, before that, it is essential to when is the right time to grow potatoes and types of potato varieties you can grow in your home garden. So, let’s not waste time further, and let’s get started!
When to Plant Potatoes
Potatoes grow seamlessly in cool weather conditions. The first crop is ready to harvest during April for about six to eight weeks. In the northern region, the potatoes can grow in November and December.
Potatoes can survive well in cool weather. However, it would help if you avoid extreme frost conditions. This may prevent the formation of the tuber.
A temporary covering of the sprouted foliage with an artificial cover and mulch would be great to avoid damage. However, you can grow potatoes like a winter crop in the southern region.
The ideal time for planting potatoes in the southern region is September to February. In that time, winter is mild, and plants can flourish properly. Try to maintain the ideal temperature between 45-to-55-degree F.
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Types of Potatoes
There are hundreds of varieties of potatoes available to grow in the gardens.
However, the best varieties for home gardens are red-skinned and tan-skinned potatoes having whitish flesh. Other varieties of potatoes plants are as follows:
- Irish Cobbler: Irregular in shape and has tan skin slightly sweet taste.
- Norland: Potatoes have red skin and can resist the potato scab.
- Mountain Rose: Pinkish flesh with red skin and can resist viruses.
- Red Pontiac: Deep eyes with red skin and easier to grow.
- Viking: Red Skin and resistance to potato scab.
- Chieftain: Reddish skin, whitish flesh, and resistance to the potato scab.
These are some of the varieties of potatoes that you can grow in your home garden easily.
You can choose according to the weather and location of your place.
How to Grow Potatoes
Growing potatoes can be a trickier part, and you need to start by picking the right potato for planting.
But, don’t worry, if you follow our below guide on how to grow potatoes as it is, you will be having lots of potatoes in your garden in no time.
So, let’s get started on how to grow potatoes guide.
1. Pick The Right Potatoes
The first thing in our guide on how to grow potatoes is picking the right potatoes for growing.
Potatoes are categorized based on the length of the time and maturation time.
- The early seed potatoes will mature within 60-1010 days. These potatoes must be planted at the end of the March season and ready to harvest during June and July. Arran Pilot, Pentland Javelin, and Dunluce are potato plant varieties.
- The prime cropping seed potatoes will mature within 125-140 days. The potatoes can be planted during the April season and ready to harvest during the middle of august.
- The harvesting season can be continued till October. These are among the highest yielding varieties and generally have large tubers. It can be stored well during the winter season.
- or Collect The Seed from Market or Use Potatoes Cuttings
Always ensure to have the certified seeds from the market as it reduces the risk of viruses and diseases.
You can collect the seeds from the market or use the potatoes with green eyes.
Moreover, you can also use potato cuttings. Make sure that potatoes are disease-free as it may create continuous problems.
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2. Make Potatoes Ready for Planting
If you are using potatoes cuttings, use a sharp knife and slice up the potatoes. Make sure that potato pieces have eyes on them.
These are small pits from where the stems and roots will develop. Place the potatoes under the direct heat of the sun for two days until you see the eyes and sprouts growing out.
Don’t soak the potatoes in water because potatoes don’t have any shell which needs to be softened before growing or sprouting.
3. Use Potato Fruits to Cultivate Seeds
Many potatoes grow small, which are highly toxic green color fruits. This may contain the true potato seeds.
You can cut the fruit finely and collect the pieces into the dishes with water. After a day or two, seeds will be separated and settled at the bottom.
4. Spout Out the Potatoes Tuber
Sprout out the potato tuber in an empty egg box.
You can also use the empty seeds tray for sprouting. Once potatoes start sprouting, they are ready to grow and plant.
Also Read: How to Grow and Care Asparagus
5. Prepare the Soil Bed
Next in our guide on how to grow potatoes is to plant the potatoes in the right way. Let’s see how you can do that.
Before you start sowing, prepare the soil bed. You can plant the potatoes on small pieces of land. Larger pots would be enough for growing potatoes.
Before you start sowing the potatoes, make the soil weed-free. Add composts and manure into the soil to enrich with vital nutrients.
Now, prepare the soil ground and add compost to the pot. Make sure that soil is rich in potassium. Make sure the soil is loosening enough to hold the moisture.
6. Pick the Right Weather to Plant
Choose the right time to plant potatoes. So, make sure to plant the potatoes during fall or two weeks before the frost season.
This helps to provide ideal conditions and control the pest too. During day time, potatoes need sunshine for longer.
7. Choose The Right Spot
Choose those spots to plant the potatoes where maximum sunlight falls during the day. This will help the potatoes to grow ideally.
It helps to replenish the nitrogen and potassium content in the soil. Be sure that you should grow potatoes in different parts all season.
Also Read: How to Prepare Soil
8. Plant Seeds Four Inches Deep into Soil
If you are using seeds to grow potatoes, follow these tips.
Potatoes can be planted in single rows. However, you need to create a gap of at least 12 inches. Dig out a hole about 4 inches deep.
Build up the soil, place the seed into the soil, and cover it. Alternatively, you can plant the cuts of the potatoes in the soil. Make sure that the cuts have eyes.
Also, use sulfur to grow the potatoes but carefully use them in the soil. Make sure that the cuts with eyes face the downward side into the soil.
As soon as the leaves start erupting out of the soil, maintain the moisture and nutrients in the soil.
Once the plant is established, it will start producing flowers. You need to give nutrients in the form of liquid, and once the plant foliage turns brown, it is ready for harvesting.
9. Pour Water Timely
Potatoes grow well in well-drained soil. However, you need to maintain adequate moisture in the soil when the tubers start producing.
You can water the plants once a week. However, avoid the water logging condition as it may invite fungus growth.
Once a week should be fine during summertime, as long as it is a thorough watering, but do it more often if necessary.
If the plant’s leaves look like they’re wilting, then your potatoes need more water.
This is all we have in the guide that will help you on how to grow potatoes. If you follow the guide, we are sure you will be growing potatoes in no time.
However, growing potatoes is not the only thing, it is very essential to know the right time to harvest potatoes. The below sections will help you in that. Keep on reading!
When to Harvest Potatoes
Though there is no perfect time to harvest the potatoes, you can monitor these signs of maturation which shows it is the right time to harvest the potatoes:
- Potatoes are ready for harvesting when you see the brown foliage. This signifies that foliage is about to die and potatoes are mature.
- Some gardeners prefer to have new potatoes intentionally when the potatoes are smaller in size.
- The harvesting of the potatoes can be done within three weeks when the potato plant stops producing the flowers.
- However, the new potatoes need to be consumed within a few days as they have shortened life span.
- Let them dry and toughen up before storage and harvesting. Before harvesting, let the potato skin mature and thick. However, if the skin is thin, potatoes are new and may affect the storage life.
- Potatoes can easily tolerate the light frost and chilling conditions. So, it will be the perfect time to harvest the potatoes.
Also Read: How to Grow and Care for Garlic?
How to Harvest Potatoes
Here are some of the best tips for harvesting potatoes.
- When the potatoes are ready, cut out the brown foliage and let the potatoes untouched for more than 14 days.
- This allows the potatoes to develop thick skin before harvesting. But avoid much waiting as it may affect the potatoes.
- Once the settling time is off, dig out the soil and take the potatoes off. Do ensure to dig out the potatoes gently. It helps to avoid damage to the tubers.
- Do not leave potatoes under the sun after harvesting. The potatoes may turn green in colour and taste bitter. Potatoes have solanine, resulting in a bitter taste if left under the sun after harvesting.
- Also, try to avoid bruising the potatoes skin. It may affect the shelf life and may invite rotting during the storage.
Let the potatoes dry under the air if the soil is wet. This will help to dry the skin. If you do not dry the potatoes before bagging, they may start rotting.
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How to Cure Potatoes
Here are some of the steps to cure potatoes:
- Dry the freshly dug potatoes in cool and dark places for more than two weeks. This helps to cure the potatoes’ skin, improve the shelf life, and store longer.
- Once the curing is done, brush off the potato to remove extra dirt. Do not wash the potatoes before you store them. Washing of the potato may spoil the texture and shorten the storage life.
- Avoid keeping potatoes near fruits such as apples. This will release ethylene gas which may spoil potatoes.
How to Grow Potatoes – Conclusion
This is all you need to know on how to grow potatoes in your home garden.
Potatoes can be grown in your garden areas in all seasons. However, you need to take care of the environmental condition and maintain the ideal temperature to grow the potatoes ideally.
Besides that, you need to maintain the nutrient level in the soil. During the growing season, take care of the potatoes from pests and diseases. Use natural compost to keep the soil fertile and maintain moisture in the soil.
This will help in growing potatoes excellently. In addition to this, harvest the potatoes carefully to avoid damage.
With this, we come to an end by discussing how to grow potatoes in your home garden? What are your thoughts? Do you like the guide on how to grow potatoes?
Would you grow potatoes in your home? Do let us know in the comments section below. How long does it take for potatoes to grow after planting.
How long I will see sprouts after planing?
Generally, it takes around 12-20 days for the sprouts to germinate after planing.
How much water should I give to potatoes?
1 or 2 inches of water weekly is enough for you to grow potatoes. Avoid water logged conditions as it may damage roots.
When can I harvest potatoes?
Around 80-100 days are required for harvesting the full-grown potatoes.