Growing Potatoes In Containers
Growing Potatoes In Pots is simple and very rewarding. This simple way of growing potatoes can be done on the patio, on balconies or the backyard. You can harvest loads of delicious potatoes from a potato planter.
Growing potatoes in containers has loads of advantages. You don't have to dig, worry about soil-borne pests and harvesting is easy. You can grow potatoes in pots even if you don't have much of a garden. This space-saving way of growing potatoes can be done on patios, decks, balconies or backyards.
Containers: plain plastic pots do the trick. The minimum pot size is 12 inches diameter and minimum 15 inches deep. Make sure they have drainage holes at the bottom. You can also use these handy potato planters that will allow you to grow even more potatoes in a small space.
Potting soil: Get a good quality potting compost. I prefer to mix it with well rotten farmyard manure because potatoes like a lot of organic matter in the soil. A mix of 50% potting soil and 50% farmyard manure works very well.
Organic fertilizer: Add a couple of handful of organic fertilizer into each pot. This will ensure healthy and vigorous plant growth and a good crop. Feed again after five or six weeks.
Seed Potatoes: Get healthy and good quality seed potatoes . Chit (sprout) the potatoes for a couple of weeks in a bright spot. Egg cartons are very useful for this purpose.
Prepare your soil mix. I prefer to use a half and half mix of potting soil and farmyard manure. Good garden centers will stock pre-packed farmyard manure. Alternatively use an organic potting soil mix .
Fill the pot with the potting mix about 3-4 inches high. Depending on pot size put in 3-5 seed potatoes.
Cover them with the potting and manure mixture. Add a couple of handful of the organic fertilizer and mix it well into the soil. Don't fill the pot up to the top yet. Leave 3-4 inches to the rim of the pot.
Once your potatoes have grown to about an inch over the rim fill the pot up with more potting soil. This will prevent that the new potatoes on top will go green.
Water your potatoes in well after planting and keep the soil moist.
Now...watch your potato plants grow! Make sure that they don't dry out. Regular watering is a must. Add a bit more of the organic fertilizer after five or six weeks.
Once the plants are flowering your potatoes are ready! They are at their absolute best if you harvest them just before you want to cook them!
If you want to use a potato planter...
This is a very elegant way of growing potatoes in containers. You can produce a bumper crop of delicious potatoes on less than a square yard!
How it works..
Fill the planter with 6 inches of the potting-manure mixture and plant your seed potatoes about 2 inches deep. Once they are about six inches tall fill in more soil and plant some more potatoes on top. Cover them with 2 inches of soil again. Repeat this process until the potato planter is full. Don't forget to add some organic fertilizer with every layer.
Once your plants flower it is time to check for the first potatoes! Open the door at the bottom of the planter. Remove the ones that are large enough and enjoy your first crop!
These potato planters are reusable and can be folded for storage.