Since potatoes are one of the easiest veggies to grow, you don’t usually plant them from the flowers’ seeds. Instead, you plant seed potatoes, which are pieces of the plant’s root structure.
Roots called “seed potatoes” can be used to grow new potatoes that are genetically identical to the parent potato. People who garden at home will find this method of vegetative growth easier and faster than growing potatoes from seeds.
Before potatoes start to grow, it can take anywhere from 60 to 90 days. Find out how to plant seed potatoes early in the spring so that you can gather them in the middle of summer.
There are no seeds in seed potatoes at all. Instead, they are just potato roots that can be planted. Most of the time, they are saved from last year’s crop and kept from going bad over the winter in very specific ways.
Instead of saving some of your own harvest to plant again the following year, we suggest that you buy new seed potatoes that have been confirmed to be disease-free at the start of each growing season.
Many bacterial, viral, and fungal diseases can affect potatoes, such as potato scab and potato blight, which are easy to spread to new plants when you plant your own saved roots.
Red potatoes, white potatoes, potatoes with yellow meat, or potatoes with red skin are all the same. So are potatoes with any other color skin or flesh. The only way to be sure of a “clean” crop is to buy and plant approved seed potatoes.
You can be sure that certified seed potatoes are free of disease, and they haven’t been handled with chemicals that stop sprouting like most grocery store potatoes are.
The buds (called eyes) on the top of potatoes grow into new potato plants. The eyes look like bumps in the skin of the potato. You may have seen a potato bud grow if you kept it in the pantry for too long.
It is possible for each eye to grow into a new plant. We don’t usually put seed potatoes whole because of this. Instead, they are cut up before planting so that each seed potato can grow more plants.
Seed potatoes should be cut into golf ball-sized pieces. There should be at least two eyes on each piece. Put a seed potato in a well-lit area at room temperature for a few days (but not in direct sunlight) before cutting it up.
This will make it grow. You can also cut the seed potato first and let the sprouts grow in the ground. This is the way we like to plant potatoes because it is easier to plant a seed potato that hasn’t sprouted than one that has made weak new stems that are easy to break off while planting.
Cut the seed potatoes into pieces two or three days before you plant them. Use a clean knife to do this. Make sure you wait until the last day of frost in your area.
Leave the seed potatoes at room temperature in a single layer, even if they haven’t grown yet. This will help the cut tissue heal. This keeps diseases that live in the dirt from getting into the seed potatoes when they are planted.
About 8 to 10 seed pieces can be made from one pound of seed potatoes. If the pieces are 12 inches apart, that’s enough for a row that’s 10 feet long.
When we first learned how to plant seed potatoes, we found that a little less space between them works just as well. When we put seed potatoes, we leave about 10 inches between each one.
You can put seed potatoes in three main ways. You can put them in the ground or in a raised bed, in a pot, or under straw. Move your crops around so that you don’t put your potatoes in the same spot every year.
You should choose a spot that gets at least six hours of full sun every day and wait until the soil has warmed up and the right amount of water is in it before putting seed potatoes.
Now that you know how to plant seed potatoes in your own yard, let ud show you each of these three ways.
First, pay attention to how far apart and how deep your seed potato pieces are. This is the first step in planting seed potatoes in the ground. To plant seed potatoes in the ground, either dig a hole for each cut piece or use a yard hoe to make a trench 10 to 12 inches wide.
Then, plant several of them in a row. It should be 4 to 5 inches deep. Eighteen to twenty-four inches should separate the rows if you want to plant more than one.
If you put seed potatoes in the ground, you should hill them twice or three times during the growing season with a few inches of soil, whether you do it in rows or holes.
There is more space for tubers to grow when potato plants are growing deeper. But if you put the seed potatoes too deeply at first, they might rot before they grow. At the very least, the potatoes are buried so deeply that it is hard to collect them at the end of the growing season.
Gardeners get around this problem by piling up extra dirt around the plants as they grow instead of putting the seed potatoes deeply at first. It’s called “hilling” to do this.
About once every three to four weeks, use a shovel or hoe to pile nearby soil up against the stems, making sure that only a few leaves show above the soil.
You don’t need to bury them too deeply; as long as you can see some of the plant, it will keep growing and keep the weeds down.
The amounts of potatoes that are hilled in the ground are higher. Also, the growing roots are kept in the dark so they don’t turn into green potatoes, which could make you sick because they have solanine in them.
You might also be interested in how to put potato seeds in pots. This second way to grow potatoes is great for people who don’t have a lot of room or an in-ground garden.
It’s simple to do, and even though the crops aren’t always as big as when you plant seed potatoes in the ground, it’s the best way to save time and effort.
To put seed potatoes in a pot, you must first find the right type of pot. This is how potatoes should be grown in pots: bigger is better. For each seed potato to grow into a full-sized plant, it needs at least 2.5 to 3 gallons of growing soil.
That means you can put two seed potato pieces in a container about the size of a 5-gallon utility bucket. Even more seed pieces can fit in pots that are bigger.
Make sure the pot has holes in it for ventilation, and use good potting soil that has a fertilizer mixed in with compost 50/50.
You could use fabric grow bags to put seed potatoes in containers if you are thinking about how to do that.
These cheap, light containers drain well and keep plant roots from going around inside the pots. Some brands even make grow bags with flaps that open on the side to make it easy to gather potatoes.