What’s not to love about potatoes? Creamy garlic mashed potatoes, zesty steak fries, cheesy potatoes au gratin, twice baked potatoes, sweet potato pie, and the list goes on. We could spend all day listing the delicious ways to prepare this versatile root vegetable. Instead, we’ll show you how to grow potatoes from potatoes and ways to store your bountiful harvest.
Not only are there many potato recipes, but there are also many potato varieties, from russet, Yukon gold, and sweet potatoes to potatoes the size of a golf ball.
While potatoes are starchy vegetables, they are packed full of nutrients such as vitamins C and B6, magnesium, and potassium. If you always thought that growing your own potatoes at home is difficult, think again.
These vegetables are easy growers and one of the few veggies that you grow from scraps. Don’t throw away your potatoes when they start sprouting. Instead, recycle them and plant them in the garden for a new potato harvest.
- Ways to Grow, Harvest, and Store Potatoes
- Things to Know before Growing Potatoes from Potatoes
- How to Grow Potatoes from Potatoes
- Planting Potatoes from Potatoes in the Garden
- Caring for your Garden Potatoes
- How Long do Potatoes Take to Grow?
- How to Deal with Common Potato Problems
- When and How to Harvest Potatoes
- The Best Ways to Cure and Store Potatoes
Ways to Grow, Harvest, and Store Potatoes
Don’t toss out those spuds just because they start to form eyes. We show you how to regrow new potatoes from leftover grocery store potatoes for an abundant harvest and ways to store them at the end of the growing season.
Things to Know before Growing Potatoes from Potatoes
Can you grow all potato types from scraps, including sweet potatoes, and where is the best place to grow potatoes?
Can you plant grocery store potatoes, or should you get them from garden centers? Here are a few tips to know before growing potatoes from potatoes.
There are two ways to grow potatoes from potatoes, and all potato types are easy to grow with these methods. Purchase heirloom seed potatoes from your local garden center or grow your own from grocery store potatoes.
Nurseries have all kinds of potatoes, from russet and Kennebec to fingerling, and some of them are even disease-free seed potatoes. Many store potatoes are treated with pesticides, and these may spread disease throughout your garden.
Some are treated with growth inhibitors to prevent potato eye development. If you grow potatoes from your local market, make sure they are organic.
After deciding which potato to grow, prepare the garden bed for planting by raking compost beneath two inches of soil. Potato tubers grow ideally in well-drained, loose soil, so work out dirt clumps to make the garden breathable.
Choose a site where the plants receive about seven hours of full sun daily and plant them in the early spring when the soil temperature is between 59 and 68°F after the last frost date. Planting potatoes in buckets or other containers is also an option.
How to Grow Potatoes from Potatoes
The first step in learning how to grow a potato plant from a potato is to get the veggie ready for planting. Unfortunately, a potato probably won’t grow if you just plop it into the ground. Here is the way to get potatoes to sprout and how to prepare the potato for the garden the right way.
Cut the potato into a few chunks, making sure to leave at least one eye on each section since these sprouts are essential for the growing process.
Place the seed potatoes in a dry area and let them sit for a few days to give them time to scab over and prevent rotting after you plant them.
Planting Potatoes from Potatoes in the Garden
While planting potatoes from potatoes is relatively simple, they require proper depth and spacing to produce a good crop. The same basic procedure applies to growing garlic from scraps, too. Here is how to plant your seed potatoes in the garden.
Start by digging holes that are four inches deep and one foot apart. If you are planting rows, leave a three-foot space between each row.
Set a seed potato, cut side down, into each hole, cover with dirt, and water the potting soil well. Consider placing a small stick or marker near each potato to help you remember where you planted them.
If you do not have a garden, it is possible to grow potatoes in a raised bed, pots, or grow bags as long as they are large enough, just like growing onions from onions. Choose a container that holds ten to 15 gallons and is two to three feet tall.
Caring for your Garden Potatoes
A garden needs the right amount of sunshine, water, and food to flourish, no matter what you decide to grow in it. Otherwise, all your time and effort go to waste. Here are ways to care for your plants while growing potatoes from potatoes.
Potato plants require one to two inches of water each week, and it’s good practice to give them a drink of water when the top inch of soil is dry.
However, water them a little less right after planting and after they mature to prevent rotting. Cover the garden with mulch such as hay or straw to retain moisture and stop weeds.
After five weeks of growing, it’s time to hill the plants by piling soil up around the stem to create a one-foot incline on each side. Continue hilling each week to protect the small potatoes from sunlight as they mature.
How Long do Potatoes Take to Grow?
After planting potatoes from potatoes and watching the plants grow, you begin to wonder how long you have to wait before they are ready for harvesting. How long do potatoes take to grow and mature?
Potato Plant Growth
After planting seed potatoes, the plants take three to four weeks before emerging with foliage, followed by ten to 12 weeks of growth, and finally two to three weeks more to finish maturing after foliage die-back.
The entire growing process takes anywhere from 70 to 100 days, depending on the potato type.
How to Deal with Common Potato Problems
Growing potatoes from a potato takes some patience and discovering that your new plants struggle with problems is discouraging. Here are some common issues potato plants deal with and ways to prevent them.
Potato Plant Problems
Common potato pests are Colorado potato beetles that feed on the leaves and devastate crops. They are black, yellow, and orange beetles, and it’s necessary to pluck them off by hand as soon as you spot them. You can also use a potato bug killer that is homemade or purchase a commercial product.
Fungus and disease are also common with potato plants. Brown and wilting yellow leaves, spotted foliage, and cracked, scabbed tubers are signs of a possible disease.
To prevent these issues, consider purchasing disease-free seed potatoes, water the garden earlier during the day to give the leaves time to dry before nightfall and rotate your crops yearly.
When and How to Harvest Potatoes
Other garden plants produce fruits and veggies above ground, but potatoes grow beneath the soil, and knowing when they are mature is not always obvious. Here is when and how to harvest your crop after you plant potatoes from old potatoes.
When your potato plants begin to yellow and wilt, usually 13 to 17 weeks after planting, this is a sign that they are getting ready for harvest.
While this may seem like a cause for alarm, this is a natural part of the growing process. The potatoes are mature and ready for harvest two to three weeks after the foliage begins to die back.
To harvest them, use your hands to dig them up from beneath the ground, and wear garden gloves if necessary. Avoid using a shovel since the tool damages the outside of the potato.
The Best Ways to Cure and Store Potatoes
Since one plant produces at least three potatoes each, it’s easy to get a large crop of new potatoes at the end of the growing season. Here is the best way to cure and store your potatoes to keep them fresh and ready for the dinner table.
After digging up your potatoes, brush off the excess dirt with your hands and set them in a dry and shady area of the garden to cure for a few days.
After curing, preserve potatoes in a cool, dark spot in the kitchen or pantry. Potatoes require air circulation, so do not keep them in a closed container.
For long-term storage, keep them where the temperatures are above freezing but below 60°F. Keep your potatoes away from onions since they release a gas that causes the potatoes to spoil quickly.
Planting potatoes is a great way to recycle old potatoes, and homegrown potatoes are the most delicious since you know exactly where they came from and how they are grown.
Not only are they easy to grow, but each plant produces three to six new potatoes, so you’ll never run out of these tasty vegetables.
Now that you know how to grow potatoes from potatoes and give your plants the care they need to provide you with a good harvest, why not share our potato planting guide with the potato-lovers in your life on Facebook and Pinterest?