• The Vegetarian Homestead

How to Plant potatoes

It is officially Spring!

It is officially potato planting time!

Can you tell that I am excited? Potatoes are one of the first crops to be planted in spring. I absolutely love everything about potatoes. Planting, harvesting, storing and eating. Thankfully, they are very easy to grow!

We take the lazy and easy route when it comes to planting potatoes. I like lazy and easy.

My seed potatoes are saved from last year's harvest. Well, that's not exactly true. The potatoes grew eyes and I felt bad eating them so I let them do their thing and I have beautiful potatoes full of healthy "eyes" on them.

Our process for planting potatoes couldn't be easier.

This is what we do:

  1. Pick a garden spot that gets at least 8 hours of full sun.

This will do! Winter rye will be tilled in before planting potatoes.

2. Till the area. The soil needs to be loose at least 6inches deep. Potatoes are a root vegetable! Give them nice loose soil for a great start!

3. plant seed potato 1 foot apart in every direction (our rows are 2ft wide with a 1.5-2ft pathway). I could get away with narrower pathways but you'll see why we do this. Make sure each potato has at least 1 "eye" on it. You can cut larger potatoes in to smaller chunks with at least one "eye" on it. This year I decided to leave the potatoes whole since they were already small.

I go up and down the pathways holding a box of seed potatoes and drop them in the furrows about a foot apart. I don't measure.

4. Cover potatoes with soil and sprinkle some fertilizer over the soil. This is why I leave wider pathways. The soil from the pathway is scraped and pulled over the potatoes. Also, I hate walking in narrow pathways.

Using a hoe, I scrape the dirt from the pathways on to the potatoes so it makes a raised row. This helps with drainage and also separates the beds from the pathways so no one steps on the potatoes.

5. Cover soil with hay.

Sprinkling of hay will do for now! We ran short on hay today but will collect more soon and cover the rows. It is going to rain tonight so I don't even have to water! Lazy and easy!

6. Cover with more hay as the potatoes grow. We do this mostly for retaining moisture and suppressing weeds.

7. Harvest when the plants start to die back. This happens around June in our zone. Digging potatoes is so much fun!

I am sure there are better ways to do this that may give you more abundant of a harvest but this works just fine for us. Last year we used this method and we harvested enough potatoes to last us until now! Not bad for lazy and easy, huh?

Happy Gardening!

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