This will be the first year I’ve grown potatoes in the garden. Potatoes are inexpensive at the grocery store so I wonder if it will be a waste of space to grow them at home? I’ve heard that home grown potatoes taste much better than store-bought. That’s true for everything else I grow, so it seems reasonable to assume that will be true with potatoes too.
Potatoes are an early spring planted crop so I’m happy I can get out there and plant something else in the garden. The spring equinox was on March 20th this year and today is April 6th. Seems early to me right?
I found these two boxes of potatoes at Al’s Garden Center. I wanted to buy from Johnny’s because their other seeds have been so good but apparently potatoes sell out VERY early, like January, so I missed the boat on that one.
I have a French Fingerling potato and a Purple Majesty potato. I’m always looking for more colorful things to grow. Every color comes from a specific mix of vitamins and minerals in a plant so “eating the rainbow” ensures a healthy, well-rounded diet. Plus, I think these will be really beautiful on the plate.
I know gardeners who have had a lot of success with potatoes in Grow Bags so I decided to use mine for these guys.
Potatoes like more acidic soil and they really should be rotated on a 3-4 year cycle so using bags to isolate them from the other veggies seems like a good idea.
These little seed potatoes did a great job sprouting all on their own in the box so they were ready to plant after sitting on the counter for a couple of weeks.
I added about 5 inches of the Dr. Earth Acid Lovers soil to the bottom of the bag and then arranged the potatoes on their sides with the sprouts facing up.
Then I gently added another 3 inches or so of soil on top. I kept it light and fluffy so I didn’t break the sprouts. I gave them a little water and positioned the bags at the end of one of the beds where they would be warm and get lots of direct sun.
On April 21st I noticed these beautiful little leaves pop up. I let them grow a few inches tall and then added more soil on to to bury the leaves.
On April 26th, they had grown even taller so I added more soil.
I repeated this process until the bags were full of soil and then they popped out of the top of the bags on May 14th.
Now I will just continue to let them grow into nice looking plants and eventually they will flower. They will be forming little potatoes during the flowering stage. 2-3 weeks after they’re done flowering, I could start harvesting a few little ones to eat. I will try to let some of them continue to grow into larger potatoes that I can store for a few winter months.
These photos are from May 25th. Check back for the flowering stage!