Spectacular Spuds Ideas to Grow Potatoes

November 22, 2023
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As an Idaho resident, I love potatoes! There are so many things to do with it and you can grow it in small areas. Moreover, you don’t have to live in the state of culture to have fun. The cultivation of potatoes can be practiced almost everywhere.

The potato is a staple food of man, along with wheat and rice. In fact, it is the most widespread non-cereal crop in the world. These tubers have such a meaning that they were called potatoes. They even play a role in pop culture (just ask Mr. Potato).

Potatoes are not only popular, they also occupy their place in history. He had the honor of becoming the first crop grown indoors! in 1995, white potatoes were planted in the microgravity astroculture laboratory of the space shuttle Columbia. This experiment allowed astronauts to grow food and purify the air while traveling in space.

Unfortunately, the story of our potatoes was not just about fun and games. In the 19th century, it was almost the only source of food in Ireland. after blight finished almost all crops and caused a devastating famine. This is a good example of why biodiversity is crucial in agriculture.

All about potatoes

Solanum tuberosum is native to South America. It was imported to Europe, but at first it was not very popular, because the flowers resembled atropa belladonna, a harmful relative of the potato. Finally, a real miracle of these tubers appeared and they became a inexpensive and satisfying food product. Now gardeners all over the world are learning how to plant potatoes on their own.

Potatoes are grown as annuals in zones 2 to 11. The plants grow up to 1 to 1.5 feet tall and wide, with deciduous and herbaceous shoots. Under the ground, they grow round or elongated tubers of white, yellow-red, purple and blue shades. Depending on the variety, they can reach 4 inches in diameter (or more!). This potato grows so abundantly that it is usually possible to obtain 25 pounds of potatoes from one pound of seeds.

It is important to note that potatoes can be poisonous if you are not careful. When the tubers are exposed to the sun, they turn green. The composition of the paint includes solanine, a chemical that is slightly toxic to humans. Fortunately, this can be easily avoided by stirring the walkers with soil or at least cutting off the green parts after harvesting.

Plant

You can start buying seed potatoes in the middle or at the end of winter, online or in garden stores. Find out when you should plant potatoes by looking at the estimated date of the last frosts in your area. Seeds should be sown 2-3 weeks before this date. Plants, as a rule, grow only after the last frosts. However, they are cold-resistant plants, so you don’t have to worry too much at the moment, because they can survive the frost.

Start by rubbing the potato, which means that it will germinate a few months before planting. Put each potato in an egg carton, muffin tin, or other separate container. The eyes should be directed upwards, as this is where the germs are formed. Place the container in a sunny but cool place (about 50°F). A little over a month after, white sprouts should grow from each eye of your seeds. When they reach about an inch long, they can be planted in your garden or on a raised bed.

Distance is the key to growing potatoes. Remember that you should have enough space to form these tasty tubers! We have a separate article on how to plant potatoes correctly to get maximum yield.

Planting potatoes above the ridges and watering in the furrows will prevent the plants from watering with water. If you live in a very dry area, it is better to plant potatoes in furrows to maintain soil moisture.

Growing potatoes in bags or containers is a great solution for small spaces. You can grow it in almost any container you can find; the main thing is that it is larger than a potato plant and that it has drainage holes, it should work. Fill a quarter to a third of your container with well-drained soil and plant the seeds at least 6 inches apart.

As the seed potatoes grow, sprinkle them with soil or mulch them so that only the top of the stem remains open. This allows the plant to grow more roots underground, resulting in a larger harvest. Make sure that all the tubers are completely covered. Under the influence of the sun, they turn green and release solanine, a slightly toxic chemical.

Care

How are potatoes grown? The answer is simple: give it more sun, nutrients in the soil and love-and more. Here’s what you need to know.

Watering and humidity

When growing potatoes, water them regularly so that the soil does not dry out. Since bacteria multiply better in heat and humidity, water only at the base of the plant. Try to water in the morning so that all wet leaves dry out during the day. Use a immersion hose to ensure a slow and constant humidity if desired.

If the foliage begins to die at the end of the growing season, stop watering the potatoes. This time is necessary to dry and fix the skin. If they are given too much moisture, they will do the opposite and begin to rot.

Floor

You can plant potatoes in almost any soil, except for heavy clay. However, it must be well drained and contain a lot of organic substances. Until the soil before planting is loose enough so that the tubers can grow without much resistance.

Apply compost to the soil in the fall or a few months before planting. Because acidic soil helps prevent scabies, make sure that the pH is between 4.2 and 7.0. For best results, use agricultural sulfur to lower the pH of the soil.

Remember that if you plant in bags, you need to plant potatoes on a sufficiently flat surface and plant them gradually, as the greens appear. This picking process allows the potato to grow along the stem.

Fertilization

In order for your potatoes to grow well, pay attention to their nitrogen content. This macronutrient from the soil is responsible for the green growth of plants. Use it by introducing a balanced or nitrogen-rich fertilizer into the soil immediately after planting.

As soon as the leaves grow, the tubers begin to flake off. Stimulate their growth by applying subsequent fertilizing with fertilizers rich in potassium and phosphorus. It is important to reduce the nitrogen content, as this will help the plant to focus on the growth of tubers rather than on the leaves.

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