Growing Potatoes from Store Brought Potatoes is the best way to cultivate your own and enjoy a fresh and best tasting homegrown harvest!
Homegrown, freshly dug potatoes taste remarkably better than the ones you buy from the market. If you too want to experience that, check out this step-by-step guide on Growing Potatoes from Store Brought Potatoes.
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Growing Potatoes from Store Brought Potatoes
1. Cut Potato into Slices
Growing potatoes from store brought potatoes is a straightforward process. Look for potatoes with small buds on the surface. You can buy such potatoes, or there might be a few like that in your pantry.
These are the axillary buds, commonly referred to as eyes — from which new plants grow. Cut potatoes into not-so-thin and not-so-thick medium-size slices using a sharp knife so that the buds are safe and each slice has at least 2-3 of them attached.
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2. Let Them Dry
After cutting the slices, leave them in a cool and dry place for a day or two to heal. This will help the starch on the cut surface oxidize with air and form a hard grayish-brown crust.
This layer will prevent the chances of fungal infestation from coming in contact with the moist soil.
3. Prepare a Bag with a Growing Medium
Get a grow bag or pot and layer it with a well-draining loamy soil amended with a handful of organic compost. Avoid using compact soil!
You do not need a fancy stacked planter or expensive container for growing potatoes. Jute bags, burlap sacks, grow bags, and other normal containers with enough drainage holes will also serve the purpose just fine.
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4. Place the Potatoes
Place the potatoes with the healed cut face down so that they touch the soil surface. Ensure to lay the slices 3-4 inches apart to allow the roots spread freely.
5. Add a Layer of Potting Mix to Cover the Slices
Cover up the potato with another layer of well-draining potting mix to about an inch or two. Make sure that the buds or eyes are all covered with soil.
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6. Water Thoroughly
Water the growing medium well till it starts to seep from the bottom drainage hole of the container. If you see the slices getting exposed while watering, add more soil to cover them up 2-3 inches as it is important that they are not exposed to the light.
7. Wait and Watch them Grow!
That’s it! All you have to do is keep the pot where it gets partial sunlight and water regularly, and soon you will see new shoots sprouting.
When you spot the new growth, re-locate the container where it gets 4 to 6 hours of direct sun every day. Also, if you want to increase the harvest, you may need to hill them. Hilling is actually the process of heaping the potato stems with more soil.
A Few More Tips
- Once the plant grows up to 6 inches tall, cover the stems one-third (2 inches) with soil. Keep doing this periodically until the soil tops the container.
- Get a 14 to 16 inches deep pot for planting–in such a pot, you can plant 3-5 pieces of store brought potatoes.
- The appearance of potato flowers will announce the time for harvest. The exact time depends on the variety, climate, and size of potatoes you want. Generally, you can harvest in 2 to 4 months after planting.