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Grow Your Own Potatoes from Seed Potatoes

Have you ever considered growing your own potatoes? They are a nutritious and popular vegetable, and everybody has a favourite method of cooking them, whether mashed, boiled or fried. The great thing is that are fairly easy to grow, and below are a few tips to get you started.

Choosing Your Potatoes


Whilst potatoes can be grown from seed; the easiest method is to grow them from seeded potatoes. There are many varieties of potato that you could choose; however, early varieties, such as Rocket or Maris Bard, are the least likely to encounter problems as they will be picked earlier than the later varieties.

Chitting

To encourage a potato to sprout before it is planted, a process called ‘chitting’ is carried out. This should be done in January or February, when the weather is still cool. Using a tray, stand the potatoes upright, with the blunter end of the potato at the top. Keep these in a place that has a lot of natural light. Gradually, you will notice tiny shoots appearing. When these are a little under an inch long, the seed potatoes are ready for planting.

Planting

You should plant your newly sprouted potatoes in a sunny place, around mid March or April, when the temperature has started to rise a little. Make sure to avoid planting in places that are prone to frost as this will kill off the tender plants. To plant them, simply dig a long trench approximately four or five inches deep, depending on the size of your potatoes. Before putting in the potatoes, it is a good idea to add a little fertiliser in the trench to encourage initial growth of the potatoes. Bearing in mind that each plant will produce several potatoes; it is important to give them room to grow, so plant each one approximately one foot apart. There should also be a minimum of one and a half feet between each row. It should go without saying that the potatoes should be planted with the sprouts pointing up. Make sure that you cover each one lightly with soil.

Remember that potatoes contain a lot of water; therefore, if the weather is especially dry, you will need to water your potato plants at regular intervals, otherwise you will find that when you finally harvest them, they are very small indeed.

Once the shoots start to appear through the soil, add additional earth, covering each plant until the sprouts are just under the surface. Continue to do this at regular intervals, and eventually you should have a mound of soil around each plant around six inches high.

Harvesting

This is the most enjoyable part for most people, when they get to see the fruits of their labour. When the seeds have fully matured and it is time to harvest them. Harvesting season usually starts around June and finishes in September and a good way to tell when your plant is ready for harvesting is when the flowers on the sprouts have started to open. Once you have picked themArticle Search, early variety potatoes are ready to eat.

 

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Colin McDonald writes on behalf of Kings Seeds – seed potatoes  supplier.



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