Easy Methods for Growing Potatoes

Photo Credit: krossbow, via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution License.

From giant, starchy baking potatoes to small, waxy fingerlings; from pale white to deep purple, there are almost endless options available to you when you grow your own. The flavors and colors far exceed what's available in most grocery stores. And, with a little planning, even those of us with small gardens can grow at least a few potatoes.I was leafing through my copy of Organic Gardening magazine, and came across a great article by Doug Hall about easy ways to plant potatoes. He looked at seven different easy methods, including growing potatoes in a raised bed, growing in a garbage bag, and growing in a wire mesh cylinder.

What I really liked about the article was that he laid out the pros and cons of each method. For example, he said that the trash bag method was definitely inexpensive, but it was ugly and produced low yields of tiny potatoes, most likely because the soil in the bag dried out too fast. A method I've been considering, growing in a cylinder of wire mesh fencing, got equally dismal results.

After looking at a variety of different methods, Hall reports that growing potatoes in a raised bed, adding soil periodically to the top of the bed to "hill up," is the best method, yielding plenty of nice, big potatoes.

I think that if you're growing potatoes mainly to have a nice supply of your own small new potatoes, that several of the methods that he found to be less than satisfactory would work fine. But if you're going for nice, big baking potatoes, a raised bed looks like the way to go.

Read the entire article about methods for planting potatoes at Organic Gardening's web site.
More About Vegetable Gardening:
Most Nutritious Vegetables and How to Grow Them in Your Garden
Easiest Veggies to Grow

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