Are you a farmer in Arizona? If so, chances are that you’ve always wanted to plant Potatoes. However, You either don’t know how to start or you’re tried before and found no results.
Arizona is very popular in the production of potatoes, due to its mild and warm climate. This is the main key in growing potatoes, as potato plants do not like frost at all and do not adapt to it.
Also, the soil of Arizona is very good and modest in terms of cultivation and care requirements, so even beginners in potato cultivation will easily succeed in this environment.
In this comprehensive guide, we’re providing you with all the information you need to get the most out of your potato crop in Arizona. Keep reading!
How To Grow Potatoes In Arizona?
There are only 4 main steps that you will need to take in order to succeed in planting Potatoes in Arizona:
- Choose The Right Variety Of Potato.
- Prepare The Soil.
- Planting Potatoes.
- Harvesting And Storing Your Potatoes.
Now, let’s head to the details:
Step 1: Choose The Right Variety Of Potato
The type of potatoes that you will plant on your land is an important thing that must be done based on a good understanding of the types of potatoes, the climate, and the soil suitable for them. The types of potatoes are divided into three main types:
- Early-season potatoes.
- Mid-season potatoes.
- Late-season potatoes.
,he terms early/mid/late refer to how quickly a potato will ripen based on climatic conditions:
Early potatoes are those that are planted in late winter and early spring in spring and ripen in early summer. It can be harvested after 75 to 90 days after planting.
It takes a longer time to ripen, as it will be ready in the middle of summer. It is harvested after 90 to 120 days of planting.
It takes the longest time to grow and is harvested in late summer and early fall. It takes about 120 to 130 days to mature.
So you need to know how to balance the length of time plants need to mature with the type of weather in your area. And since the climate of the state of Arizona is warm, it is characterized by mild winters and hot summers.
The coldest months are from November to February, in which you should avoid planting potatoes. The temperatures begin to rise to start from mid-February, which is the ideal time for planting potatoes in Arizona.
This early warm weather makes the early and mid-season potato varieties which grow faster (60-90 days) the appropriate choice for planting in Arizona.
Potato Varieties That Grow Well In Arizona
Here are 4 main types of potatoes that are most suitable to grow in Arizona:
The Yukon Gold potato is an early crop. Its seed potatoes mature in only 80 to 95 days after planting and produce a bountiful crop. Yukon Gold potatoes are very popular for their good flavor that comes with a tender yellow flesh with a good flavor.
It is suitable for many cooking purposes, as it is great for baking, boiling, chopping, and frying. 
They are also early potatoes that are harvested after 80-100 days. These potatoes are multi-purpose, as their delicious flavor can be enjoyed by frying, boiling, mashing, or baking.
You’ll enjoy the flavor of Kennebec when stir-fried because its creamy flesh browns and delivers an incredibly rich taste.
is an early maturing potato variety that is smooth, and oblong with shallow eyes. They are delicious boiled or pureed, but are only good baked.
It is also an early variety that produces plump potatoes. They are considered an excellent baked potato.
- The Ultimate Guide To Growing Potatoes In Colorado.
- A Step- By-Step Guide To Growing Russet Potatoes In Texas.
Step 2: Prepare The Soil
Arizona’s soil is characterized by high levels of clay. Clay soil is often referred to as the best type of soil for almost all plants. But it is very alkaline and potatoes need an acidic soil with a pH of 4.8 to 5.5. So the soil must be tested to set the required acidity level
Also, the soil of Arizona is low in nutrients, which requires the addition of organic materials and fertilizers in order for the potato plants to obtain the required nutrition with water and nutrients.
Step 3: Planting Potatoes
The quality of seed potatoes is very important, so choose them carefully from the garden store. Do not grow potatoes that you buy from the market, as they are not suitable for cultivation because they are treated with chemicals to prevent germination and diseases.
In addition, the potato seeds that you buy from the garden store are guaranteed to be completely disease-free and of high quality. Sow the potato seeds in deep soil so that the soil is 4 cm deep under the seeds, then bury them again with 3 cm of soil.
The soil must be wet, but not too wet, because this may spoil the seeds, so the soil must be light and well-drained so as not to retain large amounts of water. Take care of your plants and watch them well. Potatoes do not need much water, they should be watered when the top surface layer is dry
Potatoes need nutrient-rich soil, so fertilize your soil with compost or commercial fertilizer such as superphosphate fertilizer, Bonimil.
You might be interested in: what crops grow best in volcanic soil?
Potatoes Diseases In Arizona
Diseases affecting potatoes in Arizona are often the same as common potato diseases. which can be prevented by:
- Using certified high-quality potato seeds.
- Allowing sufficient time for the leaves to dry throughout the day after watering.
- Sterilizing tools and equipment so as not to allow the transmission of infection.
- Using appropriate preventive pesticides
Step 4: Harvesting And Storing Your Potatoes
New potatoes will be harvested when the leaves begin to turn yellow and for another 2 to 3 weeks, starting 60 to 70 days after they are planted. While large, mature potatoes are harvested about 2 to 3 weeks after the plant leaves turn yellow, about 15 weeks have passed since they were planted and the leaves begin to fade and die.
The New Potatoes
You can harvest the new potatoes, by gently lifting the plants up with your hands or a shovel or garden fork hand. Take the potatoes that you see fit and place the plant in its place and firm the soil around it until the remaining tubers grow.
Do not leave the plant exposed to the sun for a long time, but return it to the soil quickly. because the direct sun leads to the formation of a toxic substance in the potato and turns it green.
The Main Crop
The potatoes you have left will grow and become mature 2 to 3 weeks after the plants turn yellow. The vines may die off on their own, or you can cut the stems to stop the growth and stimulate harvest.
Do not water potato plants between the time of plant death and harvest, to allow the dry period, which is an important period for drying and hardening of the skins, which is a very important point for long storage of potatoes later. Potato crops should be stored in a dry and dark place for one to two weeks.
After two weeks, the potatoes should be moved to a place with moderate humidity and ventilation and a cooler temperature – 35° to 40° F – for extended storage.
What Month Do You Plant Potatoes In Arizona?
You can plant potatoes in the middle or at the end of February when the frost has passed and the weather has started to get warm.
How Long does it take for potatoes to grow in Arizona?
Early or medium crops of potatoes are the main crops that are grown in Arizona, which can be harvested 70 to 110 days after planting.
How often do you water potatoes in Arizona?
Potatoes do not need a lot of water. As mentioned above, they only need about 1 to 2 inches of water per week. Where it leads to corruption. Watering should also be stopped when the foliage begins to yellow.
What type of potatoes grows best in Arizona?
Potatoes that ripen early such as Yukon Gold, Kennebec, Red Norland, and Rosette Norkota.