Are you tired of buying flavorless store-bought red potatoes? Would you like to have an ornamental plant that adds an aesthetic view to your garden and eat good fruits from it at the same time? What an amazing thing if that actually happened! If you’re here, you’re probably wondering if you can grow your own red potatoes at home.
You can definitely do this! Growing your own red potatoes indoors not only gives you the benefit of eating healthy home grown potatoes, but you will also enjoy it the beautiful green shape of red potato leaves until the wilting and harvest period. After harvesting, you will enjoy one of the most delicious red potatoes that you ever taste.
Home-grown red potatoes are fresh and very healthy. In addition to that, it is also economical. In this article, We will wake you through the steps of cultivation of red potatoes at home and indoors. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be an expert or have any previous experience of farming before. Red potatoes are one of the best types of potatoes that can be grown at home successfully.
So, let’s start…
How To Grow Red Potatoes At Home And Indoors?
Growing your own red potatoes is a simple process that consists only of 7 steps:
- Selecting The Right Potatoes For Indoor Growing.
- Preparing The Potatoes For Planting.
- Choosing The Right Container For Indoor Potato Growing.
- Planting Your Red Potatoes Indoors.
- Caring For Your Red Potato.
- Troubleshooting Common Problems.
Let’s explain each one of the:
1. Selecting The Right Potatoes For Indoor Growing
Selecting the right red potato variant is crucial. Failing to choose a variant that suitable for home growing can result in poor outcome, or even worse, no outcome at all.
The Different Types Of Red Potatoes Suitable For Indoor Growing
There are many varieties of red potatoes, and among the best types of red potatoes that can be grown at home:
One of the main early potato varieties is a waxy potato with red skin and light yellow flesh. Its flavor is fruity and it is delicious when boiled or baked.
Another early main crop variety is a waxy red potato with an elongated body and red skin. It has a yellow, aromatic flesh that is very tasty as a roast and jacket potato, or in a gratin.
A major early potato crop, it is a long oval potato with a yellow flesh and beautiful red skin. Perfect for boiling and baking and making wedges.
Hungarian potato, Round and waxy, with red skin and white flesh. It is ideal for dumplings, soups, or purees.
Long or oval potatoes with red and yellow patterned skin, and dark yellow flesh with a fruity flavor. Very tasty mashed or roasted.
The Characteristics Of The Ideal Potato Variety For Indoor Growing
Red potatoes grow wonderfully at home, as we mentioned, so the choice will be yours. There are two main factors that you have to consider when choosing the type of red potatoes that you will plant.
- Culinary Uses Of Potatoes
First, think about what you want to use your crop for. As each type of potato is good in certain cooking recipes as we explained above, there is one that is ideal for frying and another for mashing or baking, etc.
- Potato Ripening Time
Another important factor is how long the potatoes will take to ripen. Potatoes are categorized into three different groups depending on the number of days they take to ripen: early takes 75 to 90 days to ripen, mid-season 95 to 110, and late potatoes 120 to 135. Red potatoes are usually early or intermediate crops, their harvest range extends widely from the first 75 to 120 days.
2. Preparing The Potatoes For Planting
How To Prepare Seed Potatoes For Planting?
Before everything else, you should buy seed potatoes from farmer’s markets or nurseries where they are reliable and disease-free. As planting potato seeds is a long procedure that requires effort and costs. So, you must invest in high-quality seeds in order to finally get satisfactory results from the crop.
After buying potato seeds, divide them into two parts, the small seeds less than the size of a golf ball, and the larger potatoes. After this, you have to chop the large group of seed potatoes to smaller pieces.
The Importance Of Chitting And How To Do It Correctly
Potato seed cutting is one of the important vital factors in successful potato cultivation. Cutting potatoes helps to sprout before planting, which accelerates the growth of potato plants.
Not cutting large potatoes may lead to a halt in their growth and the appearance of gaps in the rows. where the seed cannot obtain food in an appropriate manner due to its large size and therefore may not be able to sprout and germinate. Also, cutting potatoes has an economic aspect as well.
You can use just a few seeds to plant the same area and get the same amount of crop in the end. Cut the seeds using a sharp and sterile knife, and make sure that each piece contains two or three eyes for budding.
Leave the cutted potato to dry in a warm place from 5 to 10 days before planting.
If you only have the eye, check out our guide on how to grow red potatoes from eye.
3. Choosing The Right Container For Indoor Potato Growing
The Different Types Of Containers Suitable For Indoor Potato Growing
There are many types of potato-growing containers such as burlap bags and smart pots made of cloth, but potatoes can be grown in any bucket or container available to you, even garbage bins.
Provided that they are opaque pots and have good drainage, which can be done easily by making holes for drainage in the containers available to you. Put these conditions in front of you and take a tour of your house to pick up any container that meets these conditions.
The Ideal Container Size, Shape, And Material For Growing Potatoes Indoors
A canvas or burlap cylindrical container with a container height of 2-3 feet and a capacity of 10-15 gallons.
You can read more about containers in our guide to Growing Red Potatoes in Buckets, Containers and Pots.
4. Planting Your Red Potatoes Indoors
The Ideal Soil Type And How To Prepare It For Planting
Red potatoes need light, loose, well-drained soil, acidic with a pH of 4 to 5.5. Mix the soil with compost well before you put it in the containers, then wet it with water.
How To Plant Seed Potatoes In Containers?
Prepare about 8 cm of soil, start by filling the container with about 4 cm of soil. Then, place the potato seeds on top of the soil, spacing them about 1 foot apart. Finally, cover the seeds with an additional 3 cm of soil.
The Importance Of Drainage And How To Ensure Adequate Drainage In Containers
Drainage is a very important factor in the growth of potatoes, as excess water will lead to rotting potatoes. Potatoes need soil that is moist with water and not too soggy. You can simply make holes in the container so that the drainage will work effectively.
You can make sure that the drainage is working well by observing the soil and taking a sample from it very carefully. You can use a thin stick such as a shish tawook stick to know if there is excess moisture at the bottom.
5. Caring For Your Red Potato
The Ideal Temperature, Light, And Humidity Conditions For Indoor Potato Plants
Potato containers should be placed in a place where they receive 6 to 8 hours of sunlight per day. The ideal soil temperature for growing red potatoes is 45 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit. It should increase with the growth of potatoes so that the ideal temperature for farther-growing potatoes is from 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. potatoes grow in humidity from 50% or more.
How To Water Indoor Potato Plants And How To Avoid Overwatering
Red Potatoes do not need to be watered daily, just test your soil every 5 days to check if the soil is dry or wet, put your finger in the soil and if you find the top layer of soil dry, you have to water it. Water the potato plants every 5-7 days. Prepare 2 gallons (7.5 liters) of water for each square foot of soil.
You can avoid overwatering by using a hose to pour out the specified amount of water for 20 to 30 minutes as the water will descend gradually on the plants, giving an opportunity to soak the soil and feed the roots well. Don’t worry about the excess water at the drainage holes get rid of it.
The Importance Of Fertilizing And How To Fertilize Indoor Potato Plants
Fertilization is very necessary for potatoes, as it is like the food that potato plants feed on to grow. You have to fertilize your soil with organic or chemical fertilizers two to five times during the potato growing season. Make sure that the fertilizer contains nitrogen, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, and other microelements necessary for potato growth.
Container soil can be easily composted, put compost on top of the soil and then water it with water as the compost dissolves and releases its nutrients into the soil. You can fertilize the soil once a month, provided that you stop fertilizing two weeks before the potato harvest.
6. Troubleshooting Common Problems
The Common Problems That May Arise When Growing Potatoes Indoors
Potato plants are susceptible to diseases or pests at several stages of their life cycle.
- Colorado Potato Beetle
The beetle lays eggs on the underside of the leaves and then the larvae hatch. The mother beetle and its larvae cause severe damage to the plants as they chew the leaves of the plant.
To overcome them, you have to check the plant regularly. As soon as you see a beetle (it has a hard shell with alternating black and orange stripes on the back) cut it off immediately. You can also avoid them by using oil.
Mix a tablespoon of neem oil with two cups of water and put them in a spray bottle. Spray the potato plants with this spray regularly, as the oil provides a protective layer on the leaves that prevents the adhesion of beetles.
Related Article: How To Grow Potatoes In Colorado? A Step-By-Step Guide.
- Black Dot
This disease causes dark brown spots to appear on the surface of potato fruits. It causes plant wilting and root rot, which leads to plant weakness and the production of diseased, unhealthy tubers. The best solution for a black spot is prevention as there are no chemical solutions to treat it. Once again, we assure you that buying selected, high-quality seed potatoes from reliable, reputable nurseries will avoid many problems.
- Late Blight
Dark spots appear on the leaves and stems, while white mold appears on the undersides of the leaves of plants when conditions are wet and humid. It leads to wilting of the plant and rotting of potatoes during storage.
You can use a commercial fungicide to control this disease. Make sure to consult a specialist, before doi
7. Finally, Harvesting!
Here comes the harvest time that you are waiting for, the most beautiful time in your journey in growing red potatoes. It is very simple: When the leaves of the plant turn yellow and the stems wither, you can start harvesting your crop. empty the contents of the container into the garden cart and enjoy picking your beautiful potatoes.
How To Grow Red Potatoes From Potatoes?
It is not strange, as potatoes are grown on large farms from potatoes as well. Potato seeds are basically the fruits of potatoes in their usual form. So it will be cultivated in the same way as usual, which is in short:
1. Buying seed potatoes from a nursery.
2. Cut it into pieces with 2 to 3 eyes.
3. Leave it to dry in a warm place for about 5 days.
4. Take wet soil, mix it with compost, put about 4 cm of it in a container, then put the potato seeds and cover them with another 3 cm of soil.
5. water it once a week with 1 to 2 inches of water.
6. Fertilize it once a month.
7. Watch it well and remove any insects or larvae.
8. Harvest it when the leaves of the plant turn yellow.
What Is The Best Way To Grow Red Potatoes?
plant them two weeks before the last frost in loose soil rich in compost, with the necessity to use selected seeds from nurseries or internet suppliers.
Can I Grow Red Potatoes From Store-Bought Red Potatoes?
Yes, but it is not recommended. Rather, it is preferable that you invest your efforts in reliable, disease-free seeds, you can buy them from planting stores.
Also, if you’re interested in alternative method, feel free to read our guide to growing red potatoes from scraps.
How Many Red Potatoes Will One Plant Produce?
one plant can produce 10 to 15 potatoes.