Do you have budding potato Scraps that you’re sick of and want to get rid of? Wait, don’t do this. These sprouting scraps are great seeds for growing potatoes efficiently! Really it can be done easily, follow us on our step-by-step guide to learn how to grow delicious red potatoes from potato scraps.
How To Grow Red Potatoes From Scraps?
You can simply grow red potato scraps easily by following these simple steps:
- Preparing Red Potato Scraps For Planting
- Planting Red Potato Scraps
- Caring For Your Red Potato Plant Which includes Fertilization And Watering.
- Taking Care Of Diseases.
- Harvesting And Storing Your Crop.
Let’s get into the details:
I. Preparing Red Potato Scraps For Planting
A. Selecting The Right Potato Scraps
1. Identifying good candidates for scraps
The best potatoes to plant are those with sprouted eyes. so this is a good indication that they are capable of growing as full plants. and are not sprayed with growth inhibitors or received a very small amount that they were able to resist and actually succeed to germinate.
2. Avoiding scraps with diseases or damage
Obviously, the potato scraps should be of good appearance and not have signs of rupture or disease. This is extremely necessary, as using potato scraps that show mold or disease will lead to the formation of diseased plants that will produce weak crops in the end.
Also, torn or damaged potato scraps have a high possibility to be contaminated, thus growing diseased plants as well.
B. Cutting The Scraps
1. Choosing the right cutting tool
You must use a sharp sterilized knife to cut potato scraps so as not to become contaminated. You may have wondered that potatoes can be contaminated and say that they are originally grown in the soil, but this is not true.
Potatoes are easily contaminated and any pollution directly affects their growth. Even the soil in which potatoes are grown must be clean and free of contaminants.
Really, when you plant potato scraps, it is as if you are carrying out a meticulous procedure that requires you to focus on every small detail so that the planting process does not fail.
2. Cutting the scraps into sections
Cut large potatoes that are more than the size of a golf ball, so that each has at least one germination eye. preferably containing two or three eyes.
3. Leaving the sections to dry
Potato sections should not be planted immediately after cutting. as they are damp and may rot when planted in the soil. so leave them to dry and harden in a warm place for about three days to a week before planting.
C. Preparing The Soil For Planting
1. Choosing the right soil type
Potatoes can grow only in light, loose soil, with a pH of 4.5 to 5.5, and it should be well drained.
2. Removing rocks and debris
Prepare your soil and remove any rocks or impurities from it, as they may hinder the growth of potatoes.
3. Adding organic matter
Mix your soil well with organic fertilizer before planting. it will act as food for the potatoes that they feed on to grow and form plants and potatoes.
II. Planting Red Potato Scraps
A. Choosing The Right Time To Plant
1. Explaining the ideal planting time
The best time to plant red potatoes is when the frost begins to pass and the weather begins to warm. Plant potatoes in late winter when the soil temperature is from 45 to 50 Fahrenheit.
2. Avoiding frost and extreme weather
You must avoid frost, as frost leads to the cessation of potato growth. Put in your mind that Although potatoes can tolerate moderate cold, it does not tolerate severe frost at all.
B. Planting The Scraps
1. Digging the planting holes
Dig a hole about 8 to 10 cm deep. Do not throw the soil you dug up and put the soil aside. as it will come into play in the following steps.
2. Adding fertilizer to the holes
Mix the soil you dug with fertilizer, then put about 4 cm of it in the hole.
3. Placing the potato scraps in the holes
Stack the potatoes, Make sure that each potato has an area of about 1 square foot to grow in it comfortably.
4. Covering the scraps with soil
Cover potato scraps with 3 or 4 cm of fertilized soil.
C. Watering and Caring for the Potato Plants
1. Proper watering techniques
Water it with a hose with about 1 to 2 inches of water every week.
2. Fertilizing the plants
Potatoes only thrive in rich, fertile soil. So you must choose a balanced fertilizer, whether organic or chemical. The important thing is that it contains nitrogen, phosphorus, iron, and potassium, these elements are necessary for the healthy growth of potatoes.
The amount of fertilizer your soil needs can be easily calculated through the following calculation. 500 square feet of potatoes need about 12.5 pounds of balanced fertilizer that contains mainly nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium. Also, keep in mind that red potato plants require fertilization once per month.
3. Managing pests and diseases
Red potatoes are susceptible to pests and diseases that can kill plants and crops if not managed properly.
This video will show you a simple and quick explanation of the most important potato issues and ways to overcome and prevent them.
4. Staking or mulching the plants
When the potato vines have grown to about 15 cm above the soil surface, mounds of soil or organic material such as mulch or straw should be made around the potato vines. so that only the top leaves of the potato plants are protruding above the ground. This allows new tubers and new potatoes to grow down under the new mound of soil. When the potato vines reach another 6 inches above the soil, make new mounds on top of the potato stalks. The higher the mounds the more potatoes you will have.
If the weather is still cold and there is a possibility of a late frost, it is preferable to cover the young potato plants completely to protect them from frost. Staking potatoes also acts as a protection for potato plants from harmful pests, especially in the potato’s root zone.
D. Harvesting the Potatoes
1. Knowing when the potatoes are ready to harvest
red potatoes ripen within 90 to 110 days. You can know that they ripen easily by the color of the leaves. When the leaves turn yellow and the stems wither, the harvest time has come.
2. Digging up the potatoes
Dig the soil gently to avoid scratching the potatoes, and take the potatoes.
3. Properly storing the potatoes
Leave the potatoes to dry, then clean them of dirt. Then Leave the potatoes for a week in a dark, moderately warm area with good ventilation. then gradually reduce the storage temperature to about 40 to 45 degrees Fahrenheit.
It is recommended to store potatoes at high humidity because potatoes contain about 80 percent water from their content, depending on the variety, so high humidity prevents wilting. Do not lower the storage temperature below 45°F as storage temperatures below this will lead to sweetening build-up.
Tips for Successful Red Potato Growing From Scraps
Here are some simple tips to follow to ensure proper the best results possible when growing your red potatoes:
A. Proper Watering Techniques
First, let’s talk about watering:
1. Explaining how to water the plants properly
To irrigate the potato plants efficiently, you can use a watering hose while controlling the speed of the water flow. It will be very good if the amount of water specified for watering the potatoes flows from the hose slowly over 30 minutes until it gradually descends on the plants. giving an opportunity to soak the soil and saturate the roots with water.
2. Avoiding over-watering
Drainage holes will help get rid of excess water, in addition to that, your adherence to the appropriate amount of water and the number of watering times will avoid you from over-watering.
Remember to water the potatoes only when you touch the soil with your finger and find them dry.
B. Choosing the right fertilizer
Choosing the right fertilizer is quite important. This video will help you to choose the right fertilizer according to your soil conditions:
C. Managing Pests and Diseases
You really don’t want your red potatoes to be infected with pests. Pests and disease are quite annoying and can damage your whole crop. Some natural pest and disease control methods include:
- Place the plants in a sunny place for at least 7 hours a day.
- Cover plants to avoid horizons and insects.
- Grease the leaves with neem oil to act as a lubricant that prevents the adhesion of larvae and insects.
D. Harvesting the Red Potatoes
This isn’t really an important tip, but it will make your life much easier. Just use a garden fork to dig the ground gently to avoid scratching the potatoes.
Finally, if you’re interested to learn more approaches to grow red potatoes, feel free to check our article on how to grow red potatoes in water.