Many people want to grow delicious russet potatoes in their homes to enjoy them in various cooking recipes and provide for their family’s needs. But they often do not have enough space to do so. Indeed, space is the biggest obstacle to growing potatoes in homes.
But, with potato growing bags, the matter has become different. These bags provide an excellent solution for those who lack large spaces. You only need a small place to put in the bags to enjoy your interesting journey in growing russet potatoes.
In this article, we’re providing a step by step guide on how to grow your own russet potatoes in potato bags. Keep reading..
How To Grow Russet Potatoes In A Potato Bag?
To grow russet potatoes in a potato bag, you need to follow the following steps:
- Prepare The Bag.
- Prepare The Soil Needed.
- Prepare The Seeds And Plant Them.
- Care For Your Russet Potato Plant Carefully. (Watering – Fertilization – Disease Control)
- Harvest And Store Your Russet Potatoes.
Don’t worry about the steps, we will explain each one of them in details.
I. The Preparation Phase
The very first step to growing your own russet potatoes is to prepare your items carefully. This step is crucial because preparing the items correctly will make everything much easier later on.
A. Selecting The Right Type Of Bag
We usually select the bag according to two factors: Size and Material:
1. Size Of The Bag
Usually, potatoes are grown in bags of 10 to 15 gallons, but since russet potatoes are large in size, it is often preferable to plant them in larger bags. Bags with a capacity of 15 to 20 gallons will be very good.
2. Material Of The Bag
Potato bags are prepared to meet the requirements of potato growth. They are often made from a material similar to plastic cloth, burlap, cardboard, or non-woven geotextile.
If you don’t want to buy a specialized potato bag from the garden store. You can recycle any sturdy bag you have and use it to grow potatoes. even if it is a garbage bag, provided that it is durable and can bear the weight of the soil and plants. You should also make holes in the bag for drainage.
Related Article: The Ultimate Guide To Growing Russet Potatoes In Containers.
B. Preparing The Soil For Planting
You really do want to pay attention to the type of soil you’re using. Getting the wrong soil type can lead to no results at all:
1. Choosing The Right Type Of Soil
Russet potatoes need loose light and acidic soil with a pH of 4.5 to 5.5 pH.
2. Adding Compost And Fertilizers To The Soil
Russet potatoes need soil rich in nutrients, so they must be well-fertilized. When planting potatoes, fertilize the soil with nitrogen-containing fertilizers, which is important at the beginning of the growth of Russet potatoes.
3. Preparing The Soil For Planting
The soil should be wet and not dry or too soggy. as dryness of the soil leads to the cessation of potato growth, and excessive moisture leads to the rotting of potatoes.
I know that this is the moment that you’ve all been waiting for. The planting phase consists of 3 main steps:
- Choosing The Right Russet Potato Seeds.
- Preparing Them.
- And Finally, Planting Them.
A. Choosing The Right Seed Potatoes
To choose the right russet potato seed you need to check 2 things:
1. Selecting Certified Seed Potatoes
Selected reliable Russet potato seeds must be purchased from the garden store, whether online or in regular stores. where they are healthy and not chemically treated with germination-inhibiting substances or pesticides, as in the regular potatoes that we buy from the supermarket.
2. Choosing Healthy And Disease-Free Potatoes
You should choose healthy, disease-free potato seeds for getting healthy plants. Beware of planting diseased seeds, as diseases are transmitted from the seed to the plant.
B. Preparing Seed Potatoes For Planting
Preparing your seeds is quite easy, you just have to cut them and let them cure as follows:
1. Cutting Seed Potatoes Into Pieces
Cut the large russet potatoes into pieces so that each piece has two or three sprouting eyes.
2. Allowing Seed Potatoes To Cure Before Planting
Do not plant potato pieces immediately after cutting them. as this leads to rotting when placed in moist soil. Rather leave them to dry and harden for 3 to five days in a warm place before planting.
C. Planting The Seed Potatoes In The Bag
1. Placing The Seed Potatoes In The Bag
Take about 4 cm of soil and put it in the bag, then spread the potato seeds over the soil leaving spaces between each seed, one potato seed per square foot will work well.
Related Article: How Many Potatoes Does It Take To Grow Potatoes In A Potato Bag?
2. Covering The Seed Potatoes With Soil
After you put the potato seeds, cover them with another 3 cm of soil.
3. Watering The Seed Potatoes
Potato seeds are not watered at the beginning of their placement in the soil, but the soil moisture is sufficient to germinate the sprouts. Water the potatoes after a few days when the surface layer of the soil becomes dry.
III. Care And Maintenance
The caring of your russet potato plan is pretty important. Doing everything right and failing to do proper care is actually a failure. It consists of 3 main things:
Russet potatoes doesn’t need huge amounts of water. You need to water them regularly at a rate of 1 to 2 inches of water per week.
1. Choosing The Right Fertilizer
You can use the fertilizer, either liquid or granular.
Granular fertilizers are in the form of coarse powders or granules. Granular fertilizers release nutrients gradually when they become wet with water, which is excellent as it ensures balanced soil nutrition.
Liquid fertilizers are Fast-acting fertilizers, It is instantly absorbed by plants. There is no need to mention that there are two major, organic and inorganic fertilizers. Whatever fertilizer you use, it must contain:
Nitrogen is necessary for stem and leaf growth.
It should not be excessive as excess nitrogen negatively affects the growth of potato tubers.
Phosphorus helps in producing higher yields of potato tubers.
Stimulates plant growth and reduces black spots.
Improves soil growth conditions and balances its acidity.
It works to add acidity to alkaline soil.
Helps plants absorb calcium from the soil and improves the skin texture of potato fruits.
2. Fertilizing Schedule
Potatoes are fertilized 1 to 5 times during their growing season. The amount of fertilizer is determined based on the size and quality of the soil. In general, you can choose the amount of fertilizer through the following rule that is used to fertilize large lands and by which the amount of fertilizer can be determined for any area.it stated that 25 pounds of fertilizer were used for 1,000 square feet.
C. Disease And Pest Control
1. Identifying common diseases and pests that affect russet potatoes
The potato plant is susceptible to many diseases that cause losses in the potato crop. Potatoes are exposed to more than 75 non-parasitic diseases and disorders!
Alternaria, also known as early blight, Colletotrichum coccodes, Blackleg and bacterial soft rot, Black scurf and stem canker, Dry rot, Brown rot, and Common scab is the most common potato disease.
2. Methods for preventing and controlling diseases and pests
- Choose healthy, disease-free seeds.
- Putting plants in a well-ventilated place exposed to the sun for about 6 to 8 hours a day.
- Use sterile pruning and scraping tools.
- Use vegetable cover to prevent potato weeds.
- Immediately remove any infected plants and avoid any waste from them falling into the soil.
- Use pesticides to treat infected plants.
IV. Harvesting And Storage
Finally, the moment when you get paid for all your efforts! Harvesting is and easy and very enjoyable process. You just need to make sure the you do it carefully and store your russet potatoes in the right way.
A. Determining When The Potatoes Are Ready For Harvesting
Watch the plants and look for signs of an impending harvest. When the leaves of the plants begin to yellow and the stems wither. You have to stop watering the potatoes, then wait, wait a week or two, and then harvest the potatoes.
B. Harvesting The Potatoes From The Bag
1. Loosening The Soil In The Bag
Just Loosen the Soil in the bag and gently empty the contents of the bag into the garden cart and take your potato crop.
C. Storing The Potatoes
1. Preparing The Potatoes For Storage
Leave the potatoes to dry, do not leave them in direct sunlight, as they may turn green and contain a toxic substance, clean the potatoes of dirt and impurities.
2. Choosing The Right Storage Location
Place the potato crop at 55 degrees to 65 degrees Fahrenheit in a dark, well-ventilated place with a high humidity of 85 to 85 percent for a week or two.
After two weeks, the potatoes should be moved to a more relaxed location – 35° to 40° Fahrenheit to keep their shape and flavor longer.
Can You Plant Russet Potatoes From The Grocery Store?
No, Russet potatoes should not be grown from regular potatoes that you buy in the supermarket. These potatoes are chemically treated to inhibit the germination of sprouts ,so that they retain their shape for a long time on grocery shelves, and they are also sprayed with pesticides so that they can be stored for a long time without getting spoiled. So they are unhealthy When planted, where pesticides leak into the developing plants.
There is a possibility that regular potatoes will not be carriers of diseases, and therefore they will expose you to many challenges during their cultivation.
However, if it’s you’re only option, you can learn more by reading our guide on how to grow Russet potatoes from store bought potatoes.
How Many Potatoes Will One Russet Potato Plant Produce?
One russet potato plant produces about 10 to 15 potatoes.