Everybody. This is especially great for kids and those starting ‘grow your own’ projects.
Give someone a potato: raw, no packaging, and no fuss (and no batteries!).
Boil it? Mash it? Stick it in a stew?*
Or as we are saying here, plant it and turn one potato into a plate full of them!
Grow your potatoes in an open, sunny area outside.
Start your potato growing adventure early in the year, in January, February or March and you will be able to dig up fresh potatoes just a few months later in the summer and autumn.
All you really need is your potato and a spade (or a big pot).
Start by leaving your potato indoors in a warm and light place out of direct sunlight for about six weeks, allowing it to grow 2.5 cm-long sprouts – a process called ‘chitting’.
Then plant this ‘chitted’ potato outside towards the end of March approximately 10 cm deep in the soil (a pot, tub or dustbin will work too provided there are drainage holes and it is at least 30 cm deep and wide). The ‘eyes’ (or ‘chits’) of the potato should point to the sky.
A little bit of care and maintenance by ‘earthing up’ is essential to prevent your potatoes becoming green and inedible.
Natural predators such as hedgehogs and birds will help to protect your potato plant from slugs.
Harvest your crop (“dig ‘em up!”) within 12 – 22 weeks as the stalks die down, celebrate your success and enjoy your home grown, nutritious and fresh potatoes.
How will you cook yours…?
It’s a fun way to get closer to food production and understand the growing season.
You can grow lots of potatoes in small spaces and they are one of our staple foods – how often do you eat potatoes in one form or another?
Giving a potato would certainly make an interesting ice breaker with the new neighbours or at your next business meeting…
“One potato, two potato, three potato, four…”
Have a growing contest at school. Who can grow the most potatoes, grow the heaviest plant in a tub or design the winning plant container?
* Don’t eat green potatoes.
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