Potatoes - Organic Growing Guides for Teachers


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Potatoes - Organic Growing Guides for Teachers + Students + Schools - One Pot Pledge

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Potatoes - Organic Growing Guides for Teachers

  1. 1. Photography © Ray Spence Potatoes Photography © Ray Spence Potato plants are fast growing, with lots of dark green foliage. Some produce attractive flowers. The potato tubers are produced underground. Potatoes are grown from bought ‘seed potatoes’ rather than from seeds. Leave these in a cool light place to produce tiny shoots before planting. There are lots of types to choose from - waxy for salads, floury for mash, or in between. Try one plant in a 25-30 cm pot or 2 or 3 in a 45cm pot to give a few delicious servings in around 10 weeks. Suggested pot size: 30cm across and deep for one plant. 45-50cm for 3 plants. ‘Early’ and ‘Second early’ varieties are best for pot growing. Some to try: ‘Charlotte’ - waxy yellow flesh, good for salads and boiling ‘Mimi’ – small, round, red skinned, good for boiling whole ‘Orla’ - white skinned; good early cropper Plant 1. a 3cm layer of large gravel, or broken up Put polystyrene into the bottom of the pot. 2. Add 15cm moist potting compost. 3. Gently push the seed potato into the compost, with the shoot end uppermost. Add a little more compost to cover if necessary. Spring Feb Mar Summer Apr May Jun Jul Before planting, put the seed potatoes in a cool light place till they produce short shoots. Plant at the bottom of a large pot, adding more compost as the shoots grow. Stop when compost is 2cm below the top of the pot. Grow in a light, airy position outside. Watering tips: Give pots a thorough soaking when you do water. Plants will need more water as they get bigger. Support: Just let plants flop, or support with strings stretched between sticks around the edge of the pot. 1. After 9 weeks or so, feel down into the compost to see if the potatoes are big enough. They can be eaten at any size. 2. Empty out the pot and collect up the potatoes. 3. Store them in a cool, dark place until eaten. Eat Growing tips Compost to use: Potting compost, organic and peat- free. 1. shoots grow, gradually As fill up the pot around the shoots, leaving the shoot tips showing. 2. Stop when the compost is 3cm below the rim of the pot. Grow Potatoes Protection: Move indoors, or cover with a few sheets of newspaper or a light cloth overnight if frost is likely. Autumn Aug Sep Oct Nov Feeding: If a good quality compost is used there is no need to feed. Otherwise use a general organic liquid feed in the summer. Sow indoors Sow outdoors Harvest Protect from cold www.gardenorganic.org.uk The One Pot Pledge® concept was devised by Food Up Front, the urban food growing network. Trade Mark registered to Food Up Front. Garden Organic is a registered charity no. 298104