Potatoes are one of mankind’s stable crops and seed is available to the consumer which is disease resistant and offers prolific production. 1kg of potato seed can produce up to 20kg of potatoes in
Planting season for seed potatoes is from March through to September. Potatoes prefer moist and acidic soil with a pH of less than 6. Once you have purchased your seed potatoes you should harden them prior to planting. To do this lay them in a dry dark area for approximately two weeks. Potatoes with more than one eye may be cut leaving plenty of flesh and allowing them to dry for 24 hours. To prepare your crop area use Searles Compost or Rocky Point Active 8 as your base. Then cover with a layer of straw, sugar cane or Lucerne which will provide the required nutrients and help retain moisture. Ideally, the soil should be prepared a fortnight prior to planting.
Position the seed potatoes 10cm within the compost, allowing 30cm between seed and 80cm between rows. Push the compost from the base, creating a mound over the potato seed. Continue to mound more compost and mulch as the potato grows. Covering the potatoes encourages a heavier crop and ensures they are not exposed to light. Water once a week between the rows. Stop watering when the lower leaves turn yellow. Once the foliage has withered and died dig the potatoes and store in a cool dry spot. For new potatoes harvest one month after flowering. They must be consumed immediately.
Another popular method for the gardener with limited space is the use of tyres. Stack tyres two high. Place potato seed in compost and cover with mulch. As potato plant grows stack more tyres while adding mulch and compost. When ready to harvest simply push tyres over!