In today’s world there are so many ways for one to procure excellent produce and one of those ways is growing the goods in your own backyard! For most this may seem like a daunting task, full of bug sprays and broken fingernails, but at the end of the day it is well worth the time and effort! When you begin your wonderful journey into vegetable gardening it is always a good idea to research different growing methods. Here the art of growing vegetables in a burlap (or whatever semi breathable yet durable bag you can procure!) bag will be explained in depth.
As with any planting season you need to be sure that the threat of frost or snow is completely erased from your local forecast. You can usually check this in your local almanac, but typically you can notice the trend a few weeks after spring begins. You will need to find a place in the area of your choice that receives no less than 6 to 10 hours of nice, warm, direct sunlight. Potatoes require great amounts of watering and even more of healthy, bright sunlight!
The first step is finding yourself a good, breathable, sturdy bag. This must be a bag that can easily accommodate your growing plant, its fruit, and the required soil and watering. Burlap is usually a great choice and can be found at almost any outdoor supplies store or supermarket in your area. Once you have your chosen bag it is time to plant your vegetable!
First you will need to cut the seedling potatoes into 5 chunks weighing in at or around 2 ounces a piece. If your seedling potatoes are small, typically that of a lime, you may use the potato in whole. Starting with a potato that has already cultivated “eyes” is a good idea as this will speed your time along just a bit. It is not necessary though.
Next in the list of “to-dos” you will need to prepare your soil. It is usually much easier to place several shovel, or bags if you are using potting soil, fulls into a large tub or wheelbarrow. Any will do. Now it is vital to reap a noteworthy harvest that you fertilize your soil. If the soil you have on hand or have purchased does not include fertilizer then you will need to add some. Using granulized fertilizer is best as it will slowly disperse through your bag as you water and grow your plant.
Now you will need to separate out about one third of the soil. The remainder you can return to a storage article as you will need it to add to your bag as the plant grows through the season. Once you have done this you will need to prep your bag for planting!
Fold down the top of the bag into about a four inch cuff. A little more or a little less is just fine, however your potato plant will yield only within the boundaries the bag sets for it. Typically the more room, the more the crop will yield. Fill with 3 to 5 inches of soil depending on the size of your bag. Place the potato chunks on the top of the first layer of soil then add an additional 3 to 5 inches. Make sure that your potato chunk is covered entirely as the sun will dry the seedling out and nothing will grow.
As your plant grows you will need to add more soil to keep the root of the plant covered. This is typically around an eight inch stalk height. Add more soil to just under the first set of foliage. Continue this practice until the leaves begin to turn yellow and the stalk becomes wilted or brittle. Once this occurs do not water the plant anymore. Leave the bag to sit and dry out for roughly one to two weeks. When finished dump the entire bag and harvest your hard earned potatoes!
The typical potato bag yields anywhere from seven to thirteen pounds of potatoes. This can vary depending on the size of your bag. Remember as always to keep the soil within the bag nice and damp. Potatoes grow at an optimal rate in nice warm and damp conditions! Happy Gardening!