While you probably know the benefits of growing your own food, to actually maintain a vegetable garden seems such an imposing task. Growing potatoes in straw is a practical solution. Read on to learn how!
How To Grow Potatoes In Straw The Easy Way
Just a year ago, I too had reservations in growing vegetables or any food for that matter. Yes, I had some indoor plants and sure maintained a lawn and a flower garden, more for their aesthetic value. But veggies? uh-uh! Then I came across this method of growing potatoes in straw the lazy way and it got me lazy. Now, I’m maintaining a vegetable garden and a teeny weeny greenhouse all seasons long. You too can give vegetable gardening a kickoff by growing potatoes in straw!
Lucky for you, I am always on the lookout for the easy way to do things I have come across growing potatoes in straw. This guide here is easy to follow and actually doing it is just as easy. So make no more excuses and get on with vegetable gardening with this easy to do, growing potatoes in straw. You can do this method in this fall season for a year round harvest.
Growing Potatoes In Straw
Step 1. Chitting Potatoes
Chitting is the process of getting your potato seeds to sprout. If you have once left your potatoes long enough in the cupboard, you’ll know. But for starters, seed potatoes are available in garden supply stores.
Step 2. Preparing Soil Bed
A raised bed would be ideal for growing potatoes in and I can tell you, it’s something easy to build. You can grow more vegetables from the raised bed in the future. A good layer of loose, well-draining soil would be great.
Step 3. Planting Potato Seeds
Just give the potato seeds a push in the soil bed so they get buried a couple of inches into the soil. A space of 30 cm. to one foot from each seed would be ideal, making sure the sprouts are directed skyward.
Step 4. Laying Out Straw
You can now spread enough straw over the chitted potatoes. If you live closer to a farm, then you could get lucky with a free hay bale. But you can also get straw mulches from garden supply stores and they don’t cost much.
Step 5. Soaking Straw Bed
Give your straw a good watering so the straw gets settled in the bed. With the straw over the soil, you don’t have to worry about weeds out-competing the soil nutrients with your potato plants.
Step 6. Securing Straw Bed
You can also secure the straw with sticks by laying them over the mulch especially when it’s windy in your area. The straw mulch will also keep your soil moist and help regulate temperature especially when you’re growing potatoes this fall.
Here is a step by step video about growing potatoes in straw by HuwsNursery Video:
That was just the hard part of growing potatoes in straw. We now go to the easy part of enjoying your potato plants as you read further.
How To Increase Potato Yields
To ensure or increase potato yields, it is important to hill or earth each plant. Add more soil and mulch as they continue to grow. You may use grass clippings as additional mulch for hilling your potato plants.
When To Harvest Potatoes
Your potatoes are generally ready for harvest in three months. You can always dig up some spuds which may appear on the surface and let the rest grow in size.
How To Harvest Your Potatoes
You can also just leave your potatoes until the plant stalk had withered to harvest. One of the best things about growing potatoes in straw is the soil becomes much loose. You can just easily pick potatoes thereafter even with your bare hands.
More Tips For Growing Potatoes In Straw
One way to also determine if your potatoes are ready for harvest is when tiny flowers start appearing in your plants. The straw which has acted as mulch for your plants will also serve as compost for your soil as they decay. After your harvest, you get yourself one planting bed ready for a new potato crop or for more new vegetables.
Enjoy Your Harvest!
When you grow potatoes in straw, you’ll definitely enjoy more yields. Just wash off the dirt after harvesting and you can now take delight in serving and eating those beautiful potatoes! Mashed potatoes, anyone?
Watch this video from HuwsNursery for more details:
Most of the time, the hardest part of doing a seemingly difficult task is in starting. In growing a vegetable garden, try growing potatoes in straw first and you could be growing your own potatoes and vegetables for life.
Ready to try this? Download this FREE printable and keep track of your plants easily.
Ready now to start growing potatoes in straw? Share your thoughts in the comments below. You can also try growing potatoes in containers.
Want to stay up to date? Follow Garden Season on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest
This post was originally published in December 2016 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.