Grow potatoes by planting them at the right time, preparing the planting site, giving them enough moisture and hilling them. It takes approximately 10 weeks between planting and harvesting. To accomplish this project, you need seed potatoes, a hoe, a garden fork, compost, well-drained soil and water.
- Plant the potatoes at the right time
Prepare to plant potatoes after the last frost. Start planting up to two weeks after the last frost to make sure the seed potatoes survive.
- Prepare the planting site
Find a site where the potatoes can get plenty of sunlight and that has well-drained, loamy soil. Add some compost to the soil, and work through it with a garden fork. Dig trenches in the soil that are 4 inches deep.
- Plant the potatoes
Plant the seed potatoes, which are pieces of potatoes that have at least two sprouting buds, also called eyes, on them. You can buy seed potatoes or prepare your own. Plant the potatoes in the trench with the eyes facing up and at least 12 inches between each one. Cover the seed potatoes with soil.
- Water the potatoes
Water the potatoes regularly. Seed potatoes need about 1 to 2 inches of water per week to grow. A few nightly soakings per week with a soaker hose throughout the growing season should be sufficient. Let the water soak down 8 to 12 inches for the best results. At the end of the growing season, decrease the watering, but don’t let the soil dry out completely. Keep the soil moist.
- Hill the potatoes
As the potatoes grow, cover up the roots with loose dirt. This is called hilling. You want to avoid letting the roots get too much direct sunlight, which can give the crop an unsavory taste.