Are you a beginner at gardening and wonder how many potatoes you can grow from a single plant?
Inside this guide, I give you all the information you need to plant the perfect amount of potato seeds so you can harvest enough spuds to feed yourself or your family until the next growing season.
I also explain how to get the most yield from your potato plot and whether or not it’s wise to use store-bought potatoes for seeds, so let’s jump right in!
How Many Potatoes Grow Per Plant?
How many potatoes a plant can produce averages between three to eight potatoes per plant under ideal growing conditions. Different varieties produce more or fewer potatoes naturally as well as the size of said tubers can range from small to extra large.
If you plant four to five pounds of seed potatoes, and all grow in a healthy manner until harvest with ample hilling, you should expect a harvest return of around 125 pounds of spuds.
With the average side dish serving of potato being 1/2 a pound, you can do the math to determine how many potatoes you need for meals to last until you harvest your next crop.
How Do You Maximize A Potato Yield?
There are several ways to maximize the yield from your potato plot. The first is always to make sure you plant a whole seed potato or a cube that three or more eyes, which helps produce more viable plants.
Don’t worry about plants crowding up. As long as the soil is right, the roots and tubers will spread and grow just fine.
Using loose soil that drains well is the second way to increase potato yield. Potatoes are a root crop and need space to spread roots and grow plump tubers. Compacted soil will produce small potatoes as they struggle against the dirt to increase in size.
Proper hilling is the third way to harvest more potatoes since it forces more tubers to grow as the plant reaches for the surface sunlight. Two or three hillings during the growing season are better than one.
The fourth way to increase yield is to provide ample water and six or more hours of direct sunlight during the critical active tuber-growing stage. Never let the soil dry out, nor keep it soggy, which will rot out the growing potatoes. Use a moisture meter to keep tabs on soil conditions.
Related | Best Soil Moisture Meter Reviews
The fifth way to increase your harvest is by planting the correct variety of potato. Pontiac Red, Kennebec White, and Purple Majesty all consistently produce an abundance of potatoes.
Lastly, proper nutritional support is essential to produce the most significant crop from your potato plot.
I prefer to use a potato-specific fertilizer in the trench at planting and during mid-season to give the plant the boost they need to produce the most potatoes.
Can I Grow Potatoes From Store Bought Potatoes?
Yes, you can technically grow potatoes from the ones you buy at the store.
We have all found a forgotten potato with a sprout or two during our lifetime. You can plant this in the ground and, in theory, harvest some potatoes if you plant it during the proper growing season and tend to it correctly.
In reality, I find that the experts are right when they recommend only using certified seed potatoes in a vegetable garden.
Growers treat potatoes sold in the produce section of a grocery store with sprout inhibitors to slow down any budding during shipment and while at the store. You may find that planting seeds from these potatoes will result in weak or zero growth after weeks of waiting.
Another possible issue using store-bought potatoes for seed is that they often harbor microorganisms or diseases that can spread throughout your garden plants.
Certified potato seeds come with a guarantee that they are free of diseases that can destroy a potato crop. They also are more robust, which will increase the plant’s yield. Lastly, certified seed means no sprout inhibitor treatment, which ensures vigorous growth.
When you know how many potatoes to expect from one plant, it’s much easier to plan your seasonal garden.
Understanding the average yield from certain potato varieties and using the best growing practices can help you achieve a very successful potato crop.
I hope you try out the tips in this guide to increase your potato yield, so you can cultivate even more spuds in the same growing space, which is a delightful bonus!