1 Potato, 2 Potato, 3 Potato ….


Kitchen gardening

1 Potato, 2 Potato, 3 Potato ….

“Potatoes are normally considered part of a staple diet, but at R 60.00 a bag – they are fast becoming a luxury”, says Robert Stodel, MD of Stodels Nurseries. “It is hardly surprising that more and more people are starting to go back to Mom’s way – that of planting and creating their own vegetable garden.”

You can produce healthy, fresh potatoes within a very short period of time for only 20% of the present price. Not only is it much cheaper, but it is fun to collect your own potatoes for dinner in the evening.

Rob Stodel gives readers the lowdown on how to grow potatoes.

  • Select a suitable area in your garden to grow your own potatoes.
  • Dig a trench roughly two meters long by 60cm wide and 20cm deep (one spade deep).If you are wanting to plant  up more than one trench space it  80cm apart.
  • Dig in lots of compost or any other organic material, about one 15dm bag per square meter. This is to prepare and nourish the soil.
  • Add bonemeal, 2.3.2 fertilser and agricultural lime (one handful per square meter) and mix with the compost in the trench.
  • Level the area and plant seed potatoes15cm apart, with rows or trenches 80cm apart.
  • Recommended seed potatoes varieties are ‘Terragold’ and ‘BP1’, available from nurseries or agricultural co-ops.
  • Keep soil or trench moist for the first two weeks and  water every second day after that.
  • Feed the plants every second week with Sea-Gro, Nitrosol or 3.1.5 fertilizer. (It has been established, however that feeding with a liquid fertilizer is much more effective than a granular one).

Now watch the space in your garden. You will be able to harvest your first crop of potatoes in 6 – 8 weeks time.

Just because you live in a flat, doesn’t mean that you can’t grown your own potatoes. In this case, use a car tyre or a container filled with soil and organic mixture or compost and work in bonemeal or super phosphate. Plant roughly 8 seed potatoes in the tyre or container and enjoy your fresh produce within 6 – 8 weeks.

Happy planting and enjoy the ‘vegetables’ of your labour.