If you have a small spaced garden and would love to grow potatoes in a bucket and wonder how long it takes to grow potatoes in a bucket? Then you are in the right place. Harvesting potatoes in a container is easy, as all the tubers will be in one place.
You can grow potatoes in any container like a garbage can, potato tower, Tupperware, buckets, even a burlap or a gunnysack. The best part of growing potatoes in a bucket is that it becomes a family activity, and everyone can enjoy it.
An important thing to keep in mind!
Choose the seeds certified and disease-free, the potatoes can grow anywhere between 70 to 90 days. Some potatoes take around 120 days to harvest. In this case, you will require a long growing season.
Medium of growing
The majority of the potatoes usually grow in the garden soil, but the appropriate medium will be the one that drains; in this case, perlite can also be used to grow potatoes in a pot. If you plan to grow potatoes in rubber or a plastic bin, then make sure you are drilling drainage holes.
The ideal container for growing potatoes in a bucket.
If you are confused about which kind of container you need to use, then the best options are burlap bags, the burlaps bag drain as well as breath. No matter which container you choose, make sure that the container is spacious enough to build up the soil and allow the spuds to grow. These two are essential as they will encourage the formation of the tubers in the layer.
How Many Pounds of Potatoes You Can Grow in a 5-gallon Bucket?
Growing potatoes in 5-gallon buckets is the easiest task. The best part! You can grow the potatoes all across the season, no matter what the climate is. The potatoes take up little space to top it all, and you can move them around quickly.
Buckets are the most convenient option as they are reusable; once your first lot is harvested, you can reuse the bucket to grow potatoes. Growing potatoes in the bucket-sized 5 gallons will also allow you to have a food source during the uncertain period.
In addition to all this, growing potatoes is an enjoyable centric task, they taste great, and you can store them easily!
Let us take a look at how you can grow potatoes in a five-gallon bucket.
People love to grow potatoes, and a five-gallon bucket is a perfect size, a sit provides the right amount of depth and space. Which is why 5 gallons is an ideal size. A lot of people opt for 6-gallon bucket, but the downside of choosing those buckets is that they are more in-depth and not wider.
#1 How can I find food grade buckets?
Finding 5 gallons of food grade buckets is an easy task as you can get them for free from bakeries, donuts, or bread shops. Even a lot of hardware and gardening stores sell 5-gallon buckets.
A lot of times, a five-gallon bucket might be laying around in your garage. But before you begin, make sure that you haven’t used them for painting or other gardening stuff. To check if the bucket is food grade, turn it upside down and look at the recycling number written at the bottom.
If the numbers are 2, 4, 5, you can use them to plant your potatoes. In addition to this, if the bucket has a fork symbol that denotes “food grade plastic,” you can also use it to grow the potatoes.
#2 Start by drilling holes at the bottom
You will have to drill holes at the bottom of the bucket so that the drainage is proper. You will have to drill at least ten holes. Once the holes have been drilled, you won’t have to do anything tedious or difficult as now you can grow potatoes for years in this bucket.
#3 Then measure the fill lines
Once the holes have been drilled, start by measuring the fill lines, taking a ruler, measuring tape, and a permanent marker. Then measure 4″ that is around 10.16 cm from the bottom of the bucket and mark the line with a permanent marker. While keeping the ruler on the ground, mark another line at the height of 10″ that is 25.4cm the bottom.
#4 Start by filling the soil
Fill the bucket with soil till the 4 inches mark.
The best part of growing potatoes in a 5-gallon bucket is that you don’t have to worry about the soil’s quality. You can easily buy the bags of the potting soil. Just make sure that the soil has a great amount of compost and organic matter. Also, you wouldn’t have to buy lots of soil for growing the potatoes in a bucket.
One important that you have to keep in mind is that always grow potatoes in the soil, which is loose and drains water very well. If you are planning to use compost, you can mix it properly into the soil.
Ensure that the soil’s quality is good and try to avoid any organic fertilizer. The reason why a lot of people prefer to grow potatoes in their home is because of the way the quality, if you use quality ingredients you will get good potatoes. Always remember that you are feeding the soil and not the plant.
Another question that bothers everyone while planning to grow potatoes in buckets is done; they use seed potatoes or directly the potatoes available in the store!
To get rid of this doubt, let us understand what seed potatoes are. The purpose of seed potatoes is that they have grown to be replanted, and these potatoes have not been treated with sprout inhibitors.
If you plan to grow potatoes from seed potatoes, use those that have a disease-free certificate. Many people prefer to use the store-bought potatoes as they don’t require extra work which seed potatoes do.
Keep in mind that the store-bought potatoes are often treated with the sprout inhibitors, sprout inhibitors stop the potatoes from growing eyes and sprouts. The stores do this to keep the potatoes in stores longer, and they don’t sprout.
Remember that you won’t plant all the potatoes you have brought from the store. So, what you have to do is wait for the potatoes to start sprouting and then sow them in a bucket and grow them.
How to make the potatoes sprout faster?
If you are all excited and want to plant the potatoes immediately, but haven’t seen them sprouting, you can speed up the process.
Ways to make potatoes sprout faster
If you are excited about planting potatoes but don’t have sprouting, you can try to speed up the process. All you have to do, do the opposite of what you do to store the potatoes a little longer. Please keep them in a place with warmer temperatures or the area, which receives the maximum amount of sun rays.
You can also leave them in a bag to start sprouting, make sure they are getting enough air, and don’t begin to rot. Even if the potato is growing, never plant a potato that is rotting or mouldy.
The number of tubers you should plant in a bucket
If you are planning to use a 5-gallon bucket, plant around two potatoes. If you plan to use a 6-gallon bucket, then use two as the only difference between the buckets is the depth and width are the same.
Do I need to cut the potato into half, or I can plant the whole thing
You can plant the entire potato. You have to produce in such a manner that the sports side is facing upwards so that the plant can grow.
Use a Tater table
Though a tater table isn’t an essential step, it will help keep the bucket off the ground, which means the drainage can happen adequately and efficiently.
You can use anything like wood, bricks, scrap, etc. you will require something that will prop the bucket off the ground and allow the water to drain quickly, it also helps keep ants, insects, etc. away from the buckets. The propping will also allow the airflow to the bottom; this will reduce the rotting.
Planting the potatoes
As explained above, to grow potatoes in a 5-gallon bucket successfully, start by filling the bucket with soil at the marked level of 4.” Then proceed on by putting two potatoes in the bucket and then spaced them out, make sure that the sports side is up. Once done, proceed on to cover the dirt to the other marked line, and that is at 10.”
Once your plantation is done, water it enough, so that it reached out till the bottom. Then place the bucket on a table or a plank and leave it in the sun. The bucket should receive around 6 to 8 hours of sunlight every day.
Depending upon the season and the climate, make sure that you water the plant at least a few times a week; whenever you are watering the monitor the plant for insects, and if you find any, remove them.
Your how many pounds of potatoes you can grow in a 5-gallon bucket procedure involves one more important step: the moisture meter; you need to check the moisture level of the soil frequently till the time sprouts aren’t visible.
Media vine- the middle period
After a few weeks, you will notice that leaves have started to break out through the soil; you will also see that the sprouts have begun to come up. Make sure that you aren’t touching them or moving the soil. The stems will also take some time to break through the mud.
When you have noticed that leaves have grown to a certain height that is the bucket’s rim, proceed on to add more soil onto the top, make sure that you leave some room on the top.
The process of Hilling also includes adding leaves that are partially composed, straws, compost, etc.
The potatoes you are planning to grow will grow above the potatoes you have planted, and the potatoes will only grow as hilling happens. This is why using a five-gallon bucket is important as tubers require depth, and they grow underground.
The potatoes you are growing will grow above the potato you planted. Adding more soil through hilling enables potatoes to develop.
How will I know that the potatoes are ready to harvest?
You can harvest the potatoes when they have started to flower, but you should not as they are ready but not fully mature, they will continue to grow longer, which requires patience. Harvest the potatoes when you have noticed that the leaves have started to wilt, die, and drop. The leaves will turn yellow and brown; this indicates that the potatoes are ready to harvest.
Digging out the potatoes
You don’t have to use a digging fork. You can easily dig out the potatoes with your hands, make sure that you are doing it gently
Storing the potatoes once they have harvested
You can harvest and store the potatoes for months if required. The thing with other vegetables like arugula, kale, they need to be eaten within a few days. But in the case of potatoes, you don’t have to eat them right away, you can take your rosy time, store them in a cool and dry place, and the sunlight doesn’t reach it directly. If you plan to keep them for months, you need to cure them first.
How tall will the potato plant grow?
No matter where you plant them, be it planters, tires, containers, etc. the potato plant will grow around 100 cm tall.
Lastly, the essential question, how long does it take to grow potatoes in a bucket
Depending upon the variety of the potato, the plant will take around a minimum of three months to grow properly.
If you plan to grow potatoes in a bucket, you should start doing it right away, follow the steps mentioned above, and have potatoes to take care of your needs whenever you require.