how do you plant potatoes where the eyes have sprouted....up or down with the sprouts?

0 votes
asked Apr 19, 2013 by Marti Hidd
I bought a bag of potatoes at the store, used half of them & forgot about them.  The potatoes eyes sprouted and are now 12-18"

long. I hate to snip off the runners, but don't know how to go about planting them to produce more potatoes.  The sprouted

runners are in excellant condition.  Please advise..This is why I came to this site.

1 Answer

+1 vote
answered Apr 19, 2013 by Mark Fenney
The runners are the shoots with leaves on, if you are going to gerow them in a bucket, bin, or a sack, put a few inches of dirt in the bottom. Place the potato on the surface with shoots/runners facing up & cover with a few more inches of dirt, once the shoots apear around 3-4 inches, cover with more dirt. Do this until the container is full, then wait until after flowering & the leaves & stems start to wither, at this stage the potatoes should be ready to harvest. Hope that helps? I grow them that way all the time & use normal potatoes, not the seed type.
Yes! The only reason seed potatoes are separate from regular potatoes is the latter may potentially contain viruses that would cripple the following generation (and potentially the subsequent ones, if you grow them in the same soil). Aphids are a vehicle for viruses and they're prone to attack potatoes, unless they're grown in controlled situations or in areas where night temperatures prevent the presence of aphids: in Italy, for example, seed potatoes are traditionally grown either under plastic tunnels or at 1000+ metres (3000+ ft) a.s.l.
So I would only recommend growing potatoes from leftover produce in such conditions or for amateur purposes.
Yes I always use fresh compost for my potatoes, tomatoes & peppers, I should have said that. Thanks for your input Dulcamara, I didn't know that about aphids spreading viruses & I've never seen them on my potato plants but I'll be on the lookout for them now.