Botanical Name: 

Solanum tuberosum

Plant Type: 


Hardiness Zone: 


Soil pH: 


Sun Exposure: 

Full Sun

Soil Type: 



  • Plant seed potatoes (pieces of whole potato or a small whole potato, with at least 2 eyes per piece) 0-2 weeks after last spring frost.
  • If you are cutting up potato pieces for planting, do so a 1-2 days ahead of time. This will give them the chance to form a protective layer, both for moisture retention and rot resistance.
  • You may start planting earlier, as soon as soil can be worked, but be aware that some crops will be ruined by a frost.
  • Spread and mix in rotted manure or organic compost in the bottom of the trench before planting.
  • Plant seed potatoes one foot apart in a 4-inch deep trench, eye side up.
  • Practice yearly crop rotation.
  • See our video on how to grow potatoes in a trash can, the easiest ever container garden!
  • Before planning your garden, take a look at our plant companions chart to see which veggies are compatible.


  • Potatoes thrive in well-drained, loose soil.
  • Potatoes need consistent moisture, so water regularly when tubers start to form.
  • Hilling should be done before the potato plants bloom, when the plant is about 6 inches tall. Hoe the dirt up around the base of the plant in order to cover the root as well as to support the plant. Bury them in loose soil. The idea is to keep the potato from getting sunburned, in which case they turn green and will taste bitter.
  • You will need to hill potatoes every couple of weeks to protect your crop.


  • Aphids
  • Flea Beetles
  • Leaf Hoppers
  • Early/Late Blight
  • Potato Scab: Most likely cause by soil with high pH. Remember: Potatoes like acidic soil (do not plant in soil with a pH higher than 5.2). Dust seed potatoes with sulfur before planting.


  • Dig potatoes on a dry day. Dig up gently, being careful not to puncture the tubers. The soil should not be compact, so digging should be easy.
  • New potatoes will be ready for harvest after 10 weeks, usually in early July.
  • You should harvest all of your potatoes once the vines die (usually by late August), or the potatoes may rot.
  • Make sure you brush off any soil clinging to the potatoes, then store them in a cool, dry, dark place. The ideal temperature for storage is 35 to 40°F.
  • Do not store potatoes with apples; their ethylene gas will cause potatoes to spoil.
  • Whether you dig your own potatoes or buy them at a store, don’t wash them until right before you use them. Washing potatoes shortens their storage life.



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I have 1 potato plant in a

I have 1 potato plant in a container. 2 weeks ago I took a few delicious ones out and reburied the plant. Now it's original growth is almost completely died off. A shoot from the base of the plant has now grown to equal size of the original and just flowered. If I wait to harvest all at once will the original ones be rotten? Should I harvest now and have the newest ones be too young?

I'm wondering if you've ever

I'm wondering if you've ever tried or know about planting short season potatoes in the garlic plot (after garlic has been harvested in early July) for a fall potato harvest. I live in MA and am trying to make the best use of raised garden beds.. If I base last frost date on your chart, it's the first week of October. If the first comes earlier can I cover the plants at night? Thanks!

There are potatoes that can

There are potatoes that can be planted in late summer and will mature in about 120-135 days. Katahdin, Kennebec, Bintje and fingerling potatoes are all suitable. You can cover the tops if you get an early frost.

When harvesting, is there a

When harvesting, is there a way to determine by sight, which is(was) the "seed" potato that I should not eat? Will it be the only potato which has growth (stalk?) coming out of it?

Yes—your seed potato will

Yes—your seed potato will have a stalk coming out of one end. If you plant pieces of potato (pieces with "eyes") the seed portion will be the one with the flt surface where it was cut before planting.
Don't eat the seed potato. Put it into your compost; it has done its job.

Hi there, I live in Alberta,

Hi there,
I live in Alberta, Canada - I planted "late season" potatoes just over a month ago. I have super tall, green leafy stems, some of which are about to flower - I have never planted potatoes before. Do I dig for potatoes now, or do I wait until they have all flowered?

Hi Kelly, We're here to help!

Hi Kelly, We're here to help! You do not harvest your potatoes until those vines have died. After you harvest them, they can sit for a week or two at 65° to 70° F to cure. Then store them  in a root cellar or where the temperature will be 35° to 40° F if you want them to keep through the winter.

First time planting potatoes.

First time planting potatoes. Bought Burbank Russet seed potatoes. Planted them on July 5th. Tall and green. I have not done anything else, except plant them. There were no instructions with the potatoes. I am in Ottawa, Canada, Zone 4. They are in partial shade. Do I need to hill them up? When should they be ready to harvest?

Hello) Also a first timer

Also a first timer here at potatoes, if I bury a cut up potatoe and its started giving roots, is it ok to put it back or is that the end of my seed)

I just dug up some golden

I just dug up some golden Yukon's for diner. Some of the potatoes have brown spots in the middle and they are hollow. what am I doing wrong its the second year that its happened . what am I doing wrong

It sounds like hollow heart

It sounds like hollow heart which is caused by rapid growth of the potato after a period of stress. The center dies out and pulls apart. It is not a disease but is caused by abrupt changes in growing conditions and sometimes by cold soil. Try to make sure your potatoes get an even supply of moisture and wait til the soil warms up to at least 58 degress before planting.

HELP! My red potatoes are

My red potatoes are already starting to get a little soft. I brushed them off, but didn't wash them. They are stored in a gunny sack in our mudroom (the coolest room in the house). Is there something I can do? Am afraid they'll start rotting, and won't last through the winter.

Harvesting but constantly raining

I'm in the middle of my potato harvest but its been constantly damp and raining for 8 days. So are they in danger of rotting because of the rain? Should i go ahead and pull them up during rain?

potato harvest in wet conditions

Harvesting potatoes in wet conditions increases the chances for rot in storage; yet, leaving them sitting in soggy soil can also encourage diseases. If you must harvest them at this time, keep them separate from any vegetables/potatoes that were harvested in dry conditions. Handle them gently to avoid damaging them. Pat dry and place them in an area with excellent ventilation to help them to dry off. Make sure that they are relatively clean (but do not wash them!), and wipe off soil on them that may harbor diseases. Keep the temperature around 50-60F for 2 to 3 weeks to cure; normally, you’d cure them in higher humidity (85-95 percent), but if they are already wet, a less humid environment might be safer. Higher temperatures will encourage bacteria. After curing, lower the temperature for long-term storage to around 40F, and keep monitoring for diseases; discard any that show signs of trouble. Good luck!

potato plants

i have small green tomato shape/size seeds growing on my potato plants are these seeds and can i plant them

These tomato-size green fruit

These tomato-size green fruit are poisoness and should not be eaten. You can save the ripe seeds inside the potato fruit and plant them. It would take many years for the seeds to develop into potatoes. and you would not get the sametype of potatoes as the parent plant. These seeds are mostly used by breeders who are hoping to come up with a new potato variety.