Is it True That You Can Grow a Potato Plant from a Regular Potato?
Is it true that you can grow a potato plant from a regular potato? How is this done?
It's best to grow potatoes (Solanum) from specially grown seed potatoes that are certified disease-free. The potatoes you purchase in the grocery store may have been treated with a sprout inhibitor to prevent them from sprouting in your pantry. However, if you have some potatoes that are beginning to sprout (the "eyes" have swollen, whitish shoots beginning to develop), simply plant a piece of the sprouting potato in the ground or in a roomy pot covered with 3 inches of soil. Within 2 weeks, green shoots should emerge. These will grow into bushy plants, and after 3 months or so, new spuds will develop belowground.
Potatoes are ready to harvest when the plants begin to turn yellow and die back. Most potatoes sprout quickly in spring when kept at room temperature, but the type of potato makes a difference if you want to harvest good tubers. The small red potatoes often sold as "new" potatoes are fast and fun to grow. Large baking potato plants take much longer to mature and often produce poorly in areas where hot summer weather prevails.