Growing potatoes in a trashcan is an easy way to conserve on space and maximize crop production. It is a convenient method of growing potatoes for those living in apartments or renting homes where gardening is not permitted. You will be able to grow about 40 pounds of potatoes throughout the season. This method is easy to implement and can make for tasty home grown potatoes for the apartment dwelling gardener.
What You Will Need:
New Garbage Can (or sterilized used can)
Drill with ½-inch bit
Step 1: Drill numerous holes throughout the bottom of the trash can. The holes should be about ½ inch wide. Also, drill holes around the outside of the trashcan near the bottom.
Step 2: Add a layer of shredded newspaper to the bottom of the trashcan to keep the soil from spilling through the holes.
Step 3: Add a layer of gravel to the bottom to help facilitate drainage. The gravel layer should be about two inches thick.
Step 4: Add a six-inch layer of your favorite potting soil mixture, including any fertilizers or amendments that you would like to use.
Step 5: Cut up the seed potatoes into chunks with at least three eyes per chunk.
Step 6: Plant the seed potatoes in the potting soil, just deep enough to be fully covered. The potatoes should be spaced about 6 inches apart.
Step 7: Spread about an inch of potting soil over the planted potatoes and water them thoroughly.
Step 8: Allow the potatoes to sprout to a height of roughly 4-inches. At 4-inches height, add more soil to the trashcan, covering the sprouts so that only 1-inch is exposed. You will repeat this step with all new growth, until the soil reaches the top of the trashcan.
Step 9: You can periodically harvest potatoes throughout the season by gently digging into the soil and retrieving a potato. When you would like to harvest the remainder, simply tip the trashcan over onto a large tarp, pouring out all of the contents. Sift through the soil, and pick out your potatoes!
If you are doing this on an apartment porch, or another area that needs to stay clean, place a small kiddie pool down. Stack cinder blocks inside the pool and place the trashcan on top of the cinder blocks. This will allow the water to drain into the kiddie pool, rather than pooling up on the porch.