When I got rid of my traditional garden last year and, instead, started growing my vegetables in box gardens, one thing I had an issue growing was potatoes. The box gardens just weren’t deep enough. As a result, I realized I either would have to plant them in the ground or not grow them at all and, ultimately, I picked the latter.
However, since potatoes are a pretty big part of our diet for a variety of reasons, I decided I didn’t want to skip growing them this year. But, instead of planting them in the ground, I decided to follow my brother’s advice and grow them in buckets. And, there are three reasons for that.
First, the buckets give me the same conveniences as the box gardens. I’m able to control what kind of soil I put in them, don’t have to worry about weeds and can even decide how much drainage I want the buckets to have. Basically, it’s the same convenience as a box garden without having to build a box. In fact, I didn’t even need to buy the buckets since I already had a bunch of them.
Another reason I like using the buckets is I can move them. As I’ve mentioned in the past, my backyard has quite a bit of shade and the shade moves as it gets later in the year. By having my potatoes be mobile, I’m able to move them where they will get the most sun. This means my plants won’t die as early as they normally do.
Last, using buckets makes harvesting the potatoes much easier. I no longer need to dig out my pitchfork when it’s time to dig up potatoes. Instead, I just dump out the buckets (I re-use the soil in my box gardens) and find the potatoes that way. It speeds up the time it takes to pick them and we are much less likely to miss any of them (something that used to happen quite a bit because we would forget to dig in a certain spot or wouldn’t dig deep enough).
So far, this move seems to be paying off. The plants are as healthy as I’ve ever grown and, at least from the test bucket I dumped out a couple days ago, we are getting the same number of potatoes. And, thanks to the reasons I mentioned above, this is definitely something I plan on doing again in the future.