Potatoes in Containers (the how of it all seems daunting)
I picked up some seed potatoes yesterday - Red Norland and Yukon Gold. A few are sprouting already, but I tried to choose those that didn't have as many sprouts developing yet. They are small, about egg-size. I don't intend to cut them up, but rather plant them whole. They are also kind of spongy feeling - not what I would buy for eating purposes. I don't know if this is good or bad. All the potatoes were softer so I didn't have a choice, and my theory was if they were all spongy to the touch, maybe they're supposed to be?
The bags did not say whether they were pre-treated or not, so I'm assuming they're not. I have read that they should be dipped in sulphur before planting to prevent scab. I don't know if this is necessary since I won't be planting them in the ground, but rather in containers.
My containers are 20 gallon plastic tubs. Not sure about dimensions, but just guessing they are about 2' tall, about 2.5' across at the top, narrower at the bottom, but not much.
I've read that potatoes are pretty heavy feeders, too, but shouldn't be given too much nitrogen which would result in heavy top growth, but few potatoes. What do you use to feed yours? Do you also use any lime or gypsum to sweeten the soil some?
I've read so much about planting and growing potatoes that my mind is now boggled and I'm left unsure how to proceed. Oh, when do you think I should plant them? Now? If not, how should I store them? Dark, cool spot? Hmmmm, where would that be? No garage.
I have read that I should leave the sprouts intact because trimming them off would result in a later, limited harvest, too.
How much watering should I do? When can I expect to harvest them? Can I plant them again for fall harvest? Some sites list "early", "mid season" and "late" potatoe varieties. The two I purchased are considered "early" according to what I've read. Do you plant another variety for mid-season or late?
Lots of questions......but I'm just trying to figure these varmints out!