tophiemalloy said: So you can really just plant a potato to grow more potatoes? I’m no gardener so excuse my ignorance.
Hey, we all start learning somewhere: no shame in asking questions!
If you have ever had a potato that you left too long out in the sun, or simply left out of the fridge and exposed to a light source, you may have noticed it starts growing “eyes.”
At this point, this potato should also not be eaten, because once it starts turning green and going in to “grow mode,” it starts producing glycoalkaloids like solanine as a defence against pests.
Those eyes on the potato are, in fact, the beginnings of new potato plants. You can dice the potato into portions where there is one eye per chunk (pictured above), let the cut edges cure for a few days, and plant each chunk in a trench in the soil.
Each of these will grow a new potato plant, which through some sort of evolutionary fluke (and generations of artificial selection on the part of some industrious Andeans) produces edible tubers that are not poisonous like so many members of the Solanum family, and are incredibly rich in vitamins, minerals, and carbohydrate energy.
You plant them in a trench because as they grow, you continue to bury them, and they produce tubers all the way up to the height they are buried: the more you bury them, the more potatoes you get.
I am actually relatively new to growing potatoes: this is only the second season I have bothered to do so, so I am doing a lot of reading on the subject as well.
Images: N and N Garden // Black Thumb Gardener // Harvest to Table