Inspired to try growing some vegetables, while you are isolating at home?

Find a bag and some potatoes, and follow these instructions from Marina at Landport Community Garden. These were recently posted in our busy facebook group!

Here we go: how to plant spuds in a bag.
1. Chit spuds in windowsill. Egg carton is useful.
2. Remove all shoots bar one.
3. Put a few shovels of soil in bag (up to about 8 inches)
4. Place five spuds with shoot pointing upwards in the bag (see pic)
5. Cover with about 8 inches of soil.

When we have shoots we’ll cover them with soil. That should be a couple of weeks away or longer. Depends if we get some warmth.

Marina Pepper


Question: “Why do you cover with soil again when shoots show?”

Answer from community: “Good question. Because spuds are tubers. They grow on the roots. If you don’t keep adding soil the spuds pop out and get exposed to sunlight. This makes them go green. And we don’t eat green potatoes.”

Q:”Can you use potatoes that have sprouts on at home?”

A:”You can – a lot of people do this at my allotment and do get a crop of potatoes. The reason for seed potatoes is that they are disease free”


Q: “And I think you get bigger crop with seed potatoes ?

A: “Probably – i have never tested it – Monty did a ‘to chit or not to chit’ trial a while ago and chitting definitely gave a higher yield”

David added “We have planted early potatoes, Aran Pilot, in the community garden. They will be ready to harvest in about 12 to 16 weeks. They take up less room than main crop ones and you harvest them when new potatoes are expensive.

The ones you are buying in the supermarket are main crop ones and will take longer to mature. They used to be sprayed with chlorpropham, a herbicide that was used to stop the growth of weeds and to inhibit potato sprouting. This has now been banned in the EU so should not be a problem.

When you plant them, rub out the eyes so that no more than three strong growing ones remain and plant them about 4 inches deep and leave enough space between the rows to be able to earth them up. A dustbin is a good idea as you can keep adding soil as they grow so you end up with a dustbin full of potatoes.

They like lots of well rotted manure or compost and don’t forget to water them well. The dustbin needs drainage holes in it.”

David Seabrook from Peacehaven Community Garden


Do join in the conversation in our facebook group! We would love to hear your stories, see your photos and answer you questions.