How to Grow Potatoes in a Barrel of Sawdust

You can raise your own potatoes, even if you don't have space for a garden. They are simple to grow in a barrel. In addition to providing you with a means of growing your own potatoes, growing them in a barrel of sawdust is also an environmentally friendly way of producing potatoes, as you can use a recycled barrel, and sawdust is not left to waste.

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Barrels don't just carry potatoes; they can also be used to grow them.

Step 1

Find your barrel. You can use an old metal or plastic trash can or a wooden barrel. The number of potatoes you can grow will depend on the size of the container.

Step 2

Make a series of holes, about 6 inches apart in each direction, in the bottom of your barrel. These will provide drainage and help keep the potatoes from rotting because of too much water.

Step 3

Spread a sheet of fiberglass window screening over the holes and add about 6 inches of soil in the bottom of the barrel. Top that with a 4-inch layer of clean sawdust.

Step 4

Cut the seed potatoes so that each chunk contains two eyes and then let the pieces sit for a couple days so the cut surfaces dry out.

Step 5

Push the eyes down into the layer of sawdust in the barrel so they are just barely covered. Dampen, don't soak, the sawdust. You should see sprouts poking up through the sawdust in a few days.

Step 6

Add more sawdust to cover the potatoes again when the sprouts poke through. Give them a watering and wait a few more days. Repeat this process of covering the new sprouts and watering until the sawdust level is just below the rim of the barrel. Depending on the size of your container, by the time it is full, you will have two or three feet potatoes growing in the barrel. All you will have to do then is water the plants occasionally. No weeding is necessary.

Step 7

Harvest your potatoes when the plants stop growing and the leaves turn from green to yellow, around September or October.