Do You Plant Potatoes With The Eyes Up or Down? [Potato Planting Tips]

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The interesting thing about growing potatoes is that, unlike most other vegetables, potatoes are not grown from potato seeds. Rather, we use seed potatoes, which are nothing but small cubes of potato tubers that have at least two potato eyes in them. These eyes will form new potato plants after they sprout.

So as potatoes are not grown from seeds and from seed potatoes this leads to the question “what is the ideal way to place the seed potatoes.” Do I plant potatoes with the eyes up or down? 

This is really a beginner-level confusion, seasoned gardeners rarely bothered about these. Let me tell you why…

What Are potato eyes?

Potato eyes, also known as bud eyes or sprouts, are small protrusions that occur on the surface of potatoes and other starchy tubers. These eyes are the locations where new shoots will develop over time, under the right environmental conditions.

Why Potato eyes are important:

Potatoes are a type of tuberous vegetable which grow by vegetative propagation. And adventitious buds, or “eyes,” located in the epidermal layer of the potato play a major role in this.

When conditions are conducive to sprouting, these eyes become activated, allowing the potato to produce stems and leaves which grow outwards from the original tuber.

This phenomenon occurs as a result of metabolic activity within each eye and the subsequent release of hormones responsible for initiating morphogenesis.

How To Easily Grow Eyes on Potatoes

Do You Plant Potatoes With The Eyes Up or Down?

Usually, all gardeners suggest that you plant your seed potatoes with the eyes facing up, and that is logical too.

When you plant your seed potatoes this way you actually go in the natural direction, as the eyes will lead to the stem part which will go upwards, and from the bottom side of the seed potatoes’ roots will grow and they will go downwards. 

Having said that, it doesn’t mean if you place the seed potatoes with the eyes facing downwards they won’t grow. In this case, the stem and the roots will have to work a bit more to find their natural line of growth.

So don’t worry too much about finding the right way to plant seed potatoes. Rather it is much more important to make sure your potato plants get the ideal growing conditions and protect the plants against pests and diseases

How To Plant Seed Potatoes:

Potatoes grow best in trenches. So, first, prepare a trench that is about 6 to 8 inches deep, here you will plant your seed potatoes. Usually, you will have more than one trench so the best way would be to arrange them in rows. Keep a gap of 3 feet between two rows.

Now place your seed potatoes in the trench and space them 1 ft apart. After placing the seed potatoes pieces cover them up with 3-4 inches of soil. As the plant starts to grow you will have to start hilling up your potatoes


Growing potatoes is a simple process that does not require too much work but yields delicious results. Planting potatoes from eyes is one of the most important steps in obtaining a bountiful crop.

Whether you plant potatoes with the eyes up or down, make sure to dig deep enough and give them plenty of room to grow. Once the seed potatoes are planted, provide them with plenty of water, sunlight, and soil nutrients for optimal growth.

I hope this post was helpful to you. If you like the information don’t forget to share it with others too.

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prasenjit saha author Gardening ABC

Hi there! My name is Prasenjit and I’m an avid gardener and someone who has grown a passion for growing plants. From my hands-on experience, I have learned what works and what doesn’t. Here I share everything I have learned.