sprouting potatoes

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Sprouted potatoes are a very common phenomenon in households. If the potatoes are kept for a very long time without proper storage methods, you will find quite a few sprouting potatoes searching for light.

Can You Plant A Potato That Has Already Sprouted?

You can definitely plant the sprouted potatoes, but instead of planting them as a whole, you need to first process them and make them suitable for planting. 

Here in this post, I will show you how you can prepare an already sprouted potato into seed potatoes and use them to grow new potato plants.

What to Do With Sprouted Potatoes?

So what exactly we can do with the sprouted potatoes? Here are three things that you can do:

  1. Eat the potatoes. 
  2. Throw them in the compost bin. 
  3. Use them to grow new potato plants.

Can You Eat Potatoes With Eyes?

That short answer to this is yes, sometimes you can eat potatoes with eyes but not always.

Sprouted potatoes or potatoes with eyes means that it has woke up from the dormancy. Now for continuously growing they need nutrients. The tubers are full of starch, they start converting that starch into sugar to provide nutrition to those sprouts. 

So depending on the growth of the sprouts the starch content of the tubers will vary. You can easily check the edibility of the potato tubers just by pressing the tuber gently. If the tuber is firm, this means most of the nutrients in the tuber is intact and you can eat the potato tuber. If on the other hand, the tuber is shrunken and wrinkled, you should avoid eating that potato. 

Always remove the sprouts before eating a potato. Sprouts have a high amount of glycoalkaloids in them. Glycoalkaloids are considered toxic for humans. So eating potato sprouts can have some toxic impacts on your nervous system. 

This is the same reason why you should not eat potatoes with a green tinge, as they also have a high amount of glycoalkaloids. Although you can eat the rest of the potato by simply cutting off the green part from the tuber, the best suggestion would be to avoid potatoes in the grocery stores that have a green tint on them. 

When Should I Use The Potatoes To Compost:

Composting a sprouted potato should be your last option really. And you should do this only if the potato tuber is already turned bad and is not suitable for eating, and you do not have the time, energy or space to grow new potato plants.

But if you are here, that means you love to grow plants. So you should try the last and probably the best way of using a sprouted potato, i.e, grow a new potato plant.

How To Use Sprouted Potatoes To Grow New Potato Plants:

The first step in this process would be to prepare the planting bed for your potato plant. Potatoes grow best in trenches so prepare a few rows of trenches that are at least 6-8 inches deep. We have discussed these in detail when we discussed planting potato plants

The next step would be to prepare the ideal soil for growing potatoes. Once the soil is ready you can prepare the sprouted potatoes for planting.

How To Sprout Potatoes Before Plant...
How To Sprout Potatoes Before Planting Them

A sprouted potato can have many eyes or sprouts. So the first thing would be to count the number of sprouts in the tuber, each sprout will grow into a new potato plant. 

Usually, each eye develops a single sprout, so cut each potato eye and separate them from the rest. If there is more than one sprout in a single potato eye keep them grouped together. 

Use a sharp knife to cut the tuber. Remember each sprout or a group of sprouts should have some part of the tuber attached with it. Now, we can use them as seed potatoes to grow new potato plants. 

Just like we discussed in this post we have to wait for 2-3 days. This will help the exposed area of the potato to dry up and will prevent rotting once you plant them. 

Now plant them in those trenches that you have prepared earlier, and cover them with soil. As these sprouts will grow and produce vegetative growth you have to mount soil and create hills around the potato plants

Usually, you will have to wait about 3 months for the plants to grow and produce a harvest. The time can also vary depending on the variety of your potato plant.

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