seed potato vs regular potato

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Though it might not seems obvious to average people, seed potatoes and regular potatoes are not the same. Any smart gardener will tell you seed potatoes have some distinct advantages over regular potatoes in growing a new potato plant. 

Although you can grow potatoes from any regular store-bought ones the chances of success are far better with seed potatoes. This is because:

  • Seed potatoes are generally, free of diseases and pests. 
  • Unlike store-bought potatoes, they are not sprayed with harmful chemicals that can leech inside the tubers.
  • And finally, they are not treated with sprout inhibitors.

Seed potatoes are made with only one purpose that is to grow new potato plants. You will find seed potatoes from your local nursery stores or you can easily buy them online. WIth seed potatoes, you can start growing potatoes very early and you don’t have to wait for the potatoes to sprout. 

Now, you may ask, if this is so beneficial why not everyone grows potatoes from seed potatoes? Well, the answer is, seed potatoes are generally expensive compared to the regular potatoes that you can buy from any grocery store. They are also limited in supply, so might have to wait for a little to get them. 

You will understand the difference between seed potatoes and regular potatoes easily from this chart:

Seed PotatoesRegular Potatoes
Ideal for growing new potato plants.Ideal for eating.
Chemical-free.Treated with chemicals
No sprout inhibitor. So easy to sprout.Very hard to sprout, as they are treated with sprout inhibitors.
Can’t store for a long time.Can store them for longer
Expensive than regular potatoes.Cheap.
Availability can cause delay.Readily available.

Can You Grow Potatoes From Regular Potatoes?

Theoretically, you can grow potatoes from regular potatoes but it will be harder than growing from a seed potato. Many novice gardeners grow potatoes from regular store-bought potatoes because they are cheap, easy to get, and can store for a long time. But this comes with some caveats. 

Regular store-bought potatoes are mostly treated with sprout inhibitors. This although help to store the tuber for a longer period of time, will be very hard for you to grow plants from them. So you might save some money at the time of purchase but you have to pay in terms of time and energy later. 

Now, if you are a gardener, and have last years harvest you can definitely grow potatoes from them. I assume you are an organic gardener who doesn’t use any chemicals to grow plants. 

Choose the tubers that already show signs of sprouting. They will be easy to grow. You can also use a potato that has not been sprouted yet and prepare them as seed potatoes. Just remember they might have some pathogen problems later. 

Can You Eat Seed Potatoes?

You can eat seed potatoes but the best use for a seed potato is always to grow new potato plants. Besides seed potatoes are not grown with edibility in focus. They are treated specially to remove any potato pests and pathogens so they don’t cause any harm to the plants. 

So although you can definitely eat a seed potato doing so will be a loss of both money and resource. 

Final Thought:

So, If you are buying potatoes for eating, go for the regular potatoes, they are better for recipes. On the other hand, if you are planning to grow potatoes it is always better to go for the seed potatoes. You will save a lot of time and energy.

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