Growing potatoes in boxes of straw or mulch?

Discussion in 'Fruit and Veg Gardening' started by Pricklypear, Mar 21, 2010.

  1. Pricklypear

    Pricklypear Seedling

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    Messages:
    241
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Southern Arizona
    Anyone ever grow potatoes in boxes of straw or mulch?
    For all I know this is just another gardening gimmick but experience will tell.

    I'm using bee hive sections that a neighbor gave me for firewood--or so she thought.

    Late January, I set a 14 X 18 X 9.5" high bottomless bee box over a sheet of hardware cloth. I threw in some soil, compost and mulch. I put the sets on top of that. As the potatoes grow I've added more mulch. I put another box on top of the first one. Now the potatoes are up to the top of this second box. So, now it's 19" tall. Another section would bring the thing up to 28.5" Should I stop there and let the plants grow until time to harvest?

    I would love to hear about your experiences trying something similar.
     
  2. Loading...


  3. MuddyKnees

    MuddyKnees New Seed

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Near Melbourne, Australia
    I've tried several ideas of raising spuds in boxes and bins..
    I tried building up progresively as the plants grew but after much top growth, very little, in any worthwhile 'taters at all.
    While I kept the water up to them I also found that using too much organic material actually rotted the growing potatoes before they got to maturity.
    This year I just used good, friable loam but to no avail.
    Maybe someone else has better success?
     
  4. Pricklypear

    Pricklypear Seedling

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    Messages:
    241
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Southern Arizona
    Thanks for your help.

    I've decided to stop where I am and just see what happens.

    Your experience supports what a couple of other folks have told me. So there's probably no point in going really high with them.

    If I get a few potatoes, I'll be pleased. If not, oh well. This is after all an experiment.
     
  5. gardentoad

    gardentoad Seedling

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Messages:
    73
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Indiana
    I tried this last year with old bald truck tires. I ended up with 3 stacked up.
    There was plenty of green plant but only a few potatoes by the end but I had used compost instead of straw.
    I'll try it with staw this year.

    I didn't help you any but I think you helped me.
     
  6. Pricklypear

    Pricklypear Seedling

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    Messages:
    241
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Southern Arizona
    Well, garden toad, I hope this all works out. This is an experiment. I got a chuckle out of your post just now because the last note I made about potatoes in my garden journal goes something like this:

    Stop for now and let the plants grow up. Make a decision after the harvest(hopefully)about whether to use compost or straw.

    I'd love to hear how your potato planting works out. Ha! Maybe we can help each other get this right.
     

Share This Page