Grow More Potatoes in Less Space

If you are like me, I try to pack as many crops in my backyard garden as I can today I am going to show you a trick I learnt from my grandmother to help maximize productivity.  

Today’s video is sponsored by Earth Apples and at the end of this video I am going to talk to you about why I choose to work and support local businesses. 

In the last video (Link at the end of the video) I spoke about how I build healthy soil that has all of the nutrients your garden will need to produce for years.  As a number of our community members noticed I placed my trench compost in my main garden beds, and they were wondering if I left the area fallow while the compost breaks down.  

The 15cm or 6 inches of soil on top of the compost serves more than to just keep smells down.  It ensures the crops I plant such as zucchini germinate and will have the nutrients they need to grow while the material below breaks down. 

Normally I plant a squash variety on top and just leave it at that.  Last year however I chose to experiment with the sides of my trench compost and the compost stockpile area by planting Earth Apple seed potatoes.  The concept was simply to grow the squash on top and the potatoes below.

As you can see the experiment worked wonderfully.  Not only were we able to harvest from the trench compost but the raw compost produced as well.  I did notice that I ended up with a scabs on the potatoes. Potato scabs are not harmful as such I simply removed the scabs and prepared the potatoes normally.

In order to prevent root crops such as radish, carrots and beets from continuing to get scabs I rotate where I plant my root crops in order to allow the bacterium that cause scabs to reduce in numbers.   

Potatoes are so well suited to tough growing conditions they can even grow in tough clay.  Historically potatoes were planted in clay fields to break up heavy soils to make them better able to support different crops into the future. 

As mentioned earlier we have partnered with a local seed potato company called Earth Apples.  I think it is important to support my community.  I do this by sharing my passion for gardening in Canada with you and when I do purchase products I look for products that are produced in similar gardening zones.  This helps me produce more food in my garden as the varieties are better acclimated to my zone. If you would like to find out where you can get Earth Apples check out the link in the description below.

Over the coming years I do plan to try to plant other crops in my compost piles such as carrots and beets. I hypothesize that other crops such as tomatoes likely wont do as well as they are more sensitive to soil chemistry. 

If you liked this video make sure to hit the like and subscribe buttons and turn the bell notification.  I would love to know what gardening hack you have learned and share with your friends in the comment section below. 

About Stephen

The Alberta Urban Garden Channel hopes to promote organic gardening that is simple, sustainable and does not have to cost a lot. We do this by investigating the Science behind gardening, methods, practices and products to make sure that you will have the best chance of successfully growing your own food at home.