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Easy Way to Plant Potatoes No Dig Ruth Stout Gardening

Planting Potatoes, An Easy Food to Grow  

A definite staple we enjoy growing is potatoes. Did you know it’s one of the easiest foods to grow?  We’ll fill you in on this easy way to plant potatoes!

This method bares it’s name sake, “Ruth Stout Method.”

She was still gardening in her eighties and boasted, “I haven’t been to the grocery store in fourteen years!” Who couldn’t get on board with that!?

How to Plant Potatoes planting potatoes in hay

 An Easy way to plant potatoes in 4 Steps:

  1. Choose your plot where you’ll grow potatoes (it’s best to let the hay sit a few weeks or months, if you have the time, before planting.)
  2. Spread hay about 2-3 foot deep.  Hay that has not been sprayed or fertilized.
  3. Pull the hay back to place your potatoes on the ground at 14 inch distance apart.
  4. Cover each potato with about 8 inches of loose hay.
  5. Replenish hay as it decomposes, making sure the potatoes stay covered. The potato plant (foliage) will emerge above the hay.
  6. Add more hay to ensure the stems are covered up to the bottom leaves.

You can begin harvesting potatoes once the plant dies back.potato harvest, potatoes in a basket and on the ground

How Much Potatoes to Plant

To keep your pantry stocked in potatoes, think about how many pounds your family eats per month. Multiply that number by twelve to get pounds per year.

Potatoes yield around ten times the amount planted! Our family of four eats about one hundred and eighty pounds per year, so I will need to plant at least eighteen pounds.

When you harvest the potatoes pull back the hay using a garden tool. I prefer a potato fork.  I recommend this harvesting method because there could be a snake hiding under the hay.  I’m not fond of those!

Curing Potatoes

When harvested, the skin will be very delicate.  They will need to be cured, which will harden/toughen the skin.

How To Cure Potatoes:

  • Place your unwashed potatoes in a box
  • Store in a dark place, like a garage.  Exposure to light will make them turn green. 
  • You’ll want to leave them to cure 10-14 days.  Once the skin is hardened, place them in a cellar or cool area of your basement.  

Food Security

If you’re interested in more valuable gardening information we have a FREE Food Security Series .  NOW’S the time to take control of your food security! 

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Leave us a comment if you’ll be growing potatoes this year.   Do us a favor and share this content with others!

Talk to you soon,







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