I have limited garden space and a desire to plant potatoes for the first time. Potatoes take up room and have very specific nutrient requirements. They require deep, loamy soil with lots of nitrogen. So, what’s an urban gardener to do? My gardener and rock star friend, Arann, casually mentioned the potato tire method to me some time back and I must admit I haven’t stopped dreaming about it. Now, it is a reality.
1. Place your old tires strategically about your yard. Crack open an IPA because you just worked eight hours with a three and a half month-old bug. I don’t think you must look all white t when using old tires. I refused to have a row of tires in my yard. Instead, I found cozy little nooks for the potato nests. I did not have old tires all about my house so I made one phone call to a local tire shop who was more than eager to give me the old rubber.
2. Fill the tire with soil and lots of compost. Like almost half and half.
3. Plant your chitted potatoes in the tires. Potatoes should be planted about four inches deep and around a month before your last frost. You should absolutely only use seed potatoes or else your cats will develop a fifth limb or something like that. I didn’t know what chit meant and I mean, holy chit, the spuds kinda just did it on their own. As with most things garden, I wasn’t too careful about it and it worked out swell.
4. When the plant part of the potato is above the rim of the tire, add more dirt and compost and the plant will continue to grow and the old stem will become root and, therefore, more potato. I have three tires for each stack but can always get more if I need them.
Think of it like whoring out a seed. Instead of getting like eight pounds for a plant, you get up to 30! AND, the best part? When spud harvest rolls around, you get to knock over the tire stack and see your bounty instead of digging digging digging.