Food Innovation Online Corp
  • English
  • Español
  • 简体中文
  • Nederlands

You are here

It's potato planting time in North Florida

It's potato planting time in North Florida

Potato field of Blue Sky Farms in Hastings, Florida, United States.

February 9, 2017
It’s potato planting time in North Florida. St. Johns County is one of the counties in Northern Florida well known for its potato production with the town of Hastings being the center of it.

The loose, sandy soils here are well suited to growing tuberous vegetables. Farmers grow potato varieties for use for potato chip production or fresh table stock.

But why not try it yourself in your garden?

If you want to try to grow some potatoes, you first need to acquire some ‘seed’ potatoes. These can be found at local nurseries or feed stores or by mail order. Do not use potatoes from the grocery store because they may have been treated with sprouting inhibitors or could spread disease to your garden.

Some varieties that perform well in Northern Florida are Sebago, Red Lasoda, Yukon Gold and Russet Norkotah.

Potato plants grow vegetatively for 30 to 55 days. They set tubers from day 55 to 70, which then bulk up from day 60 to 120.

(Click picture to watch video)

Portrait of potato farmer Danny Johns of Blue Sky Farms in Hastings, Florida

Plant your seed potatoes on rows that are about 1 foot high. Set the tuber at least 4 inches deep.

You may need to add more soil if tubers become exposed during the growing cycle to prevent sunburn. Potatoes are heavy feeders. You can apply a 10-0-10 fertilizer at a rate of 7 1/2 pounds per 100 feet of row at planting time and again when the plants are about 6 inches high.

Potatoes to be harvested for fresh use will need to grow 80 to 115 days in the ground. Potatoes for storing should be harvested about two to three weeks after the vines die.

Northern Florida soils and late winter climate are ideal for growing potatoes. So plant them now and give them a try in your garden!