Reuse A Kiddie Pool For The Easiest Potato Harvest You've Ever Had

Potatoes are undoubtedly an all-time favorite food, as the average American eats up to 125 potatoes annually. One of the most versatile root crops, these starches are a cuisine staple. From french fries to mashed potatoes to shepherd's pie, potatoes are a delicious, wholesome comfort food and make an excellent addition to any home garden. Plus, growing your own is the only way to ensure that your harvest is organic, chemical-free, and nutrient-rich. You can streamline the growing and harvesting process by reusing a kiddie pool as a container garden. 

This is the perfect way to reduce, reuse, and recycle an old item you may have lying around while also producing healthy and abundant potatoes free of pests, fungal issues, and contaminants that often plague potatoes grown in the ground. Container gardening has many benefits when it comes to growing root vegetables. Because you are in control over the growing medium, you know what your potatoes are growing in. When you grow tuberous veggies directly in the ground, unless you've gotten your soil tested, it's hard to know what's exactly in the soil you're using. Plus, root veggies uptake nutrients from the soil, and most residential soils are contaminated with heavy metals and other contaminants. Additionally, growing potatoes in containers saves a lot of space and makes the harvesting process much easier. Finding big containers is not always easy, but kiddie pools are widely available at a cheap price, making them the ideal choice.

How to reuse a kiddie pool for growing potatoes

Reusing a kiddie pool for growing potatoes is super easy. First, place your kiddie pool in an area of your garden that gets full sun. Next, fill up the kiddie pool with fresh soil. Be sure that the soil mix contains perlite to ensure good drainage. After selecting your potato variety, it's time to plant! Grab your seed potatoes. Some tips on starting your seed potatoes are to chit or sprout them and cut them up prior to planting. Bury them 4 inches deep, and be sure not to make the mistake of planting your potatoes too close, as this will affect their crop and yield. They should be spaced about 6 to 8 inches apart, which makes kiddie pools an excellent option compared to other smaller containers.

 Additionally, unless you drill holes in the bottom, take care when watering so as not to waterlog your potatoes. Potatoes do not like wet soil; they prefer well-draining, slightly-acidic soil. After filling your kiddie pool up with soil and planting your seed potatoes, you can cover the soil with straw for insulation and added nutrients. Straw also helps reduce pest and disease exposure, which is excellent for growing potatoes since they are especially susceptible to fungus and disease. Overall, this sustainable hack allows you to save time and reduce waste, all while easily harvesting your potatoes.

Why container gardening makes for an easier harvest

Container gardening is a great option for a variety of reasons. Whether you have limited space, don't want to deal with testing your soil, or are just looking for an easy way to harvest and grow potatoes, placing them inside large containers instead of directly in the ground could be an ideal option. Additionally, growing your potatoes in a kiddie pool or similar container makes the harvesting process so much easier. Have you ever tried to harvest potatoes out of the ground? It's incredibly tedious, and there's always a chance you may have missed some (if any of them are even edible and haven't been destroyed by pests).

In comparison, when you grow your potatoes in a contained space, harvesting them is a total breeze. Instead of digging and digging to no end in an in-ground garden bed, there is an enclosed space that allows you to gather them without leaving any behind. Additionally, your crop should come out mostly intact since their exposure to pest and disease damage went way down the moment you planted them in a container. The overall harvesting process goes much smoother and quicker when your potatoes are grown in a contained space. However, if you don't have a kiddie pool on hand and don't want to spend any extra money, try planting your potatoes in a laundry basket instead.