Planting Seed Potatoes & Onion

Potatoes and onions are staple crops in many households and a great addition to any garden. Planting seed potatoes and onion sets is a relatively easy task, but some best practices should be followed to ensure a successful harvest. This article will discuss the best soil types for planting, watering needs, when to plant, and when to harvest.

Soil Type

The first step in planting seed potatoes and onion sets is to ensure the soil is suitable for growth. Potatoes and onions prefer well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. The soil pH should be between 5.0 and 7.0. Before planting, it is recommended to add compost or aged manure to the soil to improve its texture and fertility.

Watering Needs

Both potatoes and onions need consistent moisture, but they should not be overwatered. Overwatering can lead to rot and disease. The best way to water potatoes and onions is to give them a deep watering once a week. If there is no rainfall, water the plants twice a week.

When to Plant

The ideal time to plant seed potatoes in Ontario is mid to late May. The soil should be at least 7°C (45°F) before planting. It is important to wait until after the last frost before planting, typically mid-May. Onion sets should be planted in late April or early May.

Planting Potatoes

To plant seed potatoes, dig a 4-6 inches deep trench. Space each potato about 12 inches apart and cover them with soil. Once the potato plants are about 6 inches tall, mound soil around the base of the plant to protect the tubers from sunlight.

Planting Onions

Onion sets should be planted about 1 inch deep and 4-6 inches apart. It is important to plant the sets with the pointed end facing up. Once the onions are about 6 inches tall, add a layer of mulch around the base of the plants to retain moisture and prevent weeds from growing.

When to Harvest

Potatoes are typically ready to harvest 90-120 days after planting. When the potato plants begin to die back, it is a sign that the tubers are ready to be harvested. To harvest, carefully dig around the base of the plant with a garden fork and remove the tubers from the soil. Onions are ready to be harvested when the tops begin to fall over. Dig the onions out of the soil and allow them to dry in a cool, dry place for a few days before storing.

In conclusion, planting seed potatoes and onion sets is relatively easy as long as the best practices are followed. Ensure that the soil is well-draining and rich in organic matter, and water consistently but does not overwater, plant at the right time, and harvest at the right time. With a little effort and patience, you can enjoy a bountiful harvest of potatoes and onions.

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