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This blog gives designs and plans for the projects I've completed. You can see more on my sibling blog:

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Monday, May 31, 2010

THE COLOSSAL POTATO TOWER VENTURE

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So, I got this idea for a Potato Skyscraper/Tower here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9rGWZAIjsTUAs he didn't give any real instructions, I'm attempting this experiment on my own. The idea is that the plants will grow out the sides and top of the tower and the whole thing will be green. In the fall when the plants die back, the whole inside is supposed to be full of potatoes. We shall see.

These are the tools and materials I used:

Shovel
Gloves 
Scissors
Garden kneeling pad
Landscape fabric
Cable ties
Good fertile dirt (mine was from the cow pasture, but you could use compost)
Straw


I had some prep work to do, because it was going in a place that had tough stalks that I had to remove, but the theory is you can put it right on top of the grass. So, anyway, place the landscape fabric down where you want you tower placed. I put bricks on the outer edge, so I can mow close to it and not have weeds, hopefully.





Next take a length of Chicken Wire (fencing), available at the home center or a farm supply center. I used about 10 feet or so, but you can make it any size you want. Just remember, the bigger you make it, the easier it will want to tip over. I had a couple of fence posts in here already for tying up my plants, so I used them to anchor the Tower to in the back.


You may not be able to see it very well, but I overlapped the edges after I made a circle of the chicken wire and fastened it with cable ties.

Now, start filling with dirt or compost. 
Put in about a 3-4 inch layer.










Next, goes a 3-4 inch layer of straw.


I planted 3 different varieties of potatoes:

Reds
Mega Chip (white)
Yukon Gold (white)

I cut them so there was at least one eye in a section and allowed them to air dry for an hour or two, so they got kind of a crust on them. This is 
supposed to help prevent rotting I guess.

Layer the cut potatoes on the straw and then add a layer of dirt or compost and straw.
Continue layering in this manner until you are finished. 
I had 2# of each type of potato and made 2 layers of each kind, for a total of six layers.
Finish with dirt or compost over the last layer of potatoes.
I put a layer straw on top, just to keep the weeds down. 
Here is my tower, finished. 
I planted it on May 15th.
Be sure to water the tower frequently, as potatoes have a lot of moisture in them.







And look who decided it was a bed the minute I got done!







Here it is on May 27th. 
The plants are starting to grow out the sides and top.

3 comments:

homesteader said...

That is a fabulous idea. Creative thinking!

Tru said...

Thanks, homesteader, I try!

Tru said...

I'm posting updates every week or so, so check back. The plants are starting to grow nicely.