How to Plant Seed Potatoes in Containers


Containers make it possible to garden in areas where space is limited or the soil is unsuitable. Using buckets and bins as mini-gardens creates a suitable growing environment for each vegetable and simplifies watering and caring for the garden. Although root vegetables are a bit more difficult to grow in containers than above-ground crops, a potato plant can be grown in a large bucket as long as time is taken to attend to its specific needs.

Step 1

Select a container with a depth of at least 16 to 18 inches.

Step 2

Drill four to six holes evenly spaced around the bottom of the container for drainage.

Step 3

Fill the bucket ¼ to 1/3 full with lightweight potting mixture. Make your own by combining equal amounts of commercial potting soil, peat moss, compost and perlite.

Step 4

Mix 2 to 3 tbsp. of 5-10-10 fertilizer into the soil mixture. Mix the fertilizer in well to prevent damage to young roots.

Step 5

Place one seed potato in the soil and cover with 2 to 3 inches of soil. Plant small seed potatoes whole. Cut larger potatoes into sections so that each section contains at least two eyes.

Step 6

Irrigate the soil until water runs free from the bottom of the container. Place in a sunny location that receives six to eight hours of direct sun a day.

Step 7

Add 2 to 4 inches of soil mixture around the base of the plant when they are 4 to 6 inches high. Repeat the process as the potato plant grows.

Step 8

Soak the soil when it feels dry 1 inch below the surface of the soil.

Step 9

Harvest the potatoes a week or two after the plants have bloomed. Check for potatoes by gently digging under the plants with your hands.

Things You'll Need

  • Seed potato
  • 5-gallon bucket
  • Drill, 1/2-inch bit
  • 5-10-10 fertilizer
  • Potting soil
  • Peat moss
  • Perlite
  • Compost


  • U.C. Davis Extension: Grow Vegetables in Containers
  • Ohio State University Extension: Container Vegetable Gardening

Who Can Help

  • University of Illinois Extension: Potato
Keywords: grow container potatoes, potatoes in containers, grow potatoes

About this Author

Nannette Richford is an avid gardener, teacher and nature enthusiast with 4 years experience in online writing and a lifetime of personal journals. She is published on various sites, including Associated Content. Richford holds a Bachelor of Science in secondary education from the University of Maine Orono and certifications in 7-12 English, K-8 General Elementary and Birth to age 5.