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We have a flat (apartment) with no garden, but would love to grow root vegetables such as potatoes and carrots. Is it possible to grow these in a pot, container or grow-bag, or do they need too much depth for this?

If it is possible, what containers would be recommended? I assume deep pots - but would those get enough drainage?

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There are types of baby carrots that only get a few inches long. –  J. Musser Sep 15 '11 at 1:42

3 Answers 3

up vote 11 down vote accepted

Yes, you can grow these in a container.

Here is one technique for growing potatoes in a limited area; you just plant the new crop over the old once you've harvested it.

In general the concerns are:

  1. enough soil depth (for potatoes, a foot, for home-grown carrots, you may be able to get away with 8"), and
  2. decent drainage, to avoid root rot/fungus.
  3. sufficient light and watering.

Containers even give you the advantage of containing a blight or fungus infestation if one erupts.

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Tips for the lazy gardener has some info on growing vegetables in burlap sacks.

Urban Agriculture has another way of doing things using wading pools.

Both obviously require drainage. But if you get creative, you could get two wading pools and move your sacks between them when it becomes too wet.

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I've not tried growing potatoes in grow bags but I was reading this article that claims it's doable

Here's the gist of the article:

Step 1: Prepare the Seed Potatoes About a week before planting, place seed potatoes in a warm spot. When the sprouts that form are about 1/4" to 1/2" long, the potatoes are almost ready to plant. Cut large seed potatoes into chunks about 2" wide. Each piece should have at least two sprouts. After cutting the seed potatoes, let them sit at room temperature for two or three days.

Step 2: Prepare the Bag Use a pair of scissors to cut several drainage holes in the bottom of a 30-gallon black plastic trash bag. Roll down the sides of the bag and fill about one-third of the way up with potting soil. Place the bag in an area of the garden that receives full sun.

Step 3: Plant the Potatoes Dust the seed potatoes with agricultural sulfur to protect against fungal diseases. Plant the seed potatoes by burying them, eyes pointed up, about 2" deep in the soil. Water well.

Step 4: Add More Soil When the potato plants get about 6" to 8" tall, it is time to add more soil and straw to the bag. Add enough soil so that just the top few leaves poke through the dirt. As the potato plants grow, continue to unroll the bag and add more soil. Keep the potatoes well watered but not soggy.

Step 5: Harvest the Potatoes One clue that the potatoes are almost ready to harvest is that the leaves will yellow and the foliage will die back. At this point stop watering and leave the potatoes alone for two or three weeks so that their skins toughen up. To harvest, slit open the side of the bag to release the potatoes.

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