I should say at the beginning that this is the first time I’ve done something like this. I'm ashamed to say that for whatever reason I’ve never had the thought to grow my own produce at home, so I thought I would document the process of growing my own potatoes in containers. This is obviously a learning process, so please bear with me!

I received two batches of seed potatoes through the One Seed Forward, which is a fantastic community growing initiative and encourages people to get growing. The types I am trying are Cara and Lady Balfour potatoes.


Chitting is the process of allowing shoots to grow from the seed, which will eventually become the potato plant. I put the potatoes in egg cartons and left them on a windowsill that gets lots of sun. My tatties had already started to sprout when I received them on 26th March.

chitting potatoes

26th March - small shoots

chitting potatoes - almost ready to plant

15th April - longer and darker chits, nearly ready to plant!

Time to plant

I am using old recycling containers to grow the potatoes in. However one of them needed a bit of repair because it had split up the side. Duct tape is your friend in this situation!

fixing container for plan ting

On the 22nd May, after roughly a month of chitting, it was time to plant!

I filled the containers with about 5 inches of multi-purpose compost.

I placed the tatties with the chits pointing upwards about 6 inches apart. Then I covered them with another 4-5 inches of compost. Now begins the waiting game!

planters with compost

First shoots!

I came home from work on the 2nd May and checked the containers, as I had been doing every couple of days since planting. At first I thought nothing had changed, but as I looked closer noticed a small sprig for green: the first shoot of a potato plant!

I don’t have kids but pretty sure this is what becoming a dad for the first time feels like. Perhaps not?

first sprout in container first shoot of potato plant

Once the shoots grow a bit more I will be covering them again with compost, leaving a small shoot visible.

Stay tuned for updates!