Best way to keep small amount of seed potatoes after harvest till next spring

I am tired of every spring guessing game if I get my seed potatoes in time, so I grew my own in pots with somewhat sterile soil. Now Yukon Gold is ready, Red Gold and Red Pontiac on the way. I will have may be 30-40 tubers all together. What is the best way to store it till next spring? I think fridge, but should they be in the zip lock, cardboard box or open, do they need some moistened(or dry?) fill like pine fines around them? Please share if you have the experience, I did read many google results, they have too wide range of answers. I know that tubers has to be cured before storage.

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I just kept mine in refrigerator in the grocery bag in the vegetable section. They are growing fine this season.

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Same here - they’re just about ready to harvest

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@Antmary, @ltilton, so I guess if i put them in paper bags to separate different kinds from each other and put into grocery bag in the vegetable drawer , they should be fine?

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If you have a cool but not freezing spot you can just store them in a box. Mine are kept in our root cellar at about 35-45 degree, in individual paper bags to keep the varieties separate, all in a box, and do fine. I’very been saving/planting my own seed potatoes for 30 plus years that way. As you said, it’s so much nicer than waiting for them to arrive, and you can save the size seed you like. The eating potatoes are just stored in open crates and they keep fine that way, too. Potatoes aren’the real fussy. Just generally cool and not freezing works. Our cellar is fairly dry.

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We keep our seed potatoes stored with our potato harvest, in a cold room in the basement and just open in a wooden bin. They need to be kept cold but as sue said, not freezing. The closer to freezing the better they keep. Ours sometimes grow long shoots and soften slightly before they are planted but we plant shoots and all or, if they are too long, we just snap them off and plant.

They will be fine in the fridge and paper bags IMO would be fine.

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@Sue-MiUPz3, I wish I have a cellar, I don’t even have a basement. With early potato already harvested it is difficult to find any cool spot other then fridge in July.
@northof53, how do you manage to keep them before it become cold enough?

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We are much colder than you, we keep them growing until we dig them in early September, by that time the cold room should be cool enough, if it is not, I put them in the fridge for a few weeks until the temperatures drop.


After the tops die keep them in the ground until a few weeks before freezing(Oct. for you) then dig them out and let them dry in the sun for the day. Do not wash them or they will have more of a tendency to spoil in storage. We have stored them in open boxes in a cool unheated cellar or room. As was said before do not let them freeze. We cover the boxes with newspapers to keep the light off them. Too much light and warmth will make them sprout and turn green. What is left in the spring will be used for seed for a couple years and then I buy new certified seed.


Agreed with all that was said here on storage. One thing you might want to experiment with is fall planting, even in areas with real winters. I noticed that some of the best potatoes I got were from “volunteer” plants, from potatoes missed during the fall harvest. I still keep most of the crop for spring planting, due to gophers and voles no root in the ground is safe here. But you might be surprised about how well potatoes can overwinter; that is after all what the potato was designed to do…

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You can try storing a few in a bag of dry potting mix or peat moss and just leave it outside in an area out of direct sun(from sprouting) above ground(from critters). I don’t grow potatoes but I kept my sunchoke for over 6 months(from Nov to May) that way in SoCal, outside, just in a bag of dry potting soil. It absorbs the excess moisture due to its peat content. I planted some of them as late as July but ate most of it throughout the first 4 months. I took what I need for the evening, wash and cook them. They don’t store well even in the fridge after washing.

Out of the 100s of buds I stored, less than a dozen rotted. Remember, don’t wash them, keep whatever naturally protecting the buds intact.

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Hey, sunchoke question here.

This is my first year growing them. They are about 15 feet high and about to flower. One stalk blew over and broke and when I went to remove it there did not seem to be any chokes down there. There were a lot of healthy looking roots, but they were thin. You think it was just too early to have formed the edible part?

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If it is not flowering yet, then it is not ready. However, I have seen a guy on youtube who harvested his really early at 3 ft, no flower. I have no idea how he does that :smile: I left mine in for 5 months and it took me another 6-7 months to finish them :smile:

Mine were 7 ft and flowered all over. I don’t want it spend energy on seeding so I collected the flowers for tea brewing. Some suggest pushing the stalk down so it won’t flower and seed and just concentrating its energy propagating roots. You could have done that with the blown over stalk.

Speaking of roots, I hope you plant sunchoke in a large container or raised bed. The rumor is true - it grows like weeds, spreading its underground rhizomes far. Once planted, it is difficult to get rid of it. Difficult but not impossible.

I dug all mine up and planted them in a separate spot. Destroyed the rotted ones by smashing them into bits, which was a big mistake. All those little pieces of skin, if not rotten, will grow a new sunchoke. I let it dry out in the sun and they grow back as soon as they hit the soil. The only sure way to kill it is to cook it through before dumping them in compost pile.

They are tastier than I thought. I love roasting them like potatoes. Just don’t eat too much of it in one sitting :blush:


They are in a raised bed. I put them in last minute and the soil was not the greatest, but I swear they are huge. They look like they are about to flower and I was planning on cutting the flowers off. I thought there would be more of a tuber but it still looks like thin wispy roots. I’m going to let them go till frost and see what happens.

It takes 110-150 days before harvest according to online sources. The flowers are very prolific too. I stored them in freezer and use them later or you can compost them to get the nutrients back to the soil. But don’t let it seed because it drains the energy from the tubers. That is why the “lodging” stalk method is so tempting.

The plant will die back before frost. I cut the top and left most in ground since our winter is not that cold (no freeze) but a lot of rain. I worried it will rot. It turned green(parts exposed to sunlight but little rotting. I was surprised putting them in a bag of potting soil was able to hold it for so long even in spring.

A month or so of cold storage helps considerably with the effects. That will convert much of the undigestible carbs into digestible ones.

How cold is the cold storage? like the fridge?

How does the flower tea taste? Does it have any health benefits?

Fridge or root cellar. The native americans used to eat sun chokes last, after they had been chilled for a while.