Whew – it takes FOREVER to plant potatoes when you don’t crowd them. According to my favorite gardening book main crop potatoes should be planted 15″ apart in rows 30″ apart. I planted 10# of Red Pontiac potatoes in rows this way. I cut them in to pieces with at least 1 or 2 good “eyes” on each piece. They’ve been sitting around on a cookie sheet for weeks now waiting for the garden, the weather, and the worker to all be ready at that same time. It took 3 days but they’re in!
You may remember that last year we planted our potatoes in tubs instead of in the ground. Our yields were pretty poor and the potatoes we did get were small. However, I believe we would have had a lot better results if we had water the plants regularly. The tubs dry out easier than the ground anyway but we just happened to try it during one of the hottest, driest summers I can remember. In a normal year we could have kept up with the watering but last year was too extreme and the plants suffered. I’m not sure how the weather will be this year but with the baby coming midsummer the plants need to be as low maintenance as possible. That means in the ground and heavily mulched to hold the moisture in.