You’re considering planting a potato vine (Solanum crispum)…GREAT! Potato vines are fairly simple to care for and make excellent additions to your garden. You’ll really appreciate the quick growth and beautiful flowers.
Or perhaps you already have a vine growing. Either way, here are 7 tips you must know if you plan to have potato vine in your garden space:
- During the plant’s first season, water regularly to allow water to penetrate deep and allow for a deep root system to develop. Afterward, you can get away with watering less frequently but make sure to let the water penetrate deeply.
- Make sure your plant gets plenty of sun, at least 6 hours of direct sun per day. The plant may need the shelter of a west or south-facing wall in cooler climates.
- Watch out for pests! The most common potato vine pests are aphids, thrips, spider mites, and whiteflies. Control the aphids with a natural household concoction of water, white mineral oil, and dish soap.
- Use a good organic fertilizer to provide necessary nutrients the soil might be lacking. I like Alaska Fish Fertilizer that you can buy at a big box store, but there are many to choose from.
- Fungus can be an issue in more humid climates; you might see powdery mildew or blight. Organic fungicide works well to combat these problems.
- Use a trellis to support the fresh growth, or consider an arbor.
- Prune annually to control its shape and promote next year’s growth, but not to the ground like some other vines.
Best of luck! Anything I missed? Let me know.