How to Save Potatoes Until Spring in the Apartment or the Cellar: Effective Tips

Storage conditions are extremely important to keep potato tubers marketable and tasty. But even in ideal conditions, potatoes should be checked from time to time because they may begin to rot or sprout.

How to store potatoes in the cellar

The cellar is one of the best places to store potatoes for long periods of time. Choose the time when to put potatoes in the cellar, you can after the dug potatoes will be overworked and well dried. But do not lower the potatoes into the cellar earlier than 2-3 weeks after they have been dug up.

Particular attention should be paid to what to store potatoes in – lattice boxes or nets are best, but not thick bags. It is important that the product is stored in conditions where fresh air enters from all sides.

Sometimes people think that putting something under the potatoes in the cellar is a good idea, but in fact, this will interfere with air circulation and may cause them to dry out or begin to rot.

In a warm cellar, potatoes will sprout quickly; in a cold cellar, potatoes will freeze and become sweet. If the humidity is too high, the potatoes will also get soggy. That’s why it’s important to keep the temperature right – so make sure you have this in mind. If you are storing potatoes in a net when it is cold, you can cover them with a straw to prevent them from freezing.

How to store potatoes without a cellar

To store potatoes in an apartment or house without a cellar, you should choose cool and dark places. The balcony, shelves under the window sill, a niche, or a pantry will do. If you have a choice, conditions on a glazed balcony will be better than in a warm pantry.

Only whole potatoes without damage should be stored. It’s a good idea to look through the stock at least once a month. The inevitable variations in humidity and temperature can help a good neighborhood – keep beets between the tubers of potatoes. It will help to remove excess moisture.

Sprouting potatoes – what to do

The appearance of sprouts in potato stocks is a frequent problem. It can be related to the variety of potatoes. Some tubers sprout simply because nature intended them to do so – early-ripening potatoes can give sprouts as early as autumn and will last until December at the most.

For long-term storage, only medium-ripening and late-ripening varieties are suitable. They can be stored over the winter without fear that they will “wake up”. Find out which variety you are dealing with before putting it into storage.

To avoid sprouting, it’s worth considering what makes potatoes sprout. This can be caused by not observing the rules for storing tubers. It is recommended that the temperature in the room where you store potatoes was not lower than -5 degrees and not higher than 5-7 degrees and that the humidity was at a level of 70-80%.

An increase in temperature or humidity of just a few degrees/percentage points can “wake up” the tubers. Stick to the recommendations and it will help you not have to worry about the potatoes not sprouting.

If you still can’t avoid it, there are several ways to stop potatoes from sprouting. You should lower the temperature in the room – it should be less than 2-4 degrees. It is also advised to break off the sprouts that have reached 3-4 centimeters. This will not make the tubers “fall asleep”, but will stop the deterioration of the product quality.

What to do to prevent potatoes from rotting

Potatoes rot due to the development of fungal or bacterial diseases. Contamination can occur both during the growth and storage of potatoes.

Poor ventilation, high temperature, and humidity can all lead to pathogenic bacteria entering the tubers through cracks and cuts.

To prevent potatoes from rotting, monitor humidity and temperature, do not store potatoes in warm living areas, select damaged tubers and use them first.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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