How to harvest your potatoes

Welsh flag. Cymraeg

Key dates

GYOP harvesting day nationwide Tuesday 11 June 2019


Fourteen weeks

Potato farmers harvest their potatoes 2.5 to 4 months after planting, depending if they are earlies or maincrop potatoes. They are harvested through modern potato harvesting machines that are attached to tractors. The machines harvest by lifting the potatoes from the bed using a share. Soil, dirt, rocks and potatoes are transferred onto a series of webs where the potatoes are finally separated from the foreign materials.

Just 14 weeks after planting your potatoes they will be ready for harvesting, if you have cared for them properly.

3 Easy steps

Illustration of a potato plant's leaves and root system.

Step 1

Gently cut away and remove the green tops from your grow bag


Step 2

Grab the remaining stems and pull the plant from the grow bag


Step 3

Carefully rummage through the soil and roots to find your potatoes, watch out for the mother tuber!!

Top tips

Here are some ideas to make your harvesting easy:

Harvest on to a plastic sheet so that the soil can be removed easily
As you tip out your grow bags, keep hold of the potato stem(s) this will keep most of the potatoes together
Have a bowl ready to put your potatoes in and get the children to guess and count how many potatoes there will be
Your potato grow bags can be re-used why not plant….. or save for next year and plant even more delicious potatoes.

Weighing your potatoes

Don’t forget to enter your weights into the GYOP competition before the closing date (Friday 21 June 2019)to do this you must weigh your potatoes in grams.

Your scales may have a digital display or a dial display. You need to know how to read them correctly and you may have to convert from kilograms (kg) to grams (g).

Remember to go from kg to g, just move the decimal point three places to the right, like this 1.0kg = 1000g, 0.1kg = 100g, 0.01kg = 10g

Weighing worksheet