Potato plants

Will Potato Plants Regrow if They Get Cut? Gardener Explains

Cutting a potato plant does not always kill it. Successfully cutting the stem at the right time of year and in the right way could see it grow back. If you want to successfully cut open a potato plant without killing it, you should cut off all of its leaves and wait until it stops producing new leaves before making another cut.

This is because photorespiration requires both light and oxygen to work properly, and if left exposed for too long after being cut, they will absorb too much carbon dioxide from the air which will cause them to stop photosynthesizing altogether.

The leaves of potatoes contain chlorophyll, which is responsible for capturing energy from light during photosynthesis. When the potato is exposed to light, its leaves absorb energy from these photons in order to synthesize sugars through the process of photosynthesis.

All of the energy that is captured by chlorophyll during this process will eventually be released as heat when it decomposes and this can lead to increased temperatures inside the plant.

However, unlike a normal plant that also contains chlorophyll, a potato plant can’t survive if its temperature gets too high. This is because it doesn’t have any stomata.

These are the tiny pores found on the underside of leaves and they allow carbon dioxide to enter the plant while letting water vapour escape.

They also stop leaf temperatures from getting too hot. Without these structures, the leaves of a potato plant will boil without releasing any water vapour and it will eventually dehydrate and die.

So How Can You Cut Open a Potato Plant Successfully so it can Regrow?

Well, first you need to wait until its leaves have died back, which is usually in autumn or early winter. When this happens, you’ll need to dig up your plants or slice through their stems with a knife or spade if they are above ground. 

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Then just wait for the leaves to completely dry out. If you manage to do this, then when you start growing the plant again it will have fresh roots and new leaves.

It might take some time until you see regrowth, but it is possible to do.

Can Potato Grow From Stem Cutting?

Plants that have been cut in the past can regrow, but the process only works with some varieties. If you want to know if your potato is one of them, look for leaves on the stem where it was cut and see if they form a rosette.

Is there anything I should know about cutting my plants?

Depending on where you live (and how much you’re cutting) you may want to take very good care of your potatoes and other plants after harvesting.

Over time they can become damaged by too much or too little oxygen in the soil, so it’s important that you reduce their exposure to sunlight after harvest as well as storing them somewhere cool enough.

This will help keep their growth rate up.

How Soon Can You Plant Potatoes After Cutting?

Once your plants have dried out you can plant them. Keep in mind that the growth of the plant will be affected by the amount of light it gets. The more light it receives, the faster and bigger it will grow. 

If this is not enough, you can place a light bulb anywhere in your potato patch and move it around as needed to keep your potatoes growing fast and strong. 

Store-bought potato seeds will come with instructions for how to do this, so be sure to follow them to get the best results.

How Can Cut Potatoes Regrow?

By cutting back potato plants you are able to induce new growth; this is often referred to as “cutting back” or “rejuvenation cutting”. 

Rejuvenation cutting is a technique that potato farmers use to improve their crops by making additional growth, it helps the plant put its energy into the new growth instead of the seeds and potatoes.

When rejuvenation cutting you can do so in 3 different ways:

  • 1. By the leaflet or entire stem cutting method: The most common way to rejuvenate your potato plant is by cutting them back to a point where one healthy leaf or multiple leaves still remain. The process of rejuvenating will generally take place in about 3 weeks after the potatoes are cut back.
  • 2. By the stooling method: Stooling is a very popular method and it helps you remove some of the tubes that form on your potato plant (usually at the base). It stimulates growth and increases yield, so it’s very useful if you’re growing for small-scale farming or for home consumption.
  • 3. By removing the entire plant: You can also remove the entire potato plant from the ground, and dig a hole for it to replant. It will produce potatoes in a year’s time, but it will need some extra care as it’s very sensitive.
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If you are going to rejuvenate a larger number of plants at once or if you have seed potatoes, you can cut them at the ground – only leaving 1-2 leaves and buds on each plant.

If you’re growing your plants in a greenhouse, it’s best to leave the cut as late in the season as possible, allowing them to grow as long as possible before cutting back. Once they start budding out and growing new leaves begin cutting them back and putting them in propagation trays for up to 2 weeks. This will allow the stems time to heal over before planting them again.

The best time to cut your plants is when you start seeing signs that it’s going to flower. Once you see this, cut them back such as stripping them, remove the leaves and place them in a spot where they will get the most sunlight. 

After 2-3 weeks you’ll start seeing new shoots of growth coming from the stems.

How often do you need to regrow potatoes?

Cutting back your plants will depend on how many weeks before they would flower anyway, so if you leave it a little longer then that should be ok as well.

Each plant has a different amount of time it needs to grow before it begins to flower, so if you pick up your potatoes when they are about 4 weeks old, then this should be enough time for you to cut them back.

If your potatoes don’t seem like they’re getting the sunlight they need or are getting damaged on the tops, then it’s best to leave them as long as possible before cutting them back.

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How do you regrow potatoes?

The first thing you’ll want to do after cutting is to place your leaves in a location that will get sunlight as much as possible. 

It is generally recommended to use a clear plastic container, such as the kind used to store onions or carrots. You can use this for at least one season, but if you don’t then make sure to change it out every year.

Another option is to cut your plants to the ground and leave them there for around 2 weeks before replanting them. 

This will allow time for the stem to heal over before planting them again or for propagation material (seeds) if you so choose. You can do this in a greenhouse as well, just make sure that they are in full sun space during this time and that they aren’t getting damaged.

Once you’re ready to re-pot your potatoes, dig a hole in the ground and place them in it. Cover them over with about an inch of soil and water them. 

You can also place them in another outdoor container like a large bucket or bag and fill it with soil up to the top of where the stem is. Then cut off the leaves so they are only above the top of the soil. Cut off any stems or roots that are damaged so they don’t rot on top before planting.

Do you need to remove any potatoes before replanting?

If you’re not planning on eating your potatoes, then we would recommend removing around 2-3 potatoes from each plant as this will result in a better overall crop.

Potatoes are a very sensitive species of plant, and they can be easily killed by overwatering and/or using the wrong type of soil. After all the potatoes have been removed it’s important to keep them watered, especially if you’re going to be leaving them in the ground for a long period of time.

You can also choose to use some fabric or plastic wrap as a temporary holding area for your potatoes if you’re not sure when your new plants will be ready to grow. Just make sure that it’s never covered completely up so that sunlight can still reach them as they’ll need this for growth.