Easy Upcycling: Potato Sacks

Declan’s job is to tell we need chicken food ahead of time. Mine is to keep it stocked up.

“We need chicken food, Mom.”

“How much is left?”

“None! And they’re hungry!” So, I got a few bags and filled up the bin. Every time I toss these bags I feel bad—they’re really are solid. Maybe I should sew them into a yurt or something…

Then I had a vision.

“Potatoes!” Earlier this year I looked at potato grow bags, then I stuck the spuds in the garden with everything else. Potato bags are thick woven plastic or canvas bags for planting potatoes. Some have a hatch to access the roots without disturbing the rest of the growing potatoes or the plant. The idea is at the end of the season, you dump the soil out and nobody has to dig for potatoes.

I follow a guy on YouTube who made a whole urban farm with potato bags and a blacktop he rented from someone.

I looked at the chicken food bag… thick woven plastic. It’s a potato bag in disguise. Chickens eat a lot of food. If I start saving now, I’ll be able to line a whole exterior row of the garden with these things.

It’s going to be epic.

Here’s the plan:

I saved them. I cut the top off the bags to dump out the food, then turned them inside out so the white shows, not the chicken food picture—it’ll look classier that way.

I’ve rolled them to about 25% of their height.

Before planting, I’ll poke a couple drainage holes in them next spring, fill them with layers of compost and loam, and line them up where the weeds usually grow.

Potatoes grow best when they’re mounded—so, as they sprout, I’ll continue to put soil and compost on them. This will give more room to roots and less for leaves, which will continue to reach up, but mostly the plant’s efforts will be dedicated to the spuds, which is where we want it. As I mound, I’ll unroll the bag higher to keep the stuff in.

Later in the season, I’ll dump out the bags and eat potatoes.

That’s the plan anyway. Are there any fellow spud farmers who want to put their pet food bags to good use and do this with me? Start saving those bags now!