If you are considering storing your potatoes for some time or if you bought commercial bulk potatoes that need to be stored before use, it is important to store them the right way so that they remain fresh and last for the predetermined period. This is because poor storage of the potatoes will affect their taste and colour and you would have to throw them away, which would be a waste of money. Nonetheless, there are certain tips you can use to ensure that your potatoes stay long. To help you, here are some of these tips.
Choosing the Ones for Storage
The first step to appropriate storing of potatoes is to sort out which ones are right for storage, because some are likely to be more suitable than others. To sort out the potatoes for storage, you will have to cure them first. To do this, lay them out on a newspaper and let them rest in a dark cool place for some time, about a week or two depending on how long you intend to store them. After this period, check for bruises or cuts. Those with cuts will not be fit for storage. In such case, you can place them in your fridge but make sure you cook them as soon as possible.
Ventilation and Air Flow
For good airflow and ventilation, consider storing your potatoes in hard-sided containers. The hard sides will prevent bruising of the potato spuds, while the ventilation will reduce the risk of mildew or mould forming. Ventilation can also diminish chances of diseases. You can use cardboard boxes with perforations or get a root storage basket (wire-framed bin with a cloth lining). You can fill the bin with damp sawdust before laying your potatoes in it. However, if you choose to use any other container, cover the sides and tops with crumpled newspaper. This will prevent light from reaching your potatoes during the storage so that you don't worry about greening of the potatoes.
Potatoes have a high humidity and cool temperature preference and may store best with taro roots or summer squash. In addition, they can do well with green peppers, beans, eggplants, and cucumbers. You may want to store your potatoes away from such fruits as melons and bananas because they can start ripening and naturally release ethylene gas in the process. Potatoes are sensitive to this gas. If you are storing your potatoes in a root vegetable storage basket, consider adding other long-term storage vegetables like carrots.