You’ve probably heard the saying about leftover pasta water being like liquid gold. However, you almost certainly don’t think twice about what happens to the water used when you boil potatoes. But next time, you should.
You may be surprised to learn that the cloudy, starchy water from your boiled potatoes may be a powerful natural fertilizer.
Potato water boasts an impressive amount of minerals and nutrients which can contribute to the well-being of both indoor and outdoor plants. In every 100 grams of this natural plant food, you’ll find 350 mg of potassium (K), a macronutrient that plants need to build immunity against environmental stress, along with phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, and zinc.
Aside from providing more potassium than a banana, spud water also contains protein, iron, and B6 vitamins. These essential nutrients can help nourish your plants without a trip to the hardware store.
In spite of the fact that leftover boiled potato water can benefit plants, there are some cautions to be taken. In order to be effective and safe, starchy water must be made from unsalted potato water. Using salted potato water in your garden will help you eradicate weeds and other plant life. In particular, when used immediately, salted potato water is a very effective weed killer for broad-leaf weeds.
Conversely, salt-free spud water is an excellent source of supplemental plant food for both indoor and outdoor plants. Using just potato water instead of plant food may not be a good idea, but it is an excellent way to recycle potato water. Aside from that, it provides plants with some of the essential nutrients they need. For strong, hardy, beautiful plants, add potato water to your existing plant food.
While we’re recycling potato water, let’s not forget about those precious tuber peels. In addition to being a powerhouse of nutrients, potato peels can be used as an organic fertilizer for plants. Potato peels improve soil fertility with potassium and phytonutrients, which plants love.
However, getting the benefits is not as simple as pouring on leftover potato water. It is recommended that potato peels be composted before being introduced to the garden. By skipping this step and sprinkling peels directly into your garden, you risk attracting plant-destroying pests like deer, rabbits, and rats.
If you are having potatoes for dinner, don’t throw out the leftover water. Be sure to shake up any potato water before adding it to your plants. Simply add it to your watering can along with your existing plant food and water your plants as usual.