Potato Mine is a explosive plant. While it is one of the cheaper plants, it takes exactly 15 seconds (about the time it takes a regular Zombie or any other slow zombie to walk three spaces, or half the time it takes to recharge and use it again) to arm themselves before surfacing from the ground. After that, it will detonate the first time a zombie enters their square. It may kill several zombies if they are perfectly stacked near each other.
The sound when a Potato Mine explodes.
Plants vs. Zombies
Potato Mine is unlocked after the player beats Level 1-5. It takes 15 seconds to arm itself. Potato Mines cannot be planted on a Lily Pad. There is an achievement called SPUDOW!, which requires the player to use a Potato Mine to kill a zombie.
Plants vs. Zombies 2
Potato Mine is unlocked after the player beats Player's House - Day 3. The time it takes to arm itself is the same. It cannot be planted on planks in Pirate Seas. However, it can now be planted on Lily Pads in Big Wave Beach. The SPUDOW! achievement also returns.
Suburban Almanac entry
Plants vs. Zombies
Potato Mines pack a powerful punch, but they need a while to arm themselves. You should plant them ahead of zombies. They will explode on contact.
Range: all zombies in a small area on the lane
Usage: single use, delayed activation
Some folks say Potato Mine is lazy, that he leaves everything to the last minute. Potato Mine says nothing. He's too busy thinking about his investment strategy.
Plants vs. Zombies 2
Sun cost: 25
Potato Mines explode on contact, but they take time to arm. Plant them ahead of zombies.
Usage: single use, delayed activation
Believe it or not, SPUDOW! did not happen overnight. Having been forced to try out new catchphrases and focus testing as many variations as possible (Tubular? Really?), Potato Mine weeded out the competition to stick with what he knows best.
Plants vs. Zombies 2
When given Plant Food, it arms itself and launches two armed Potato Mines in two open spaces.
Note Potato Mine can't be upgraded to level 4.
When costumed and fed with Plant Food, it arms itself and launches three armed Potato Mines in three open spaces.
Plants vs. Zombies Online
- Level 1: Takes ten seconds to arm instead of fifteen, costs 200 sun.
- Level 2: Drops 25 sun upon killing a zombie, costs 300 sun.
Because of their very low cost, they can be very effective early in levels. After that, the long arming delay makes them difficult to use. Always put them at least three squares in front of a zombie or more. This is enough for a zombie that travels at the same speed as the normal zombie and should be planted farther back for a faster zombie.
Planting a Potato Mine behind a defensive plant (Wall-nut, Tall-nut, or Pumpkin) can maximize its effectiveness; when the zombies finish eating the Wall-nut or whatever defensive plant was used, assuming all the zombies incoming have the same speed, they will all be within the explosion range of the Potato Mine when the first one reaches it. They can also be planted behind Wall-nuts or Pumpkins to catch any Pole Vaulting Zombies that try to vault over them. Similarly, they can be planted to make a Pole Vaulting Zombie jump early, in addition to catching later zombies. The player can also plant a Potato Mine in front of a grave, so that when the zombie comes up the Potato Mine kills it. This is a good strategy in Whack a Zombie. Potato Mines are also effective against Digger Zombies. When they try to dig under an active Potato Mine, it will explode. If the Potato Mine is not ready yet, the Digger Zombie will eat the Potato Mine while it is still underground. In levels with Digger Zombies, plant Potato Mines in the back-most column to take them out without hassle.
Potato Mines actually can be used against Gargantuars, except it takes two Potato Mines to kill a Gargantuar, or any two instant kills to kill it. It is extremely effective against Zombie Bobsled Teams, killing the bobsled along with all four zombies, if armed and planted next to the ice.
An effective strategy in early Survival levels or in the Day levels could be to use Potato Mines to save sun. Saving the sun spent by Peashooters allows you to invest sun in Sunflowers or other plants. It is best to plant them on the furthest column to maximize the time for the zombie to reach the mine. This is more effective with a rake. Eventually, there will simply be too many Zombies to handle for just the Potato Mines, however, given their slow recharge. If the player wishes, he/she can use Squash or Imitater Potato Mine when Potato Mine is not available.
Note: If they are planted inside Pumpkin, some zombies can trigger them without eating the Pumpkin, because their hitboxes are larger than normal (example: If a Football Zombie approaches a Potato Mine when it is armed and is inside a Pumpkin, it can trigger it, without even eating the Pumpkin).
The Potato Mine is the source for the SPUDOW! achievement, and is earned by killing a zombie with a Potato Mine. This achievement appears both Plants vs. Zombies and Plants vs. Zombies 2. In Plants vs. Zombies, a zombie stepping on a Potato Mine in I, Zombie will also count. This will likely be the first achievement the player earns.
Plants vs. Zombies Wiki has a gallery for Potato Mine.
- Potato Mine is one of the four plants which change shape without interaction with zombies. The other three are Sun-shroom, Imitater, and Strawburst.
- Potato Mine in Plants vs. Zombies has two teeth, but in Plants vs. Zombies 2, it only has a single tooth.
- Potato Mine seems to be replaced by Popcorn in Plants vs. Zombies Adventures.
- Potato Mine and Popcorn are the one-use plants with the shortest range.
- Potato Mine is tied with Tangle Kelp for being the second cheapest one-use plant, the first being Iceberg Lettuce.
- When Potato Mine explodes, the word "SPUDOW!!", a portmanteau of spud and "pow!", will appear, along with some french fries and mashed potato explosion.
- Potato Mine is the only plant that does not show its whole body.
- Potato Mine is the only explosive instant kill plant that does not burn zombies into ashes.
- The aqua version of this plant is the Tangle Kelp.
- Potato Mine, Imitater, Sweet Potato, and Hot Potato are the only plants based on potatoes in the series.
Specific to Plants vs. Zombies
- In the Nintendo DS version, Imitater Potato Mine's light will blink.
- Potato Mines can only be taken by Bungee Zombies while unarmed, as a Bungee Zombie will die in the explosion if it encounters an armed Potato Mine. A glitch in I, Zombie levels in the Nintendo DS version of the game shows that one can steal an armed Potato Mine and it only shows half of his body.
- Potato Mine is the only plant that can be planted in a Flower Pot but cannot be planted in a Lily Pad.
- On the console version of the game's loading screen, the Potato Mine's red light will flash when the game is done loading.
- In the online version of the game, instead of getting the Potato Mine on Level 1-5, the player gets the Squash.
- Potato Mine's red light will flash faster as the zombie gets nearer, like a sensor.
- The Zen Garden Potato Mine will not have a flashing red light normally, but if held by a Gardening Glove or inside a Wheel Barrow, the red light will be permanently on. The red light will also be on when the player is about to plant a Potato Mine but has not planted it yet. This only applies in the PC version of the game. Another time the Potato Mine will have the red light permanently on is when the Potato Mine is flattened.
- George Fan stated that Potato Mine was a spoof of Swiss Family Robinson, where the family sets traps for the enemies.
- Potato Mine is the only plant that can be eaten from underground by a Digger Zombie, but only when unarmed.
- An Imitater Potato Mine, even though it is gray, will have its color restored to the original upon explosion.
- Since about half of an armed Potato Mine is still underground, it is odd it does not destroy Flower Pot it is in if used on a roof level.
- In the Nintendo DS version of the game, right when a zombie reaches the Potato Mine, the zombie's eating animation's frame is shown right before the Potato Mine explodes.
- In I, Zombie, the cardboard Potato Mine does not flash its red light.
- If a Potato Mine arms itself when a zombie is eating it, sometimes, the Potato Mine may get eaten instead of the zombie getting blown up.
- Potato Mine is always the first plant the player gets in Column Like You See 'Em.
- If a Gargantuar hits an armed Potato Mine, it will explode, but if the Gargantuar hits an unarmed Potato Mine, instead of showing a flattened version of an antenna, it will show a squashed armed Potato mine.
Specific to Plants vs. Zombies 2
- Potato Mine's red light is permanently red instead of flashing red and turning to gray. However, it still flashes.
- Potato Mine cannot be placed on the planks in Pirate Seas. If one tries to plant them there, a message will show up and say "Potato Mine cannot be placed on planks." White Radishes and Bamboo Shoots act the same.
- In Last Stand, Potato Mine will not arm until the player triggers the onslaught.
- Potato Mine's costume looks like Leonardo from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
- If not armed, Explorer Zombie and Mecha-Football Zombie will walk past the Potato Mine.
- Potato Mine is the only plant obtained in the Player's House that does not have costumes depending on the season.
- Potato Mine, White Radish, Lily Pad, and Chili Bean multiply during Plant Food ability, except Potato Mine launches potatoes instead of cloning itself during its plant food.
- A very rare glitch is in Pirate Seas - Day 8, where the Potato Mine's Plant Food ability can put the two Potato Mines on planks. However, it can be achieved more commonly if the lawn is full except for the water and then the Player uses Plant Food on Potato Mine at the end of the level.
- There are four ways a Potato Mine can activate other than a zombie directly making contact with it.
- Using Plant Food on a Spikerock or Spikeweed will push all zombies to it and will make any armed Potato Mine they pass detonate.
- Using Plant Food on an Infi-nut will make a shield, but armed Potato Mines behind it will still explode when a zombie starts eating the shield, even though it's not near enough to activate it.
- Using Blover to blow away thrown Imps and Prospector Zombies will activate any Potato Mines they pass while being blown from the lawn. This occurs with other instants as well, like the Iceberg Lettuce and the Squash.
- Using Plant Food on a Chomper will activate Potato Mines as zombies fly past them.
- Only three Potato Mines are given in Day 8 of Ancient Egypt and Pirate Seas while two from Night 10 of Dark Ages.
- Unarmed Potato Mines can dodge projectiles fired back from Jester Zombies, but armed Potato Mines will take damage.
- When you use Plant Food to clone a Potato Mine, digging up the clones will generate no sun.
- If the player feeds Plant Food on it and the spawned ones landed on Dave's mold colonies, he or she will not lose the level. This goes with Chili Bean.
- From the 3.3 update to the 3.5 update, it gained the ability to blast tombstones, surfboards and ice blocks in a 3x3 radius around it, when exploded. Although, this does not apply to zombies.
- In the Chinese version, Potato Mine is one of the plants, which doesn't have Level 4 Upgrade. The others being Spikeweed, Spikerock, Cherry Bomb, Jalapeno, and Iceberg Lettuce.