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Hilling Potatoes

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Hilling Potatoes

Post  cin18868 on 4/8/2011, 12:46 pm

I'm just a little confused. Not sure that I completely understand how quickly to add soil around my potato plants. Last week my potato plants have started really taking off, but they are not all at the same height. Most all youtube videos show the plants really tall before hilling. Mel says to throw some soil on top as they poke their heads above ground. My tallest plant is about 6 inches. Right now I have soil around uneven plants.
Should I just put the soil on evenly adjusted to the tallest plant and have some plants completely covered while others are not covered at all?
Should I wait and hill 2-3 times over the course of the season? Please clear this up for me.
Is there a point that I could just use straw and/or leaves to hill with?

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Re: Hilling Potatoes

Post  quiltbea on 4/8/2011, 4:01 pm

I grew potatoes before.
When your plant is about 10-12 inches tall, hill it up to within a few inches from the top.
Again let it grow til its another 10-12 inches above ground and hill the soil around it again.
When the blossoms start up, stop hilling.

If some are 8" tall and some 12" tall, just hill them all up leaving a few leaves free at the top. Its not a precise science.
Two hillings should be sufficient to give enough growing room underneath before the blossoms arrive.
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Re: Hilling Potatoes

Post  staf74 on 4/8/2011, 4:41 pm

Thanks QB !!!!

I was wondering the same thing also. First time doing spuds......... and boy......... do they grow fast. Already recovered from frost damage only last week.

Will be hilling by next week on most but might do a couple tomorrow as i'm just anxious to do something in my SFG.

As my wife would say....ANY EXCUSE to get out there !!!
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Re: Hilling Potatoes

Post  Pam Hazelwood on 4/8/2011, 9:46 pm

Another question about potatoes. I read somewhere that the best time to grow potatoes is Fall and early spring. Is there a problem with growing them during the summer? I'm in Tennessee and we have HOT summers. I heard that the high temps could stunt the growth. I have about 10 potato plants peaking through the ground. Have never grown them before and am really excited about the possible outcome.

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Re: Hilling Potatoes

Post  quiltbea on 4/8/2011, 9:52 pm

Pam,
I can't help you on growing them in the south.
Here in the north we plant them in the spring and harvest them in the fall after they have died back but before any frost arrives.

Maybe someone in the southern quarter can answer that.
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