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Potato Growing Methods

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  ericam on 8/25/2012, 8:33 pm

Just as you guys are harvesting, I'm about to start my potato journey!

I tried once before to grow potatoes from a spud that sprouted in the pantry but I did something wrong and they died.

This time I have bought seed potatoes and will be growing them in potato bags with MM. Now I'm off to do some more reading on how to start these babies!
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/25/2012, 9:25 pm

Yeah, Erica, you will totally LOVE the taste of your garden-grown potatoes! What variety are you planting? Keep us informed, as we here in northern hemisphere are devouring our crops, it is so good to hear others still growing, so we can dream of next summer. Nonna

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  ericam on 8/25/2012, 9:48 pm

I bought Sebago potatoes as out of the varieties the store had, it was the most versatile.

Says it's good for frying, boiling, baking, roasting and salads.

They also have mauve flowers and as a girl who loves purple that has to be a winner doesn't it! Wink
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  Nonna.PapaVino on 8/25/2012, 9:53 pm

Wow, definitely a winner, purple is kewl!

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  Turan on 9/1/2012, 2:35 pm

Turan wrote:
Turan wrote:I guess I am joining the study. Despite my not intending to plant potatoes this year some managed to come home from the store with me. Rolling Eyes

They are planted with the raised bed method. 1 pound, that is 11 pieces, 7 Yukon Gold and 4 Deep Red. 2X3 area covered with 2-3" of compost. Later I will hill them and then mulch them.

So my never being able to leave anything alone nature took over and I planted 22 corn seedlings over the potatoes in a 3X3 area. Then a hard frost hit... and even with heavy coverings I lost most of the corn and the potatoes got hard hit too. But some corn seedlings survived that were tucked in among the potatoes. So I reseeded the corn and it has barely sprouted. We will see if any of it makes it past the now fast growing potatoes.

Harvest time.
From 1lb planted I got 12lbs. 10.25lbs of Yukon Golds and 2lbs of Red Pontiac.
I also got from that patch 6 ears of corn and the horses got an armload of corn stalks. There would of been more corn but we had an early frost last week that killed it from finishing.

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  plantoid on 9/1/2012, 5:06 pm

ericam wrote:Just as you guys are harvesting, I'm about to start my potato journey!

I tried once before to grow potatoes from a spud that sprouted in the pantry but I did something wrong and they died.

This time I have bought seed potatoes and will be growing them in potato bags with MM. Now I'm off to do some more reading on how to start these babies!

The MM settles very quick so be dilligent in topping it up
try 4inches of MM ,plant spuds cover 4 inch MM when tops are five inches high add 4 inches of mm and repeat every time the tops grow five till the bag is full .

I over watered and because my MM was so rich I got the stems right up into the roof space of the glasshouse at the expense of loads of potatoes .
The potaoes I grew outside in my MM fared better, less water & much better with more spuds.
Spuds in mother natures soil came mid way all bags commercial made 18 x18 x 24 inches .. I felt that they were too short so added three foot extensions made out of 2 mm rigid polethene sheet . I was unable to keep them topped up ( family breavement ) for a month so they suffered more than they should ..the end results should have been much better.
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Potato Tower

Post  smalltownfan on 9/2/2012, 12:40 pm

I will let you know what the results are for my first wooden box attempt.

I started this May 25, before I even heard of SFG. I saw something on the web and thought I'd give it a try. with very limited info on what to do. I had some spare wood from a fence project and started. The box is 2' X 2' X 4' and made of cedar.
I wish I would have known about this forum earlier, great info, I've learned so much.
I started with 4 Russets, cut in half and dried in the sun for two days. For soil I used bags of garden soil, mushroom compost, peat and 3-1 soil. A local nursery was shutting down and the bags were a $1 each. Very Happy
I put down 6" of soil for every 8" of growth. 6 stems sprouted. Growth was very good. I hope it gives some good results. Next year will be different with techniques I have read about here.
Below is the planter on August 25. The vines have fallen over but most are over 7' with one that made to 8'.


Last edited by smalltownfan on 9/2/2012, 12:42 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : forgot to mention the type of wood used.)
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  yolos on 9/2/2012, 1:05 pm

Smalltownfan - Please let us know your results. This potato tower was popular last year all over the internet. But everybody seemed to get bad results because no one knew they were supposed to use late varieties. I was dying to try it this year but didn't want to waste my time if it doesn't work. What variety of Russet potatoes did you use (are there different varieties of Russetts or is that the true variety). I have 5 beds that are 2' X 2' and would be perfect stacked up as the potatoes grow.
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  smalltownfan on 9/3/2012, 9:14 am

yolos wrote:Smalltownfan - . What variety of Russet potatoes did you use (are there different varieties of Russetts or is that the true variety). .

Unfortunately an early variety, Norgold Russet. (Lack of knowledge) I will try again next year but with a late variety. A friend from P.E.I. recommends I try Green Mountain, a heritage variety that he has had good success with.
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  camprn on 9/3/2012, 9:29 am

I have a potato growing question... Yesterday I noticed that there were a few spuds that were showing at the surface of the box and the skin had gone green. I put more MM into the box to cover them and keep them from being kissed by the sun.

Will those tubers go back to being pale and if so are they going to be safe to eat?


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Potato Tower

Post  smalltownfan on 9/17/2012, 12:36 pm

We operned up the potato box yesterday. The vines were 10' high and we got 19lbs of potatoes. The small ones were delicious. I'll try it again next year with a few tweaks including irrigation deep in the box.
Price of seed potatoes - $0.50
Price of wood - leftovers from fence
Price of earth - $15.00 ($1 a bag)
Price of watching my 3 year old grand-daughter water, hill up and harvest "her" tookies - PRICELESS!

[img][/img]

[img][/img]
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  larry on 9/17/2012, 2:16 pm

way to go Now that is just flat out coooooool smiles
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  No_Such_Reality on 9/17/2012, 4:25 pm

Where all the potatoes down in the bottom foot of the tower? From the photo, it looks like the potatoes are all down where the bottom three boards would have been and rest (2/3rds) of the top looks like it was just stem?

I've heard for towers that you need to equivalent of 'indeterminate' potatoes. I think most early potatoes are determinates.

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  smalltownfan on 9/18/2012, 7:39 am

No_Such_Reality wrote:Where all the potatoes down in the bottom foot of the tower? From the photo, it looks like the potatoes are all down where the bottom three boards would have been and rest (2/3rds) of the top looks like it was just stem?

I've heard for towers that you need to equivalent of 'indeterminate' potatoes. I think most early potatoes are determinates.

You're right, most were at the bottom. I've picked up some hints and tips and will try later types next season. but it was a great learning experience.
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  llama momma on 9/18/2012, 3:51 pm

In relationship to a box, I don't care where they grow, top or bottom, the gift is home grown, congratulations!!! When I planted mine in 12 inches of mell's mix and harvested about 5 pounds per square let me assure you I loved knowing the organic spuds came fresh from the backyard.
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  FamilyGardening on 9/18/2012, 5:50 pm

congrats cheers smalltownfan on your taters!

next year i want to grow our standard yukon golds again....just love them.....

and aslo try a indeterminate type and layer them....i think smaller taters like the finger types do well in layering....i know we have a thread from last year with lots of great info......need to find it and read it again to make sure we order our taters in time for next spring tongue

LLM.....5 lbs of taters per SQ affraid wow that is awesome!....did you put in a whole tater or did you cut an eye?......how many did you put in per square?

hugs
rose


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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  southern gardener on 9/18/2012, 6:05 pm

smalltownfan wrote:We operned up the potato box yesterday. The vines were 10' high and we got 19lbs of potatoes. The small ones were delicious. I'll try it again next year with a few tweaks including irrigation deep in the box.
Price of seed potatoes - $0.50
Price of wood - leftovers from fence
Price of earth - $15.00 ($1 a bag)
Price of watching my 3 year old grand-daughter water, hill up and harvest "her" tookies - PRICELESS!

[img][/img]

[img][/img]

wow...that's amazing!! I showed my 4 yo grandson. He just ran out to our barrel to "take a look" at ours. That is an awesome "visual" of what's going on under the soil. Thank you for sharing. A few of ours are dying off, so getting anxious to see what we get!
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  llama momma on 9/18/2012, 7:33 pm

FamilyGardening wrote:congrats cheers smalltownfan on your taters!

next year i want to grow our standard yukon golds again....just love them.....

and aslo try a indeterminate type and layer them....i think smaller taters like the finger types do well in layering....i know we have a thread from last year with lots of great info......need to find it and read it again to make sure we order our taters in time for next spring tongue

LLM.....5 lbs of taters per SQ affraid wow that is awesome!....did you put in a whole tater or did you cut an eye?......how many did you put in per square?

hugs
rose



Rose - I cut the taters into the 4 biggest eyes, and put 4 per square. Although my best square got 5 # also got 3 and 4# from other squares. Why the difference I haven't a clue. I was thrilled with every single one of them! Want to grow lots more next year.
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  camprn on 9/18/2012, 7:36 pm

How are you all going to store your freshly dug taters?

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  llama momma on 9/18/2012, 7:51 pm

I didn't dig everything at once. So taters went directly from the garden to the oven for roasting. Not many leftovers because we ate them like little piggies. I'd like to know the best way for storing them too, for next years larger planting.
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  Goosegirl on 9/18/2012, 9:57 pm

I have to say that I am now spoiled on home-grown organic taters. Just finished my first batch of mashed potatoes made with store-bought potatoes since my harvesting this year began, and I have to say they left me flat! All the home-growns were so intensely flavored that I hardly needed any seasonings. The Yukon Golds needed no butter, and the Norlands were mouth-popping in potato salad. Definitely putting in more spuds next year!

GG
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  cheyannarach on 9/18/2012, 11:30 pm

Me too GG! I am at least going to triple my tater production next year! I ran out way too fast and am already craving more of those mouthwatering home grown tubers of deliciousness, I had yukon golds and red pontiacs (yukons were my favorite)!
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  Goosegirl on 9/19/2012, 7:36 am

Triple or more sounds good to me! Even Hubby said "and potatoes" when I was listing what I wanted to plant for next year, trimming down the 'experiments' and planting a whole lot of the basics of what we REALLY eat and want to can/freeze/save, and did I say EAT?!

GG
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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  camprn on 9/19/2012, 11:21 am

Does any one out there have good guidance for potato storage, or does anyone want to research the subject and share what you find out?

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Re: Potato Growing Methods

Post  Turan on 9/19/2012, 12:18 pm

I used to grow a big potato patch and then store the potatoes in the basement all winter.

The basics for potato storage in order of importance are~

No Light

Darkness

Cool but not cold

Humid but not wet

Controlling light is of utmost importance or they will turn green. I used cardboard boxes with newspaper lining and covering and stacked in the darkest coolest corner under the stairs in my unheated basement.

The temperature needs to be a bit warmer than a refrigerator but less than room temperatures. 45-55*F is about right. Too cool and the starches will turn to sugars and the potats will be sweet.

The humidity needs be enough they do not dry up, maybe this is just a problem in arid places like here. Actually wet and they will rot and that really stinks horribly.

Basically you are trying to find a corner of home/garage/barn that is as much like sitting in the earth all winter but with out freezing. In some areas of the world you can make a mini root cellar with a 5 gallon bucket buried below the freezing line in the garden. That would depend how far down does your soil freeze in the winter? Here all potatoes not gathered will freeze and turn to mush, there are no volunteers. However many of you are in areas where caches buried is feasible.

I have heard stories of freeze drying potatoes in the Andes. And I know they can be frozen and canned and dehydrated but I have no experience with any of that. Maybe Rowena knows about those options?

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