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Old May 18, 2019   #1
kath's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: zone 6b, PA
Posts: 5,664
Default Please HELP!

Have been growing potatoes for decades and have seen this problem only in the past 2 years but only lost a couple branches at most- never found the culprit. This year we're losing 10-20/day! Happens at night and during the day- have been checking 2-3 times/day. Branches are never right at ground level or below, but have been up to 12" off the ground. Started just before the 2nd hilling. Have checked the soil for cutworms, gone out at night until midnight with flashlights, have seen no holes or footprints, and have set small and large traps just in case. Thought maybe birds sitting on them, lots of rain/wind we had, but over the past week the losses have been consistent regardless of weather. At first we saw a lot of ants where the stems are emerging from the soil but with bait & DE they aren't around anymore...haven't seen aphids. Got some Sluggo Plus and sprinkled it around yesterday.

The cuts are clean, stem is nearly always still attached on the bottom. Doesn't seem that anything is actually being eaten. Kennebec not touched. Seems that the losses are all concentrated in certain areas. Have four 25' long rows and the Adirondack Blue row is taking the heaviest hit- grew that only last year and this year. Two out of the 4 rows no losses at all. One All Red plant and a few in the section planted with seed marked "Blue".

Any ideas? Afraid there won't be any leaves left in another week.

Thanks for any suggestions,

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