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Old May 3, 2016   #46
Jeannine Anne
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Just for interest, not for controversy

Last year I grew potatoes in tubs as I always do, even when I have load in the ground. I used 8 identical tubs and the same potatoes and amounts in all of them.

I filled 4 of the tubs and planted the potatoes as I would in the ground and that was all they got,the spuds went in about 5 inches deep.

The other 4 I put about 6 inches of soil in the tub placed potatoes on surface and covered them with soil, as the green showed I covered it, several times. till the bins were as full as the other 4. At harvest time I had a great many more potatoes in the 4 layered bins

In a raised bed I hilled one side and not the other, I had a greater harvest from the hilled side.

Coincidence maybe, two coincidences well still maybe, however the difference was substantial for what it is worth and for whatever reason, coincidence or not.

I am layering this year in the same tubs,,which by the way are Rubbermaid containers not towers
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Old May 3, 2016   #47
twillis2252
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Thanks Jeannine in resurrecting this thread...

In the mid 80's I grew potatoes in my garden in S.C. Mainly the new small red potatoes. Never was very successful and did not make the effort to research my shortcomings at the local library. That was before the days of Internet and the wealth of information available at one's leisure.

Last year once I planted my primary garden, I had an area available to plant and seeing seed potatoes (Kennebec) for sale, purchased five pounds to try. I trenched and later hilled the plants on several occasions. I estimate I got a harvest of about 40 lbs. and the potatoes were delicious. Only issue I had to deal with were either moles and or voles sampling my planting endeavors. This year I expanded my tater patch and planted 15 lbs. of Kennebec, Yukons, Russets and a few purple variety late March. Last week spent several hours hilling the plants as they are coming along well. Just hope the critters will show me some benevolence this year...
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Old May 3, 2016   #48
Jeannine Anne
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Good for you, I love to dig potatoes, there is something magical about seeing them in the earth or having a Firkle to see if any can be picked early for the first taste. It is kinda like clamming , so exciting when you dig up a big one.

It was with some trepidation I bumped it but glad I did now.

For years I didn't hill up my potatoes and I always lost out to me neighbours who did.

Oh and by the way for those who are unsure...A Firkle is an old English word for groping around the roots of a potato plant under the ground to feel what is there, so you can sneek a few baby ones without disturbing the plant.

XX Jeannine
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Old May 6, 2016   #49
ibraash
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Jeannine,

Thanks for the hilling info. I am growing red potatoes (Pontiac) in five gallon buckets and 4 foot high, wooden boxes I made. I planted them around February 20th and have been hilling them since then. I have hilled them for about three feet now and they are still growing and very green. The leaves of the plants in one bucket started to turned yellow, and when I dumped the buckets I had about 2 pounds. The plants never flowered, and from reading online, potatoes have to flower before harvesting. Should I wait for the plants to flower or should they be ready now? I barely have any sunlight now because the trees have leaves obstructing most of the sunlight.

Please advise.
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Old May 6, 2016   #50
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Correction: I only dumped the one bucket that had the plants with the yellow leaves.
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Old May 6, 2016   #51
Jeannine Anne
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ibraash, there are many varieties of potatoes that don't flower so don't let that worry you. I have never grown in the tall wooden towers so I can't help you there. I grow in very large Rubbermaid totes

Potatoes do like the sun . So maybe that is why they yellowed, and they need adequate water too Did you feed them anything at some point..

Also I don't know your weather which may be a decisive factor in their harvest times. I usually wait till the foliage dies down except when I want a few babies from the earlies and I feel down to see what is there..this is firkling.

XX Jeannine
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Old May 6, 2016   #52
ibraash
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeannine Anne View Post
ibraash, there are many varieties of potatoes that don't flower so don't let that worry you. I have never grown in the tall wooden towers so I can't help you there. I grow in very large Rubbermaid totes

Potatoes do like the sun . So maybe that is why they yellowed, and they need adequate water too Did you feed them anything at some point..

Also I don't know your weather which may be a decisive factor in their harvest times. I usually wait till the foliage dies down except when I want a few babies from the earlies and I feel down to see what is there..this is firkling.

XX Jeannine
Thanks again.

I am in zone 7b (Atlanta, GA).

When I first planted the potatoes, I added compost and watered thoroughly. A week or so later,
I watered, using a granular fertilizer (20 18 38 NPK), one tablespoon per gallon of water. That is basically it. I watered very little since we had good rainfall. I used the same fertilizer with the same ratio three times. I only use rain water for watering, as I have two rain barrels. So on average red potatoes can be ready in 90 days????


I will best a few pics soon

Best,
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Old May 7, 2016   #53
Adriana
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A now departed gardening buddy of mine would plant potatoes in a 12" deep trench. As the plants grew he would fill in the trench. It seems much simpler than hilling.
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Old May 7, 2016   #54
ibraash
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adriana View Post
A now departed gardening buddy of mine would plant potatoes in a 12" deep trench. As the plants grew he would fill in the trench. It semes much sump,eer than hilling.

I like this trench idea, but unfortunately, I am very limited space wise. Here are my bucket and wooden box plants that used to grow potatoes in. I started mid February.
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Old May 7, 2016   #55
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The two red things, are they 2' tall flue tile? If not, they look just like them.
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Old May 7, 2016   #56
ibraash
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlittleSalt View Post
The two red things, are they 2' tall flue tile? If not, they look just like them.
Correct for the flue tiles but not for the height They are 3' tall.

They are growing like crazy and have been in the ground about 80 days now.
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Old May 7, 2016   #57
ibraash
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They were in my backyard when I bought the house.
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Old May 7, 2016   #58
AlittleSalt
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3" Flue Tiles are heavy. Imagine setting one about chest high while building a chimney around 25' high. It's not fun.

I'm a 7th generation brick and stone mason retired to disability.

Oh, the plants look great
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Old May 7, 2016   #59
Jeannine Anne
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Hi, I notice in the background of one picture there is a tree, is that area shady, if so does that effect you growing much. I am growing some things in a somewhat shady area and it is interesting to fins what other folks are doing.

XX Jeannine
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Old May 9, 2016   #60
ibraash
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeannine Anne View Post
Hi, I notice in the background of one picture there is a tree, is that area shady, if so does that effect you growing much. I am growing some things in a somewhat shady area and it is interesting to fins what other folks are doing.

XX Jeannine
It is very shady and gets no more than or or 2 hours of direct sunlight. I am selling the house in the next few weeks, so I hope wherever I end up has way more sunlight. Will see.

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