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Old August 7, 2014   #1
NathanP
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Default Potato Bin Growing 2014

This is my second year growing potatoes in bins, to try to identify varieties that may yield potatoes throughout a bin or sack, rather than just in a single layer like most commercial potatoes do. I am posting pictures of the bins taken approximately every two weeks throughout the growing season, and will include pictures during harvest.

I would ask that the thread be considered a discussion and review of the photos presented as an experiment in testing the two varieties I have grown in this manner this year.

The two varieties grown are Papa Chonca, and CIP396286-7. Both are long season potatoes (a hard frost is required to kill the vines), and both had been identified last year as varieties that grow tubers on stolons or stems (see this thread: http://tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=30203 )

Papa Chonca has a very fibrous and dense root structure, and has been known to spread, much like mint. It has proven to have tubers overwinter in my garden as well as Maine and Wisconsin. In some cases it is considered a weed as it tough to eradicate. CIP396286-7 has a rather tall potato vine and has shown to produce tubers far from the original planting location on stolons. I have planted 3 plants of each variety, each in it's own bin. The three Papa Chonca plants were planted from tubers, while the three CIP396286-7 plants were grown from Pull Sprouts.

Papa Chonca is in the bin on the left, CIP396286-7 is in the right bin.
Plants were planted approximately mid-May




Papa Chonca 6-1-14


CIP396286-7
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Old August 7, 2014   #2
NathanP
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6-15-14

Bins



Papa Chonca



CIP396286-7


7-6-14



Papa Chonca


CIP396286-7

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Old August 7, 2014   #3
NathanP
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7-19-14



Papa Chonca




CIP396286-7
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Old August 7, 2014   #4
NathanP
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8-4-14
As you can see, the bins are essentially full at this point. There are Papa Chonca vines pushing through a hole on the front, and a hole between boards on the left rear. I have removed several boards on the bottom and middle of each bin to view the root structure. Papa Chonca has a very dense, fibrous root structure compared to CIP396286-7, but both have stems/roots present from bottom to top of the bin at this point. It is nice to see that they each are still pushing stems upward from the bottom as well.

I have since drilled approximately 8-10 1/2" holes on the front and several on the outsides of the bins, to see if any of the stems/stolons/roots will find their way outside the bins, like Papa Chonca has done in two places.

Papa Chonca








CIP396286-7






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Old August 7, 2014   #5
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8-7-14

Just two pictures of the top area above soil level, as these really show how aggressive Papa Chonca is. They are constantly pushing new vines above soil level across the soil medium.

Every few days I see more vines poking their heads up.

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Old August 8, 2014   #6
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great bunch of pictures , I can't wait to see the final results
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Old September 4, 2014   #7
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harvest any yet?
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Old September 4, 2014   #8
NathanP
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Not yet. I'd like to wait until sometime in October/November to give the tubers a chance to maximize size. Unless the vines die back sooner or they succumb to late blight first. Papa chonca is susceptible in my experience, and I believe CIP3962886-7 is fairly resistant.
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Old September 5, 2014   #9
Lee
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Do you think there will be any issues with the tubers being able to size up due to all the soil weight on top of them?

Have you explored to see if any are sizing up at the lower levels?

Down south, we have to harvest even before the tops die down to prevent the tubers from getting to rough/ragged from what I can only surmise is the increased soil temps.

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Old November 14, 2014   #10
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9-24-14 Both Bins



Papa Chonca



CIP396286-7


Last edited by NathanP; November 14, 2014 at 11:03 PM. Reason: Forgot to include picture date
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Old November 14, 2014   #11
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10-12-14 Both Bins


Papa Chonca


CIP396286-7


Papa Chonca in ground - regrown from microtubers missed when harvesting last year.

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Old November 14, 2014   #12
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11-8-14 Day of Harvest - After 2nd light frost. Expected hard frost within the next week led me to harvest on this day.

Both Bins




Papa Chonca



Papa Chonca, with top stems cut off



CIP396286-7

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Old November 15, 2014   #13
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Papa Chonca Harvest - note the numerous stems on top. This potato has very densely rooting stolons and constantly sends up new shoots, both upwards and away from the original tuber when planted in the ground.



Top Layer with board removed



Front Unburied




Exposed tubers growing on stolons



Entire Front with boards removed



Unburied Tuber hanging



Dense roots/stolons




Halfway done digging

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Old November 15, 2014   #14
NathanP
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Videos of the harvesting. Sorry about the shaky camera.

Part 1 http://youtu.be/eZzy3EgU3fw
Part 2 http://youtu.be/6-peGjsY9M8
Part 3 http://youtu.be/eOl9R1WyQCc
Part 4 http://youtu.be/Y3mtzPZUAOA
Part 5 http://youtu.be/Pkx1gLk3_uQ

Post Harvest Tubers. The box on the left were those in the ground, the ones on the right were in the bin. The tubers grown in the grown were overall larger. Yield weights were in the ground 4lbs 15.5 oz from an unknown number of mini tubers, those grown in the bin were 2lbs 15.4 oz from three seed tubers.

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Old November 15, 2014   #15
NathanP
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For comparison's sake, CIP396286-7 results and pictures. Harvest yield was not good. About
one lb from 3 pull sprouts. One large tuber was 10.4 oz, the remaining small tubers totaled about 5 or 6 oz.



3/4 of the way through digging. For some reason, CIP396286-7 did not like being grown this way. It does set tubers on stolons, but apparently not being grown like this.



Yield from 3 plants (pull sprouts). Average yield for this variety from pull sprouts grown in the ground was 16.6 oz per plant, or about 0.5 oz higher than grown from tubers (negligible this year).

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