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Potato towers? - Page 3 Toplef10Potato towers? - Page 3 1zd3ho10

Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

Potato towers? - Page 3 I22gcj10Potato towers? - Page 3 14dhcg10

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Potato towers?

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chrisf
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Post  LaFee 1/30/2011, 6:31 am

and for one more voice....

I grew Charlottes last year in rubble sacks - Heavy-duty bags (like the material they use for tarps) designed for hauling construction debris.

I rolled the tops down like a cuff, and started with 4 chits per bag...as they grew, I kept adding more MM (actually a commercial mix that was pretty close to MM, and with which I had *great* success). At one point I actually found I couldn't add soil fast enough to keep up with the growth!

The plants were huge and healthy and everyone commented on what attractive plants they were.

I pinched the blooms once, then let nature take its course after that.

In September, I upended them into a wheelbarrow little by little, pulling out all of the potatoes as I found them - as Boffer said, it was simple and fun -- clean potatoes, no stab wounds from a pitchfork or shovel, and I ended up with a little over 5 pounds of *gorgeous* potatoes from 16 chits...not a stellar return, but fresh potatoes just taste so darned good, and that we a few meals' worth.

The mix is still in the wheelbarrow over the winter, so I'll put it on my flower beds this year and start over.
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Post  ander217 1/30/2011, 7:57 am

chocolatepop wrote:Of course you can exculsively use mels mix, I just found it was heavier , and actually only using it in the bottom 6 or so inches of space was easier, since that is where the taters grew, and then piled with straw. This is what I found was cheapest, and easiest, especially during harvest. The straw didnt really combine that much, and what did I just turned over and it composted in for this season Smile

Chocolatepop, glad to see you back. We've missed you.
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Post  camprn 1/30/2011, 10:09 am

ander217 wrote:
chocolatepop wrote:Of course you can exculsively use mels mix, I just found it was heavier , and actually only using it in the bottom 6 or so inches of space was easier, since that is where the taters grew, and then piled with straw. This is what I found was cheapest, and easiest, especially during harvest. The straw didnt really combine that much, and what did I just turned over and it composted in for this season Smile

Chocolatepop, glad to see you back. We've missed you.
+1 happy hi
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Post  horatiocary 5/11/2011, 8:06 am

A website where you can buy great potato towers is: henleypotatotower.co.uk

They have a tower which stacks up. It also has holes in the side so you can put some of the stalks outside at all levels so that there is more foliage which means more potatoes can grow. It also comes with a polycarbonate lid to keep the frost off in the early weeks. It's a very good product that lasts a long time and works!

If that's not enough they also have a £500 competition for the gardener who produces the most potatoes in a tower in a year!
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Post  Furbalsmom 5/11/2011, 12:45 pm

Potato towers? - Page 3 654548 horatiocarey

Do you SFG? We have several members in the UK. I cerrtainly hope you have had a chance to read the ALL NEW SQUARE FOOT GARDEN book that was orignally published around 2006. It is full of great information to make gardening easier and simpler to do, without having to deal with your own native soil, which usually leaves something to be desired.

That sounds like a pretty good potato tower. Have you used it or are you just looking for something for now?

Keep us updated on your progress and drop by the European Forum for information that is specific to your region.

Again, Welcome
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Post  priehl 5/11/2011, 2:05 pm

After a disastrous experience trying to compost in a 55-gallon drum with small opening (maybe not disastrous; I could make a cheesy horror movie based on it and post online somewhere), I cut the top off and started some red potatoes. The plant started to grow, then heavy rain came and despite many drain holes, rotted. Problem was I used what I had, which was just soil, and it had insufficient drainage.

This thread has inspired me to try again (in a couple weeks, when the moon is 'going down.' I'll report back if I have any success.
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Post  horatiocary 5/11/2011, 2:45 pm

I haven't done much square foot gardening. My interest in gardening lies in the production of food rather than making beautiful flowerbeds. I have recently got interested in making my garden more productive and so I have just started using potato towers. I find them excellent and thought they may appeal to all you square foot gardeners, I thought it was only fair to let you know about them early given the $500 prize!
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Post  chrisf 5/14/2011, 1:03 pm

As I understand Yukon Golds will not yield a large crop in the vertical techniques. How about pontiac (red)?
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Post  Dunkinjean 6/5/2011, 12:33 am

Yes, I know more questions about growing potatoes in a tower......LOL Potato towers? - Page 3 601593

I am growing Kennelbec and Fingerling potatoes in a tower. Of course I started with 6" of Mel's mix.
Since then I have been adding mushroom compost and they seem to growing fine.

My question: Is it ok to just add mushroom compost to the top?
How do you know when the potatoes are ready to harvest?
After I harvest the potatoes can I take the soil (Mel's mix and alot of compost) and
spread it around my boxes to be used next spring?

Thanks for your patience.

Dunkinjean
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Post  stripesmom 6/5/2011, 2:44 pm

Potato towers? - Page 3 6-4-2010

This is a picture of my potatoes after they had come up out of the MM for one week (click on picture to enlarge). I have since added another tire and more MM and straw. They are about 10 inches above the second tire now. I know, I should have covered them sooner, but DH was against this in the beginning. I asked him to bring home 16 tires from the garage (they are used and free) and he said he'd just have to spend money to get rid of them, so he only brought home 8 tires. Anyway, we were going to add another tire tomorrow, but the plants are starting to get buds on them. I was wondering if any one thinks it's worth it to add another tire/ more mm/ straw or just let them bloom and harvest them.
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Post  Cincinnati 9/4/2011, 10:03 pm

Can you grow sweet potatoes in a tower?
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Post  westx 9/4/2011, 11:30 pm

Stripesmom, cut the buds off and add some tires and let them keep producing.
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Post  Chopper 9/5/2011, 1:26 am

Cincinnati wrote:Can you grow sweet potatoes in a tower?

There would be no point. They are not the same as potatoes. Potatoes grow along the stem but sweet potatoes from from the root. They are tubers and potatoes are not.
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