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potatoes :) Toplef10potatoes :) 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.

potatoes :) I22gcj10potatoes :) 14dhcg10

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Post  middlemamma 5/24/2011, 12:45 am

I have heard lots of people use straw.
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/24/2011, 2:07 am

do you know if they use just one time layer of straw? or can you hill up with straw? keep adding straw as the plant grows?....like you would do with dirt

thanks Very Happy
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Post  middlemamma 5/24/2011, 2:09 am

Yes they use the straw to hill up. From what I have read, it doesn't matter what is used to hill up as long as the taters are not exposed to light, that apparently turns them green and a green tater is poisonous.
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/24/2011, 2:13 am

wow......what great service this forum has.....LOL....im new with lots of questions and love to read everyones new post and old.....you were quick tonight Very Happy

thanks.....now i can go to sleep tonight and not worry about how im going to hill those taters in the morning cheers

hugs
rose
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Post  Lavender Debs 5/24/2011, 8:51 am

I try to stuff my potato bins (probably what you call "hill" every time the potatoes get about 6 inches of new growth. It hasn't happened lately because I've been using grass clippings and am all out until the next lawn mowing.

Debs....who will be getting straw bedding for the nuggets as soon as she is home from Sequim.
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/25/2011, 1:10 am

great to know about the grass clippings!! ....we always have plenty of that around here......i was thinking that after the potatoes are done....all the lawn clippings will compost great in with the MM i used.....it really is doing two things at the same time Very Happy

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Post  Aub 5/25/2011, 12:57 pm

I've been using my "Almost-Compost", it's the stuff that isn't quite finished, there's still grass clippings and pine needles hanging around in it. The potatoes seem to LOVE it! I've covered them up 2 or 3 times now.

On a whim I put an old, sprouty potato from the kitchen in a bucket with some MM and Almost-Compost. I forgot to drill a hole in the bottom and with all this rain it was sitting in a swamp. So i dumped it out, it didn't have any leaves yet, and moved it to a recycle bin with pine needles, grass clippings, MM and Almost-Compost.
It already had a couple tiny baby potatoes on it! So I know my big ones are going to do good.
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/25/2011, 9:45 pm

thats awesome!!

please keep us updated when you harvest.....for some reason....i love seeing and reading about other's harvesting their potatoe's and the method of growing them!

hugs
rose
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/29/2011, 2:42 am

ok....i hilled up my potatoes in the garbage can's today with grass clippings.... Very Happy i had been using MM for the first half.....then some bought compost....now today the grass clippings......

i forgot to ask....is it ok that they were fresh?....just mowed and put on......is it also ok to add some soil on top of that?....just a small amount......my hubby said he is affraid the grass is going to get moldy......let me know what you think Very Happy

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Post  Old Hippie 5/29/2011, 8:31 am

It might generate some heat if it was fresh clippings that you put there and covered up. When using grass clippings that way, you might want to spread them out on a tarp or the driveway to dry first.

Gwynn
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Post  Lavender Debs 5/29/2011, 9:44 am

I agree with Gwynn. I do not think that you need to pull the wet grass layer off but I personally put my clippings into a largish cylinder (actually that is where the guys dump the bag). When the upper layer has dried I lift it off and use it for the potatoes. Than the next layer dries (even in the PNW!).

I have a feeling your spuds will be fine, but can I say, I do not use compost as mulch. Grass clippings are not compost until they are worm food. Compost will sometimes make scabby potato skin. That is the same reason I do not use fresh grass clippings. By the end of the week your clippings should be nice and dry (it is only one layer.), you should be fine. Scabby potato skin is not a health issue, you just peel it off. I have heard that they do not store well but personally I have never had a root cellar so who am I to say.

And keep reading, someone will soon write that they use compost on potatoes all the time and never have scabby potatoes. I'm just saying, maybe it’s just me.

Debs....excited about your garden!
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/29/2011, 2:04 pm

Thanks!

hugs
rose.....who is thinking about pulling off fresh grass clippings to allow to dry and adding straw Very Happy (we have one bale left that hubby and kids use for bow and arrow practice....think they will notice if its a bit shorter?) ha Laughing
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Post  Lavender Debs 5/29/2011, 2:17 pm

FamilyGardening wrote:Very Happy (we have one bale left that hubby and kids use for bow and arrow practice....think they will notice if its a bit shorter?) ha Laughing

Only if their aim is off.

Deborah....who cannot even pull a bow anymore. (fun times)
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/29/2011, 5:06 pm

ok.....i pulled out the fresh grass in my potatoe wine barrels and added some straw Very Happy the two garbage cans i left them with the grass from yesterday....their grass clippings came from the back yard that had chop up sticks and some dirt from mowing over bare spots Laughing it looked like it started to dry already....fingers crossed they will be just fine......one garbage can you can see the potatoes peaking out of the top of the can already....i think i will only have to hill them up once more and then the waiting game begins Very Happy
potatoes :) 05_29_16

i traded the kids this potatoes :) 05_29_13

for some straw potatoes :) 05_29_14

do you think the straw looks ok in there?

found lots of lady bugs today too Very Happy

potatoes :) 05_29_15


hope you all are having a great three day weekend! fingers crossed the rain will stay away for the third day in a row Very Happy

hugs
rose....who wonders ?? affraid ummm is this a pepper coming in?
potatoes :) 05_29_17
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Post  oxmyx1 5/29/2011, 8:14 pm

Hi - I love reading about potatoes! This is my first year to attempt gardening of any kind at home and I now also volunteer at our community farm in Santa Fe. The CEO there let me experiment with potatoes. First off, WAY late to get potatoes in but what the heck! I got 5 lb of Kennebecs and 5 of Norland reds - half of each i put in a 4 inch rototilled trench and covered with dirt. The other half of each i covered with straw. GUESS which one(s) is/are growing better? Of course, our issue is getting enough water to them. Our watering system for the farm needs work, for sure.

I also tried a couple of spuds in a pair of cardboard boxes on the south side of my house. They are doing NOTHING. they probably rotted. oh well.

I'll get pics of my little experimentals this week!
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/29/2011, 8:47 pm

this is fun....

i hope we can keep up with this thread and post how the potatoes are doing and how the harvest is Very Happy

potatoes are my all time favorite.....if i had to pick just one food to eat forever it would be potatoes.....i tried for the first time last year to grow them...but i didnt plant seed potatoes....i bought some organic potatoes and tried them....they grew nice green healthy leaves....we were so excited....yet...we only got four small taters..... No

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rose.....who misses her dad...who has been gone three years now....who grew her family potatoes every year and she never once asked him....what his secert was to great potatoes.....
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Post  Pam Hazelwood 5/29/2011, 9:02 pm

I've got lots and lots of nice green healthy leaves and tried to peek and see if anything was growing and couldn't find even one little spud. I think I've only had a few of the plants bloom.....we'll see. I've been so excited, but it may be "all for naught"! I'm going to wait a while and peek again.
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Post  MSJ 5/29/2011, 9:09 pm

I bought seed potatoes at the nursery. When I cut them in pieces to let them dry out I noticed that they are a little green. I thought buying them at the nursery I would be okay. I need to know if they are safe to plant because I was planning on planting tomorrow. Will they be okay?
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Post  NHGardener 5/29/2011, 9:26 pm

oxmyx1, just wanted to let you know, we had had a conversation about Burbanks and I planted grocery store Burbanks. Well, sure enough, after 2 weeks they weren't any further along than when I planted them (I dug a couple up and looked at them). So they were probably sprayed with the retardant or whatever that is. I ended up picking up sprouting seed Burbanks at the feed store.
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Post  FamilyGardening 5/29/2011, 9:36 pm

MSJ wrote:I bought seed potatoes at the nursery. When I cut them in pieces to let them dry out I noticed that they are a little green. I thought buying them at the nursery I would be okay. I need to know if they are safe to plant because I was planning on planting tomorrow. Will they be okay?

i know you are not suppose to eat them if they have green on them....but i dont know about planting them....i didnt cut mine....hope someone will chime in Very Happy

hugs
rose....who is thinking about going out shopping for plants and flowers Laughing
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Post  Old Hippie 5/29/2011, 10:15 pm

Oxmyx1, I planted some extra Kennebecs I had one year in a cardboard box. They did fine, but the box fell apart on me. I did get some spuds from them although not as many as I had hoped. I was trying the thing where you keep covering them up and are supposed to get a whole lot of potatoes.

In my compost book it says green potatoes are fine for planting just not for eating. They go that way from being in the light. You just aren't supposed to eat them. Mine are almost always a bit green that I plant. According to my compost book, you can grow them in straight compost. Just don't use manure on them as that makes them scabby.

I cut mine into pieces so I have two or three 'eyes' or starts of sprouts on each piece. It is good to let them dry for a day before you plant them then, so they don't just rot.

Don't be in too much of a rush to dig up your spuds. Give them time to produce something for you. They take anywhere from 90 to 120 days from planting sprouting tubers to maturity. You can dig some a bit sooner if you like small ones to cook whole.

Gwynn (we love our spuds too!)
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Post  walshevak 5/30/2011, 1:05 am

I never grew potatos before, but saw some blue ones at Walmart and decided to give it a try. Planted 2 bins on Mar 17, one for me and one for my son. Took his to him in early April and while I was gone mine got hit by a frost.

Here are mine on 4/20. They came back well.

potatoes :) Imgp1326

and again on 5/4
potatoes :) Imgp1452

My son's bin on 4/20. He didn't have a frost.

potatoes :) Imgp1327

Had to take mine to his house for the summer. Here they are together on 5/10. His are bigger

potatoes :) Imgp1453

Now on 5/29 mine are showing signs of stress and are not doing so well. His are still going strong. Same MM and same bale of straw as filler, but there may be a difference in the amount of MM mixed with the straw.

potatoes :) Potato10

No signs of blooms yet for either bin.

Kay

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Post  FamilyGardening 5/30/2011, 2:41 am

oh....i love potatoes stories and pictures!!

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rose....who really wants to plant a colored potatoe Laughing
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Post  Nonna.PapaVino 5/30/2011, 9:42 am

FamilyG, go for it, get some kids to help you select what color potato to plant, and encourage them to help you plant them. Several years ago, we grew both Yukon Gold and some All Blue potatoes. At first it was funny to see the look on folks faces when the blue mashed potatoes were put on the table, and again when they discovered it didn't taste any different from white mashed. Just don't mix yellow and blue potatoes for mashing....the result is a khaki color that is not visually appetizing. Somewhere out there in Google land is a recipe for patriotic potato salad, made from red potatoes (with their skins left on) and blue potatoes. For potato lovers, this site from Washington State University--in the middle of prime potato growing land--on just about everything you ever wanted to know about potatoes, and lists of suppliers of seed potatoes world wide: http://potatoes.wsu.edu/links/vars.html This year, we're growing Kennebec, Purple Viking, and Makah Ozette. Nonna
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Post  Goosegirl 5/30/2011, 12:21 pm

Potatoes - Yukon Gold's - planted 4-22-11. Not a hint of a sprout. Rolling Eyes How much longer should I wait before I just use the space for something else? potatoes :) 601593

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