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I Planted My First Potatoes!

 
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Location: Roberts, Montana
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Is all this talk above about white potatoes?  What are the differences in growing sweet potatoes?  Just how much space do they really need?
 
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I've always thought of the differences more of a climate issue rather than a space issue.

Here's a good article:
https://homeguides.sfgate.com/difference-between-white-potato-vs-sweet-potato-plants-40252.html

I can grow Irish potatoes but not sweet potatoes where I live, we have too cool and too short a season.

Hope this helps,

Sandy
 
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Christopher Shepherd wrote:I just sprinkle them with a home made dry sprinkler.  A large mouth jar with five 1/4" holes drilled in the lid works good.  I only target the beetles, because there are lady bugs and lighting bugs all over the place that do no harm.  I saw a hand sprinkler at tsc.  It was like $17, to much for me.  



Going to go make one right now!  Awesome idea!

Sandy
 
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Dawn Mattison wrote:Is all this talk above about white potatoes?  What are the differences in growing sweet potatoes?  Just how much space do they really need?



Dawn, The reason I planted white potatoes is because of the quarantine.  All I had were potatoes from the grocery store.

I have always planted flowers while dear hubby planted vegetables.

I have done squash from transplants so mostly all I do is water them.

I may try sweet potatoes one day if I can get slips.

The curing part has always scared me.  Here are some threads:

https://permies.com/t/92644/Harvest-Cure-Sweet-Potatoes

https://permies.com/t/110375/Sweet-potatoes-buckets-trellis

 
Anne Miller
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I quit water so I could go ahead and dig the potatoes.

I will say I had lots of beautiful plants so I was expecting beautiful potatoes.

This project was a total failure.  I didn't even get the number of potatoes that I planted.

The biggest potato was 3 inches and that is basically the only potato I got.  It was about where the sprinkle was so that makes me think they just did not get enough water.

I got maybe two handfuls of grape size potatoes. Maybe these can be used to grow more potatoes?

If I do decide to try this again, maybe I will try planting in pots as I am tired of battleing ants.
 
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So sorry Anne.  Sometimes our best efforts yield poor results.

My harvest did reasonably well. I ended up with almost 33 pounds out of the five I planted. My last bed is Kennebecs and they've been a challenge. They were heavily mulched and still the bed stayed too dry. We had several days of rain and they're finally looking good. Waiting for them to die down so I can harvest the potatoes.

I've never had much luck with potatoes in pots.  However I did some in pot composting over the winter and evidently I had put some Kennebec peelings in a pot, covered with mulch, and then forgot about it. When I grabbed the pot this spring I had several shoots coming up (way too many in fact), yet I added more mulch to protect from the cold and basically ignored it except for the time of two I actually gave it some water. The foliage died down and I emptied the pot. I ended up with two pounds of small potatoes.  While that's not really anything worth bragging about, the amazing thing is that those two pounds of potatoes came from something that was destined for the compost pile.
 
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I planted most of my potatoes in the nascent forest garden (i.e., a foot-thick carpet of aged wood chips in part sun).  This week I noticed that most of them were dying.  I dug one up experimentally, and discovered that potatoes were rotting under there!

The wood chips were almost always damp, but I watered pretty heavily during the drought.  I guess too heavily!  We had a big rainstorm for two days (several inches) and four days later, another one (at least 2 inches).  Then I noticed how bedraggled they were.

There are perfectly good potatoes under there, too, so I'm going to harvest them before they are no good.

The best news is, those wood chips are really rotting!  Crawling with mycelium.  Perhaps this is why the drainage was compromised.  I really thought the wood chips would drain easily.  But it's turning to soil, and that's the whole point!
 
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