DoubleDogFarm
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I'm more interested in yield from pounds planted, not feet. Did you get 10 pounds for every pound planted. Not everyone has 75ft for potatoes. The small backyard gardener can judge harvest by ratio better than footage.


Eric

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soil
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that's funny because they leave our strawberries and carrots alone, they go crazy for onions and potatoes.

nice yield though from the rows. do you eat a lot of potatoes?
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jal_ut
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DDF, I didn't weigh the seed taters. I doubt if it was over 7 or 8 pounds though, for over 200 pounds of taters. I consider it a very worthwhile return. I planted some that had been in storage through winter. Didn't cost me a thing. I cut them with two eyes per set. Just thinking about planting a little piece of potato maybe 1 to 1 1/2 inch with two eyes on it and getting back 4 or more of those nice taters for that little set I planted. If I planted one per foot, I had about 70 plants in that planting. You do the math.


soil, Weird, I have never had any trouble with anything eating my onions. Eat a lot of potatoes? Not so much now that its just me and the wife, but when the kids were home, ya, we ate a lot of potatoes. I used to grow a ton each year.

I put some in a pit last fall, its about time to go dig some up. If the gophers didn't find my stash. I was hoping for the snow to get off before opening the pit, but I may just go do it snow and all. Just looking at my notes, I put 77 pounds of taters in the pit along with carrots, cabbage, beets and a turnip. Now I really want to go open the pit. We bought a head of cabbage and it had zero flavor. I have not put cabbage in a pit before, so it will be interesting to see if it made it.
Gardening at 5000 feet elevation, zone 4/5 Northern Utah, Frost free from May 25 to September 8 +/-

DoubleDogFarm
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70 plants @ 200 pounds. Thats about 2.85lbs per plant. So if you harvested 4 potatoes per plant, that equates to about .71lbs per potato or about 12oz.

Lets say you planted 10lbs. That's a return rate of 20lbs per 1lb planted.

I think you should be very proud. :D

Eric

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jal_ut
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Pride is no virtue! I try to remain humble. You may say I am pleased and thankful.
Last edited by jal_ut on Thu Mar 10, 2011 6:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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DoubleDogFarm
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Thankful, Indeed.

Eric

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jal_ut
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This is an Experiment

[img]https://donce.lofthouse.com/jamaica/tater.jpg[/img]

I planted this big spud with multiple shoots as an experiment.

[img]https://donce.lofthouse.com/jamaica/taters_h.JPG[/img]

This is what I got out of it. Of course there is multiplication and a gain in weight, but I don't think any of those potatoes were as large as the one I planted. This is what I expected. If you want larger potatoes it is best to cut sets with one or two eyes for planting. Each one of those shoots will send up a vine and produce a tuber or two, however because the vines are so crowded the tubers do not get as large as they would if the vine had more room and was not in competition for sunlight and soil water and nutrients.
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wordwiz
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I have not tried it yet, as I don't have the right terrain but my grandpa told me a neat way he used on hills. Dig out a furrow about a foot deep and line it with an old carpet. Scatter a layer of straw then plant the potatoes as normal. Cover them with more straw and gently water. Once the plants grew about six inches tall, add more straw to make a hill

At the end of the season, remove the straw. He had four sons so the oldest three stood at the top of the hill and grabbed the carpet. He and his youngest son stood at the bottom with burlap bags. The ones at the top would start pulling on the rug, causing the potatoes to roll down the hill into the bags!

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soil
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causing the potatoes to roll down the hill into the bags!
sounds like a nice way to bruise the spuds, but great story.
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Bobberman
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You are not going to tell me now that that is where the name carpet baggers came from!!
I enjoy fishing ,gardening and a solar greenhouse! carpet installation repair and sales for over 45 years! I am the inventor of the Bobber With A Brain - Fishing Bobber!

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Gary350
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My grandfather use to grow some good potatoes in Illinois. He cut off the potatoe eyes placed them on the soil surface and covered them with about 1" of soil. As the plants grew he kept covering them up with more soil to make a hill row. He always had 1 row of pototes about 50 ft long and about a ft tall. When the plants turned yellow and started to die he pulled the plants out of the soil by hand and most of the potatoes stayed attached to the plants and pulled right out of the ground. He let the potatoes dry in the sun for a short time then put them in the seller.

When I lived in Illinois I could grow good potatoes too but I can not grow good potatoes in Tennessee. I think it is too HOT here. RED potatoes grow best for me.

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Ozark Lady
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I do have slightly acidic soil, and I do normally grow good potatoes, when nothing else will grow. Not so for 2010 it was just too dry, driest year in 65 years for here. They gave up and died almost instantly, 2009 was not good either, too wet, and they rotted. Here's hoping 2011 will do much better.

But, I turn the bed well, then lay the potato eyes, and then sprinkle dirt back over them, only about 1/4" thick. I cover the whole planting with dry leaves, and water it well. Once the potatoes are up and growing well, I continue adding leaves, until leaves simply won't stay put on the beds.
The potatoes grow well, and bloom like crazy, soon it is a beehive of activity. Then they set seeds and start dying back, usually with the approach of fall. Often, it is actually too warm for them to store well, when the last tops die back, so the issue then becomes, what to do with them. The answer is normally, let them dry, cure, and air out some, then take them inside under a/c until outside temps cool some, about the end of November they can go outside again.

When I dig them, I do sometimes have bug issues... they look like grubs, I assume they are june bug grubs? They also are very hard on carrots, and tulips. Of course, you can spot the bug weakened plants before they even begin to bloom. I am not sure that I have ever seen a gopher, other than in photos or cartoons.
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ozark_rocks
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jal_ut wrote:Growing potatoes is no big deal. The problem is there has been a hundred different things tried and most of those has been published at one time or the other. Lets keep it simple! Have you ever been to a potato farm? Here is how the pros do it and it works. Forget all those other goofy instructions and just do this:

Plant in good fertile soil. Fertile being the key word here.
Plant the sets 4 inches deep 12 to 14 inches apart. One or two eyes per set.
When the plant is 8 inches tall, hill it, one time. Pull up three to 4 inches of soil around the plant. This to keep the tubers from seeing daylight and turning green.
Keep the soil damp.
Control the bugs.
When the plant dies down dig them spuds.

No use making such a simple thing complicated.

Edit to add: Planting time is one week before your average last frost.
I hill my potatoes with a hoe and it is easier for me to hill up, a little at a time as they grow, than to do it all at once. Also, I have to plant in early March way before my last frost date(April 15) to beat the heat we get in May. Some old timers plant their potatoes in Febuary, but my garden is usualy to wet to work then. In cooler climates waiting to plant is probably best, but it does not work for me.

DeborahL
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James, I can't wait till you open the pit ! I remember when you dug it.
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tedly
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What is the purpose of hilling the plants? I got a package of 10 seed potatoes from Home Depot last year and just put them in the ground, no cutting or mounding or anything, and ended up with about 8 pounds of small red potatoes. This year I'm going to cut the seed taters up, but just wondering if mounding them will get any better results.

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jal_ut
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If the tubers form and push upwards and the sun hits them, they turn green and bitter. The green is actually toxic. The reason to hill them is to provide a cover over those tubers so they don't see the light. No other reason.

You will get larger tubers if you cut your potatoes with one or two eyes per piece to plant.
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