SLC
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I Need Help With Potatoes - NEED MORE ADVICE (see 6th post)

I have searched all around here and the Internet and I cannot find the answers.

In the diagram below it shows the space I have for potatoes, but how far away from the marigolds and beans and peppers can I plant the potatoes? Since they are underground, can they be closer to these other plants or do these other plants have deep roots? I am cutting the seed potatoes up now and I don't know how many to cut.

Also in the diagram below it has the space available for potatoes, but within that small space, what is the minimum I can plant the potatoes if I want large ones? These will all be Russet potatoes.

Also, if one cut up seed has more than one eye growing already but they are close together, should I cut them apart or leave the two? Will they both grow into plants and grow potatoes since they are on the same seed or is it better to separate them into two seeds?

Also, if the eyes that are already growing are already 6-8 inches long should I bury them deeper or cut them or let them stick out of the ground?

Please please help! Thank you!

[img]https://img.photobucket.com/albums/1003/SecretlyLovesClay/Garden/Untitled-1.jpg[/img]
Last edited by SLC on Fri May 04, 2012 11:06 am, edited 2 times in total.

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digitS'
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SLC, I wouldn't plant potatoes tighter than 1 per 1 square foot and I'd want no more than 2 eyes if they were that close. My potatoes are grown in 4 foot wide beds; not so much because that is perfect for them but because, all of my vegetables are in 4 foot wide beds :wink: . The potatoes go into 2 rows and are staggered at about 18 to 24 inches apart. So you see, they have quite a bit more room than 1ft².

Crowding or leaving more eyes on a seed piece just means that you will have smaller tubers. Sometimes, you want small potatoes but those russets are especially good for baking and you say you want "large."

I have struggled with long shoots but I suppose that I didn't have to. They could probably be broken off and the seed will just produce new eyes. It didn't seem like the best idea so I've just been careful to get the entire shoot into the ground, unbroken.

It seems like I remember something about beans and potatoes being good companions but I don't think I'd crowd them too much. Pole beans could probably be much closer than bush beans. I will often fill a bed with bush beans and then have to "corral" them with twine to keep them from flopping into the paths. The potatoes also have this problem of spreading out as they become mature plants.

That's a good looking diagram! I hope I was of some help.

Steve
We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. ~ Gwendolyn Brooks

mscratch
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yes, the tubers will grow beneath the ground but you must also consider the leafy tops as they will get quite huge and the beans are going to spread out too so you must allow for air circulation or you will end up with some serious fungal nasties.

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nes
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You also have the option of spacing them closely together, then thinning them out by harvesting some new potatoes.

Don't sweat it so much! :) No matter how much you do it planning won't make your garden grow, just sun, water, fertilizer & work!

You'd better get them in the ground, I planted my russet a couple weeks ago and I'm expecting them for early September.

I did not bury mine very deeply (few inches) and I'm planning on mounding up around them mid-summer.
Vanessa raising organic vegetables, livestock, wildflowers, and family in zone 5A.

Kim Smiley
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Good graph! After a couple of years of trying potatoes in my raised beds I switched to soft growing bags for potatoes. way easier and I don't have to worry about grubs or other pests. and I get all of my harvest by just dumping the bag out. I think 80% of gardening is trial and error so go with your gut and make notes for next season. :flower:
Kimberly

SLC
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Please help, I don't know what to do! So, ORIGINALLY, the forecast was rain all this week, then clearing on Friday getting sunny, and sunny Saturday, Sunday and Monday at least. Well, now, it's been raining ALL WEEK, and it's still raining and will clear today, but stay cloudy and rain again tonight, then finally get sunny tomorrow, stay sunny Sunday and Monday, but then rain again all next week!!!!!!

Thinking it was going to be clearing up, I cut up my potatoes Wednesday night to prepare them for planting on Friday afternoon, which, apparently, will now be Saturday afternoon or possibly Sunday.

With all of this rain, will the poatoes survive? Or will they rot from the wet soil? And then more rain? Please help!!! Should I wait another week until it stops raining? But they are already cut up....

I do have a 18 inch raised garden bed with good soil (first time - just built) so it's not mud out there, it's just wet soil.

Please help - I need advice!

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applestar
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If you are planning to plant them in this raised bed, I think you could dig down to the bottom of the bed -- maybe 4-6" inches above the grade, put your seed potatoes there, and cover with 2-4" soil. Keep the rest of the soil in reserve somewhere and fill the holes with that as they grow or -- and actually this is what I would do -- mix the soil with some mulch (leaves, pine needles, hay, straw, grass clippings, etc.) and use to hill the potatoes as they grow.

SLC
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Is it okay to do even though it's wet with all the rain we've had with even more rain coming though?

It hasn't been pouring, just rain on and off or constant sprinkling.

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nes
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What planting zone are you in?

In gardening, like farming, sometimes you're running up against pretty hard deadlines and you've got to put the seed in the ground rain or shine. Those potatoes are going to take about 120-140 days to get to full size; might go a little faster if we've got great weather, you've got fertile soil, but pretty much that's it.

Potatoes will be fine with a little water, can't tell you if they're going to drown without knowing more about your soil & drainage. If you don't have a choice because things are the way they are, you're just going to have to put the potatoes in the ground & hope for a crop or you'll be standing around waiting for perfect and get nothing 'cause you waited too long.

You're worrying too much! Gardening is supposed to be FUN! :flower:
Vanessa raising organic vegetables, livestock, wildflowers, and family in zone 5A.

SLC
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I am in central Connecticut - how do I find out what zone I am in?

ETA: Okay, I did a search and it looks like I am Zone 6...so is there a planting guide for Zone 6? I am not sure what this means.

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nes
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You zone will tell you when your frost date is, which is around Oct 15th.

In order to get in 140 days before it is supposed to frost in your area you need to have your potatoes in the ground before the end of May (the 28th but I'd aim for at least a week earlier just in case).

So what ever you're doing to do, you'd better do it quickly.

If the weather is looking better for next week you can wait, but you don't want to wait 3 weeks for good weather then loose your crop on the other end of the season.
Vanessa raising organic vegetables, livestock, wildflowers, and family in zone 5A.

Lintu
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SLC wrote:I am in central Connecticut - how do I find out what zone I am in?

ETA: Okay, I did a search and it looks like I am Zone 6...so is there a planting guide for Zone 6? I am not sure what this means.
SLC, I'm in coastal CT and have had the same weather. Our potatoes (planted about 2-3 weeks ago) are flourishing.

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rainbowgardener
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I'm in zone 6 and I planted my potatoes in mid-March. They went through a few frosts and near frosts and are flourishing.
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applestar
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I would plant them sooner than later. Raised bed should be drier (or at least less wet) than the ground and should drain/dry out sooner. Long period of cold and wet can ruin the seed potatoes, but I think you'll be OK.

I believe chances of spoilage is also greater when it gets hot. Typically, seed potatoes CAN be planted about two-three weeks before average last frost when soil temp warms to around 55ºF (when you start seeing forsythias and ornamental pears blooming). My potato planting guide is upstairs so I'll go look and see later if it says anything about upper temp limit.

If you are expecting warmer/hot weather, I recommend mulching the potato bed to help keep the soil cool.

Good luck. :wink:

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GardenRN
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nes wrote: you're just going to have to put the potatoes in the ground & hope for a crop or you'll be standing around waiting for perfect and get nothing 'cause you waited too long.

You're worrying too much! Gardening is supposed to be FUN! :flower:
Exactly, just do it. If its raining that means you don't have to water things in. It's easier work for you!
Jeff

USDA Zone 7a, Sunset Zone 32.

Failure is only a fact when you give up.



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