Brandywinegirl
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Tater Towers?

I saw Tater Towers on Territorial Seed Company's website. I get an ok amount of potatoes, but not as many as I would like. Has anyone tried this? It's $64.00.

Thanks!
Brandywine

Eat, Sleep, Garden and ... then Eat What You've Grown!

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RamonaGS
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Re: Tater Towers?

I don't know how "Tater Towers" are supposed to work, but I am trying something with my potatoes that is supposed to grow more potatoes, and maybe you know about this already, or even tried it.

Potatoes actually grow as part of the stem of the plant, so when you plant them, as they grow up from the soil/mulch, you bury the stem of the plant just leaving the foliage exposed, and you do this everyday. The plant will grow a taller stem to push the top of the potato plant further above the soil. so you end up with a very long stem buried under the soil surface and it grows potatoes along the full length of it. I was told this practice works well for people who grow potatoes at home, but I am only trying it out for the first time this year, lol I can only say from experience so far, that the potato plants are in fact pushing the foliage of the plant further up, past the surface of the mulch as I am burying the stems like I was told they would. Hopefully the other part of the information is true too, and I will get lots of yummy potatoes! If you have tried this, and it didn't work though, I would be interested in your feedback, and opinion on it. :)
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

TZ -OH6
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Re: Tater Towers?

Sorry to pop the bubble, :cry: but it is a gimic.


Potatoes will not do that, at least not the kind most people have access to. Modern commercial potatoes have been bred to put out one batch of tubers close to the stem at a certain point in the season and then die. No amount of hilling will change that tendency. If the varieties did otherwise the farmer could not control size or maturity at harvest time, two things very important to him.

Potatoes closer to wild type send stolons out further from the main stem and the tubers may then break the surface and green up, making them unfit for eating (poisonous). Cultivars that are not so seasonaly adapted will put out stolons that grow into new stems rather than forming tubers, or early tubers may sprout, and at the end of the season when frost kills the vine you have a colony of plants with tubers of several different ages, but the tubers are not necessarily high on the stem.

By continuously hilling before the plant can put out leaves you "may" elongate the section of stem near the base from which the tubers normally form, but that would only stretch out the production within the hill vertically, not increase the number of tubers.

If you want more potatoes give the roots good deep soil and give the tops plenty of room to spread out and absorb light. Two stems per foot of row and three feet between rows gives good results and big tubers, spacing closer gives smaller tubers, too close and total production declines. If towers worked any better farmers would have fields full of them right next to the upside down tomatoes.

Brandywinegirl
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Re: Tater Towers?

Upside down tomatoes - yeah, THAT worked!! LOL!! Thank you both for your replies! I would be better off just growing more taters if I want more. :)
Brandywine

Eat, Sleep, Garden and ... then Eat What You've Grown!

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RamonaGS
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Re: Tater Towers?

TZ -OH6 wrote:Sorry to pop the bubble, :cry: but it is a gimic.


Potatoes will not do that, at least not the kind most people have access to. Modern commercial potatoes have been bred to put out one batch of tubers close to the stem at a certain point in the season and then die. No amount of hilling will change that tendency. If the varieties did otherwise the farmer could not control size or maturity at harvest time, two things very important to him.

Potatoes closer to wild type send stolons out further from the main stem and the tubers may then break the surface and green up, making them unfit for eating (poisonous). Cultivars that are not so seasonaly adapted will put out stolons that grow into new stems rather than forming tubers, or early tubers may sprout, and at the end of the season when frost kills the vine you have a colony of plants with tubers of several different ages, but the tubers are not necessarily high on the stem.

By continuously hilling before the plant can put out leaves you "may" elongate the section of stem near the base from which the tubers normally form, but that would only stretch out the production within the hill vertically, not increase the number of tubers.

If you want more potatoes give the roots good deep soil and give the tops plenty of room to spread out and absorb light. Two stems per foot of row and three feet between rows gives good results and big tubers, spacing closer gives smaller tubers, too close and total production declines. If towers worked any better farmers would have fields full of them right next to the upside down tomatoes.
Well poop! I was hoping it would work, but I guess I'll stop burying my potato stems, lol! It's all good though TZ, because I'd rather put my effort into the garden that will work to get more goods out of my plants.
~~Ramona mother of fur babies~~

Dillbert
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Re: Tater Towers?

I've watched people spend / use / try many many things "of novelty" for growing potatoes - not much of any worked 'better' - most failed super miserably.

some years you get more than others - also depends on the variety you're growing.

no clue about "burying my potato stems" - I buy / use seed potatoes - cut into pcs with 1-2 eyes per pc, allow to dry / skin over the cuts for 48 hrs, plant those.

if you're 'pre-growing' then transplanting potatoes, wonder if that is stunting / setting back the plants?

and, the green that forms from light on the potato is actually not a serious"poison" - it can be an irritant to a very small percentage of humans and only in the point ten-thousandth % of humans will it result in any health issue. if you've been eating potatoes, and you're not dead yet, you're not so severely allergic to the green bits (solanine, iffin' you wanna look it up.)

TZ -OH6
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Re: Tater Towers?

If you only have one seed potato you can plant it in a pot of potting mix and then pull off the shoots as they come up and start to root. Transplant them. It is not good for production, but you're doing it to multiply future seed. Most people would never do it, but if someone gives you a single Tazmanian purple jumping potato you might want to try it.

I just saw a part or a study about size of seed vs size and production of tubers. Bigger is better so stick with egg-sized peices, at a minimum. But you can plant pea-sized tubers or smaller and get plants.

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