Planting Potatoes: Soil Preparation Is The Key To Growing Potatoes | Canberra weather



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It is almost time for chiting and that means preparing the plot for the potatoes. Potatoes are an easy crop to grow and love deep, fertile soil with good moisture during their growing season. Start preparing the soil now, a few weeks before planting. Sweet potatoes need rich, deep friable soils with a pH of around 5.5 – 6. Soils with a pH higher than this can lead to a disease called potato scab, so do not lime the soils. to grow potatoes. The humble potato has achieved gourmet status with many cultivars offering a range of textures and flavors that make it difficult to choose which strain to grow. There is undoubtedly a potato for all tastes and occasions, all offering superb flavor. Varieties such as Desiree, Kennebec, Dutch Cream, and King Edward should be easy to find at your local nursery. For something with a more gourmet appeal, look for Kipfler, Saphire, Royal Blue, Ruby Lou, and White Star. Most gourmet varieties are available by mail order, but try your local nursery first. Be sure to buy only certified seed potatoes to reduce the risk of disease in your crop. The way to grow potatoes is just as diverse as the varieties. They can be grown in the ground, in bags, containers, wick beds, and gardens without digging. For the laidback gardener, special potato sacks with an access flap on the side make it easy to ‘Bandicoot’ for potatoes without having to harvest the entire crop. Seed potatoes can be sown directly or before planting, place the seed potatoes in a well-lit area but not in full sun for a few weeks so that they develop small shoots. This process is called ‘chitting’. Once the shoots start to develop, you can remove all but the strongest two shoots and grow them to about an inch long before you plant. Plant seed potatoes or chips to a depth of 10-15cm and space them 20-30cm apart and backfill the trench. As the stems appear above the ground, a mound of soil or mulch like straw around them as they continue to grow, continue up to 2 feet, this will increase yields and will prevent the tubers from being exposed to light which makes them green and poisonous with solanine. Harvesting the potatoes will take around 12 weeks or more depending on the variety. Early potatoes can be hollowed out at any time, but to store the potatoes wait until the plants have flowered or begin to wilt, the potatoes at this stage are ripe and will keep for weeks once. harvested. Whether boiled, mashed, baked or fried, potatoes are a crop anyone can grow successfully, so dig in.




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