Planting Potatoes

Planting Potatoes

Planting PotatoesSpring is coming and it’s about time to start planting potatoes. Planting potatoes is something that should be done a few weeks before the last freeze. Potatoes prefer the cooler temperature and soil as direct sunlight can turn them green and ruin the taste.

Planting potatoes is very simple and while there are a number of different planting methods the old tried and true method involves digging trenches about two feet apart, mounding the soil in between the trenches, and using this soil to hill the potato plants as they grow. Hilling is a process that can be very beneficial to potatoes. Every time your potato vines reach about 6 to 8 inches high you should cover them up with soil and or mulch, this is Hilling. It’s recommended to use soil the first time then mulch or a mixture afterwards. Mulch can help the roots breath, allow more water to get used, and helps protect against potato¬†beetles.

When To Harvest Potatoes

A simple method to determine when to harvest potatoes is to watch for them to start flowering. After you notice them flowering dig around a few in the top soil around the vines to see if you can find any potatoes. Be careful pulling these as you don’t want to damage the plant and allow the others to continue to grow. Because potatoes thrive on cooler grounds they can live through a few light frosts which allows you even more time to harvest depending on your climate. However is you live where the temperature can get into the upper 90’s in the early spring then it might be a good idea to harvest sooner rather than later.

The Potato Digger!

patato diggerWell this is a new one for me. As I’m still very new to this I’m learning new equipment and new things everyday which makes this job awesome. What better attachment to dig up potatoes than a potato digger. This attachment has a curved blade¬†in the front that digs up dirt that then gets shifted through the grid bars while leaving the potatoes in a nice pile on top as it moves along the ground surface. I know that this is mainly for larger gardens but honestly even for mid sized gardens this thing can save you a lot of time. Here is a link if you are interested in it, Potato Digger

 

Potato Digger In Action

Want to see this potato digger in action and see how well it works for yourself check out this video.




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