Vegetable Growing : Potatoes
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I've just read nearly all the answers on spuds. I"m not sure any of them answersed mine. My potatoes are in various stages of dieback, some completely, some half way ect. My problem is, I have started to dig them and I"m finding good ones and rotten ones under each stalk, their Roosters, and I have sprayed for blight on a regular basis. The stalks don"t look blighted, can I save the good ones and are they safe to eat? Also, their only medium to small size.
hatch, Lanesborough, Co Longford Posted: 27/08/2012
This is more than likely caused by potato blight, various plants are at various stages of withering due to varying levels of disease attack. Potatoes being lifted and already rotting is a sign of attack by blight spores that were washed down the stems a few weeks ago.
Despite spraying, the weather was washing sprays off as soon as they were put on.
The best bet is to now cut away all remaining foliage and hope for the best. Rotting can spread underground as potatoes touch and secondary rots set in after blight damage in damp soil conditions. If this is happening, you will need to consider lifting the ptoatoes early. 'Rooster' is a maincrop storage variety and not normally lifted until late September or October.
I've grown Nicola potatoes in the same ground for the last two seasons and wonder can they be put there again for the third season. I've heard where they should be moved to a different spot every couple of years. Nothing else has ever been grown in this particular bit of ground.
simon k., ballytrain, Co Monaghan Posted: 26/01/2012
It is best to move potatoes in a rotation to new ground as there is a danger of a build up of potato eelworm which results in stunted plants and few small potatoes.
This pest overwinters in the soil and builds up in numbers over the years.
'Nicola' is resistant to the yellow eelworm which is the most common but not to the white form. 'Sante' is resitant to both.
What size for vegetable plots
I am hoping for the first time to plant a vegetable garden and am in the planning stages. For a family size garden, what size areas chould I allow for say potatoes, carrot, parsnips, onions etc.
Charlie Crown, Granard, Co Longford Posted: 05/01/2012
A lot of produce can be had from an area as small as 5 metres by five metres, or even just two by two. The main thing is not to take on too much initially.
It is best to concentrate on the quick-growing crops such as radish, lettuce and rocket to start with and gain some early success. Try carrots, peas, broad beans, french beans, onion sets, courgette and garlic first. Then you might decide that you have space for bulky cabbage family crops and potatoes.
Sweet corn can be tried and pumpkins but need a good deal of space.
Do not worry too much about quantity of vegetables needed. Concentrate at first on small areas and small amounts of produce, sowing just a few seeds at a time and repeating if needed, just getting to know how the various vegetables behave and their needs.
Never let weeds get taller that your thumb ... using a light hoe on a windy sunny day ideally.
As expertise grows, you can work out how much of each crop you are likely to use, how many onions in a winter, for instance.
potatoes in same ground
Can I plant potatoes next year in the plot i used this year?
211020111, mitchelstown, Co Cork Posted: 24/10/2011
Potoatoes can be grown in the same ground but there is a risk of disease and pest buildup, notably blackleg disease, especially if seed potatoes are saved, and the biggest threat comes from a build-up of potato eelworm, which greatly reduce yield.
If a patch of plants across a few rows shows signs of poor weak growth, eelworm is to be suspected, and the tiny round eelworm cysts can be seen on the potato plants roots and underground stems.
potatoes with purple flesh
Some of my 'Record' potatoes have purple flesh. What causes this and are they edible.
lilylily, cork, Co Cork Posted: 08/10/2011
'Record' should have yellow flesh. It may be that some other variety has been mixed in. There no disease or pest that causes this. Perhaps a mineral imbalance. These potatoes should be edible but without determining the exact cause, this is difficult to say.
Premature die back of potatoes
I have had a problem with premature die back of potatoes for a number of years resulting in reduced size of tubers. It is not blight as the tubers are not affected. This year I was growing Sarpo Axona and Orla. The same problem has effected my greenhouse tomatoes, grown in growbags, this year.
My neighbour grew the same potatoes without this problem.
Have been growing vegetables in this garden for more than 25 years and I think it is getting tired and diseased.
PhilipWalton, Moycullen, Co Galway Posted: 02/09/2011
Soil does nto get tired, as such, but it does build up pests and diseases and it sounds very much like a poato eelworm problem.
These are tiny worms that feed on potato roots and stems underground and cause early wilting and small tubers in a bad attack. The eelworm stays in the soil and attacks each year.
There is no control except to use eelworm resistant varieties such as 'Santé' and 'Valor'.
Tomatoes in grow bags are vulnerable to drought and many tomatoes have performed badly due to a dull, cool summer.