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Growing Potatoes: A New Approach


Do you know well what potatoes and how to plant? Do not rush to answer: in our time, some old-time techniques work fine, but others have changed a lot.


If you are determined to receive a decent crop of potatoes, you need to regularly bribe in one of the specialized organizations quality seed material, rather than hoping for their put off for planting tubers. After all, this culture is susceptible to viral diseases, which negatively affect the yield. The most aggressive viruses reduce it up to 90% of the volume. In addition, weakened by viral infections, plants are more susceptible to fungal diseases, which wilt and lag behind in growth. And since the potato is a vegetatively propagated culture, all the diseases that the plants “caught” during the season are preserved in the tubers. In order not to carry them to the future, an update is necessary.


Early (Meteor, Bullfinch, Luck).  Few will refuse the young potatoes! In addition, if you dig up the tubers gradually, then the total yield is greater.

Delicious (Bullfinch, Hope).  In shops, potatoes of foreign varieties are most often sold, which is more suitable for salads or frying. But among the domestic varieties of many options with delicious friable tubers.

Unusual (Northern Lights).  On the shelves, there are no useful potatoes with a purple flesh. But you can grow it yourself.

Where to look

Seed potatoes must be produced by a specialized organization. It is responsible for quality (conformity to the variety and absence of disease). Usually, this is confirmed by appropriate certificates or (from small firms) an impeccable reputation. But potatoes taken elsewhere will force us to “play roulette”: the purchase can bring joy, and can bring trouble (for example, in the form of a golden potato nematode).

Discard the purchase

Do not take potatoes if you see more than one rotten tuber or several potatoes covered in more than one-third of ordinary or black scab (Rhizoctonia) in the bag or bag. At points where tubers are attached to plants, there should be no rot, damp spots or mold. Lonely rotten must be asked to replace.

Seed tubers

If we are talking about a disease-free, quality material from professionals, then tubers from 2.5-2.8 cm in diameter are already standard. But the amateur “trifle” can be both normal and testify about the problems. Sometimes experts indicate the maximum size (55 mm), but gardeners can safely plant and larger potatoes.

Do not be scared if the tubers:

  • have several dry depressions (potatoes are crumpled during storage);
  • not perfectly rigid when squeezing in the hand (but not sluggish);
  • with sprouts up to 1 cm in length (in spring).
Simplified technology of preparation. Warming up a week before planting (room temperature is suitable). Plant tubers with slightly sprouted, literally up to 1 mm, sprouts. The method is good for those who are in a hurry to plant potatoes in the insufficiently warmed soil, as the seedlings have not had time to pamper and do not break off when planted (which reduces the risk of infection).

Light germination.  The tubers are kept in diffuse light for 4 weeks before planting at a temperature of +4 to +16 ° C. This is necessary if the potato has already begun to germinate in the cellar. Reception works and as a prevention of black scab (Rhizoctonia). But the germinated tubers should be planted not earlier than the optimal time (in the Non-Black Earth this May 10-15). Otherwise, they will not like moving from a warm room to a barely thawed ground: the plants will either be weakened, or they will quickly jump out and fall under frost.

Site Preparation

Potatoes are extremely undesirable to grow in the same place. You can give him a quarter of the garden and annually shift the planting to the next part.

Producers use reliable technology, which is suitable for gardeners. Everything begins with autumn plowing (digging with lumps left), sometimes organic is brought before it. In spring, the soil is not touched, allowing it to ripen and dry out. Closer to planting, the ground is loosened to a depth of 8 cm by a motor block or chopper. Before this, mineral fertilizers are evenly applied (not exceeding the dosages specified in the instructions).

If the soil is wet or with clay, then a few days before planting form ridges: they warm up and “hold” the air. In this case, weeds will start to rise, but during planting, the tubers will mix with the ground and die. The crests after 75 or 80 cm are more convenient in work, and the plants, when airing, suffer less from Phytophthora.


If the potatoes in your area have already suffered from fungal diseases (white and black scab, Alternaria, late blight), then before planting it is recommended to treat the tubers with one of the following drugs: HOM, Maxim, Prestige, Phytosporin (according to the instructions).


In a row, potatoes are planted on average every 30 cm. Large tubers may need 35-40, and small – 20-25.

A classic rustic way.  Potatoes are planted on prepared ridges. One person makes a hole, the second puts potatoes there. The removed earth from each subsequent hole is thrown over the potato in the previous one.

On light soils, you can make combs not in advance, but when planting.  Dig a groove 4-5 cm deep, spread the tubers, and pour 7-10 cm of soil on top.

On sandy soil,  you can plant on a flat surface with a tubing depth of 4-5 cm.

On the beds. Method for excessively moistened areas. Form the ridge a width of 1.4-1.5 m, in the center make 2 lines with an interval of 30 cm. Later they will be steeped. The main principle is to raise the plants so that they do not suffer on wet soils from flooding.

What do you think?

Hannah Veteran

Written by Hannah

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