It’s easy to grow your own potatoes.
1 kilo of seed potatoes can grow 20 kilos of eating potato. We have selected 3 popular easy to grow potato varieties, these are:
A popular all-purpose potato that is hardy and easy to grow, Sebago has a regular, thick, oval shape, with bright, creamy-white skin and white flesh. It is excellent boiled and mashed, but is also good boiled for salads, dry baked or roasted, and in a pinch you can even fry it.
A pretty name for a pretty potato, the long, oval Desiree has smooth, pinkish red skin and pale yellow flesh. It is hardy and easy to grow. Its firm texture makes it a good choice for salads and roasting. Okay for mashing, but do not overcook. Do not fry.
Pontiac, with its red skin and even round shape is familiar to most Australians. Excellent for mashed potatoes and good boiled for salads (it rarely darkens after cooking). The Pontiac can also be dry baked or roasted, but do not fry.
1. Select a sunny well drained site with good soil. If you’re in a heavy soil or swampy area, consider making a raised bed 12″ deep by mixing Devotion™ Planting Mix For Wet Feet, Heavy & Clay Soils with existing soil. Potatoes like new soil, try to plant them in a new spot every year or two. Potatoes are a great way to break in new ground for growing other vegetables or crops.
2. If soil is acid, spread 1 – 2 kilos of ground limestone per square metre, together with as much well decomposed compost as you can spare.
3. Turn ground over with spade at least one full spade depth and break clods with back of spade.
4. Create furrows that are 20cm deep and 40cm apart so potatoes are ready for planting.
5. Plant fresh certified seed potatoes as they will give the highest yield with less disease, they will not infect your land with potato diseases.
6. Plant seed potatoes 25cm apart in rows and cover with 10cm of soil, leaving potatoes to grow in the bottom of a shallow furrow.
7. As potato plants grow, use a hoe to cultivate weeds in rows and as you cultivate slowly close furrows around the potatoes and hill soil around the stem of the potato plant. Do not bury too much of potato plant at any one time as this will inhibit growth.
8. After several months of growth, potato plants should have soil hilled 20cm up their stems and have furrows instead of mounds on either side. It is these hilled up areas of soil where the new potatoes will grow and swell easily.
9. As potato plants grow, top dress with blood and bone and an all-purpose fertiliser, such as Devotion™ Time Release fertiliser. Keep plants moist while growing by irrigating regularly, be particularly diligent and water heavily as potato plants flower.
10. Baby Potatoes – A gourmet delight, these can generally be harvested around Christmas if seed sewn by mid September. Dig around the base of the plant and see when they’re ready.
11. Harvesting the highest yield is obtained by digging potatoes after the vine has died to the ground, but you can dig potatoes any time from when the first bite size baby potatoes are formed.
To harvest use a garden fork, insert it deeply in the furrow beneath the hilled up area and then push fork up through the soil, lifting potatoes free of soil.
12. Once plants are dead, harvest potatoes and store in a dark cool spot. Please don’t eat seed potato or any potato with green on it.
NOTHING TASTES BETTER THAN A HOME GROWN SPUD!
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