I want to tell the readers of the magazine about how I plant potatoes. I got to this technique as a result of many years of searching. I just want to warn you: I am not quite a typical gardener - I am not chasing big harvests. I'm more interested in new varieties of potatoes. I would like to check how he will feel in the not very favorable conditions of the Karelian Isthmus and, of course, try his taste. At the same time, I try to use different ways to increase its yield: how to get several bushes from two or three potatoes.
Firstly, I haven't been planting potatoes in one place for more than two or three years... I've been digging the plot since autumn, with a pitchfork, of course. And I've been digging the entire plot for thirty years only with a pitchfork. I sow it with winter rye, and in the spring I slightly loosen it and make shallow rows. It turns out a wavy area. The distance between the rows is about 70 cm. I compact the rows (according to Dutch technology), add ash, manure, a little superphosphate and lay out the potato tubers.
I write down the number of tubers and the variety in each row in a journal. And then I sprinkle the tubers with a small rake, but so that they are slightly covered. I sprinkle it with a small layer of earth because it and the sides of the rows warm up well. Therefore, sprouts appear quickly. And at night, when it gets colder, the earth of the side rows gives off heat, and the borings do not freeze at night. Since the potato field looks wavy, it is very convenient to cover it with a covering material if necessary. In addition, such rows are well and easily spud.
I want to note that I sprinkle potatoes with the same rake, i.e. I also loosen the site at the same time.
I try to buy varietal potatoes for planting. Then I soak it for half an hour in a solution of potassium permanganate and put it in the sun for landscaping and the appearance of sprouts, but not long, but plump green ones. This is if a new variety is bought in the spring.
In the fall, I choose clean, even potatoes, again I wash them in potassium permanganate, green and put them in boxes for the winter, in which I must put the garlic and ate branches, and leave them in the basement at the dacha. In the spring I take it out and put it in the light until the sprouts appear.
I've tried pretty many different varieties... I liked the varieties Charodey, Lugovskoy, Petersburg, Skala, Skazka, Adretta in terms of yield, resistance to late blight in our conditions. And in terms of taste, they suit me.
I can share the experience of breeding a new potato variety. Let's say you can buy three or four potatoes. Then hold them as usual in a solution of potassium permanganate, dry and do the following: put two pieces in a dark place, and leave two in the light. After three to four weeks, those potatoes that have been in the dark will have long shoots. Look closely at them along the length and you will see green dots against the background of the white shoot.
Cut the shoots between these green dots and plant them in the ground. Water. After a while, you will have green shoots, i.e. get clean seedlings. Well, when the soil is ready in the country, plant these seedlings, and in the fall you will already get a lot of potatoes of a new variety.
On potatoes, which will lie in the light, green leaves will appear on the eyes with white tentacles - roots. Carefully unscrew these sprouts and plant them in the ground. Get seedlings again, and then plant them in the ground on the site. So you will have your seed potatoes.
And the potatoes themselves, from which you took the shoots, cut in the middle of the tuber and plant. Lateral and lower eyes and some amputated ones will give new shoots.
So, dear gardeners, gardeners, experiment! It is very interesting and useful!
V. Chernysheva, gardener, pos. Roshchino
Sometimes the gardener is puzzled by a seemingly insoluble question, such as the rapid reproduction of the potato variety he likes. Using the method of growing potatoes by sprouting, owners of household plots in a short time can provide themselves with the necessary planting material in the coming season.
Reproduction by sprouts allows you to get the maximum amount of planting material even from one tuber. In addition, everyone knows that any kind of potato degenerates over time. Reproduction of potatoes by sprouts will help to save the variety from degeneration; this method of growing significantly rejuvenates any variety.
Work on the propagation of planting material by sprouts should begin a month and a half before the usual dates for planting potatoes in open ground, adopted in the region.
First, potato tubers are placed in shallow boxes, sprinkled with humus, sprinkled with water and placed in a bright place, best of all on the windowsills.
Periodically, the planting material is lightly watered and after 3 weeks they begin to closely engage in potato seedlings.
Carefully remove the potato tubers and break out the strong sprouts that have appeared. Having reached only 5-6 cm in height, the sprouts already have rosettes of green leaves and a white beard of roots.
The resulting potato seedlings are planted in a suitable container, like ordinary tomato seedlings, and the tubers are again sprinkled with humus to obtain the next batch of sprouts.
After 2 weeks, the green-bearded sprouts from the tubers are again broken out and also planted in cups or boxes for growing.
The potato tubers are cut into walnut-sized pieces after the second sprouting, making sure that at least one eye remains in each part of the tuber. The chopped tubers are again laid out in the boxes, sprinkled, watered and left to grow on the windowsill.
A week later, the next batch of planting material develops from these eyes. But breaks are no longer carried out, and when the time comes for planting in open ground, they carefully planted parts of the tubers along with sprouts in the holes, as in the usual planting of potatoes.
Likewise, the rest, obtained in an unusual way, potato seedlings are planted in open ground, in holes or grooves, sprinkled with humus, lightly watered and covered with loose earth, leaving only 2-3 cm tops above the bed.
Some gardeners pick off the green leaves that have grown on the stem buried in the ground, although this does not have any effect for the further development of the potato bush, and you can simply ignore the available leaves.
The subsequent care of potato plantings from sprouts depends on the weather and the condition of the plants. Watered seedlings 1-2 times before rooting. Top dressing, weeding and hilling are carried out in the same way as in conventional plantings.
This technology of growing potatoes by sprouts accelerates the reproduction of any variety, as it allows you to get from one large tuber to 18-20 planting bushes and more, each of which, in turn, will produce 6-8 large potatoes by autumn.
Almost every season, many are faced with the question - what kind of potato to plant. When choosing, one should be guided by the various indicators of a given culture. But at the same time, do not forget that varieties with multi-colored pulp can differ in different useful properties.
First, let's look at what exactly determines the color of a potato. Anthocyanins give the purple and blue color of the peel and pulp. These substances include epicatechin and catechin. Their content in the pulp of colored varieties ranges from 60 to 80 mg per 100 g. The same amount of these substances is present in broccoli, spinach and Brussels sprouts. If we compare colored potatoes with ordinary ones (having yellow or white flesh), then these substances in purple and blue varieties are about 2 times more.
Red flesh potatoes contain a thermally stable anthocyanin, which includes p-coumaric acid and pelargodin. These varieties can be used as a natural food coloring. The scarlet and orange color of the pulp is determined by the content of carotenoids in it.
In terms of health benefits, it should be noted that purple, red and blue colored potatoes have antioxidant properties. This is provided by the pigments contained in their pulp. Also in varieties with purple and blue pulp, useful glycosides are present, among which petundin, malvidin, delphinidin and pionidin can be distinguished.
Studies have been conducted, during which it was found that regular consumption of potatoes, which have purple and red color, helps to reduce the risk of developing certain cancers. Also, a positive effect on the walls of blood vessels (their strengthening), a decrease in the likelihood of developing atherosclerosis was noted. Improvement of eyesight with frequent consumption of these varieties of potatoes has also been proven.
In the fall, prepare a fertile loose piece of land (for one bush - 2.5 square meters), add 2 buckets of manure to it, dig up. Then, in the spring, dig up the area again and loosen it up. The prepared tuber should be vernalized in the light at a temperature of 12-15 degrees. After about 7-10 days, it produces strong, dark green shoots. Next, plant the sprouted tuber in the center of the prepared area. Loosen the soil with a rake every 3-4 days. When the stems reach a height of 15 cm, bend them to the ground and sprinkle. This is done 3-4 times until a hill with a height of 50-60 cm is formed. The bush begins to grow intensively, so feed it with slurry (1: 6), and then water it with clean water. Harvest at the end of September - 20 kg of seed tubers!
If this method seems too laborious, then you can do it differently. Sprout the seed tuber as described above. Then carefully separate the sprouts and plant them in a box of fertile soil. After 4-5 days, feed the "seedlings" with any complex fertilizer for vegetables. When the sprouts reach 10 cm in height, plant them on the prepared bed. Planting care is the same as in the first method, i.e. periodically loosen the ground, water and feed. Seed harvesting is also carried out in September.
For seeds, you need to select tubers only from the healthiest and most productive bushes. A good harvest of potatoes is given by tubers measuring 10 centimeters.
Seeds must be greened before storage. Such tubers are better stored and give a greater yield, but they cannot be eaten - they are poisonous!
The potato is an air-loving plant that loves loose, air-permeable soil. Therefore, for the normal development of potatoes and obtaining the maximum yield, it is recommended to huddle this crop at least 3 times per season. Hilling promotes greenery growth, root formation and additional stems.
Top dressing of potatoes is carried out only on insufficiently fertile and poorly fertilized soils by applying organic fertilizers, primarily manure. This fertilizer contains all the nutrients necessary for a potato plant and makes it possible to obtain an environmentally friendly harvest. With the regular use of organic fertilizers, the structure of the soil improves, the penetration of water and air into its pores is facilitated, and warming up is accelerated.
The most harmful plants for potatoes are bindweed and dandelion. The bindweed is wrapped around the tops, preventing the plant from developing normally. And because of the dandelion, the potato grows small. Therefore, it is necessary to weed thoroughly, removing all weeds, especially at the beginning of growth.
If an invasion of the Colorado potato beetle is observed, then it is necessary to treat the bushes with a comprehensive pest control (in large areas), in small areas you can collect beetles and their larvae by hand.
At the end of August or at the beginning of September, they start harvesting. The potatoes are dug up, dried and stored in the cellar.
Many scientific papers have been written about how to grow potatoes. Indeed, without this vegetable, the planet would really have nothing to eat, because today it is this culture from the nightshade family that has become one of the main around the world. Breeders around the world work on potato growing methods and improve them every year to increase yields when harvesting potatoes. It will be interesting for both beginners and experienced gardeners to learn about the most progressive methods and all the secrets of growing potatoes.