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Beginner Gardening: potato problems

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Forum: Beginner GardeningReplies: 10, Views: 144
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Friedens, PA
(Zone 5a)

August 2, 2012
5:50 AM

Post #9226854

This is the first time I've tried growing potatoes and they started great but now they look like they have some kind of disease. Planted Yukon Gold & Red Norland in grow bags with a mix of garden soil, shredded leaves, coir and container potting mix. Having a bigger problem with the red potatoes but they are both affected. Does anyone know what this is and how to prevent it for future plantings. Thanks.

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Lexington, KY
(Zone 6b)

August 3, 2012
9:26 AM

Post #9228176

When did you plant them? I planted mine in March-2 bags- and have already harvested both-weeks ago. I can't tell for sure how tall they are from these pictures, but this is how they start to look when it's time to harvest. They die at the top, turn yellow and fall over. You wait about a week, then dump out your bag and pull out all the pretty potatoes! I hope I'm right, but do a little research (Gardener's Supply is where I bought my bags & they have a video about it), and I think you might find I'm right! Let me know!
Friedens, PA
(Zone 5a)

August 3, 2012
5:52 PM

Post #9228724

Didn't get them in till May 20. Hoping your right, I'll do more research and let you know.
Saylorsburg, PA
(Zone 6a)

August 3, 2012
6:58 PM

Post #9228795

I would check and see if you have potatoes underneath. You can put your hand in under the plant and feel around or gently dig underneath if the ground isn't soft enough. I used to harvest the baby ones about now and then let the rest keep going until Sept or Oct. Yukon Gold and Red Norland are early producers so it is possible they are ready. It has also been a difficult summer in PA between the drought conditions for about 6 weeks and then all the storms. If you experienced similar weather in your parts it probably affected the plants Mine don't look so great this year either but after adding some more mulch one variety has started sending out green shoots. Another variety (fingerlings) has disappeared (basically dried up!) so I know the potatoes are ready. I think you are going to be pleasantly surprised!
Broward County, FL
(Zone 10b)

August 6, 2012
10:44 AM

Post #9231705

Keep a close eye on the leaves, if they get worse fast, it might be late blight. Was there a period of cold and wet weather lately? That got my grandpa's potatoes this year, some neighbors of him had this, too, after a week of cold temps and rain.
Kankakee, IL
(Zone 5b)

August 7, 2012
1:29 PM

Post #9233268

I agree completely with gardador!!!! I harvested Yukons 3 and 4 weeks ago and now I'm harvesting early reds. If they just look died back like it's Fall, they are just ready to dig! YUMMMMmmmmmm...
Friedens, PA
(Zone 5a)

August 12, 2012
5:21 PM

Post #9239301

Dug poratoes! Lesson learned, thanks.

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Lexington, KY
(Zone 6b)

August 14, 2012
10:02 AM

Post #9241284

Wow! That's quite a harvest! Congrats!!
Saylorsburg, PA
(Zone 6a)

August 14, 2012
11:12 AM

Post #9241336

Great Job! Wow!!


SE Houston (Hobby), TX
(Zone 9a)

August 15, 2012
8:35 AM

Post #9242225


How often did you hill up, and how deep are your grow bags? Reason I ask is because I grew the Yukons two seasons ago, and only got a handful of potatoes.

Did you have potatoes all through the grow bag vertically, or were they all on the same or close to the same level you put the seed potatoes?

I was told we can't grow potatos that make a pyramid-shaped tree underground and grow all along the stem as high up as the vine goes. Our potatoes (because of our seasons) will only produce potatoes outward and on the same level as we set the seed potatoes.


Here's what I used as my vessel (plus two 20 gallon Smartpots)


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Friedens, PA
(Zone 5a)

August 20, 2012
4:29 PM

Post #9248128

Thanks to all of you and sorry it took so long for me to reply.
My bags are 18" deep but I didn't fill them to the top. I folded the bags in half when I planted them and then when the plants grew about 8-9" tall I unfolded the bags and added the mulch mix till it covered all but about 3-4" of the plants.
The Yukons grew in a cluster at the top; I just brushed some of the mulch aside and picked them out. The Reds grew all the way to the bottom.
Planted Sweet Potatoes this way also; can't wait to see how they will do.
Your potatoes look great also!

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