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potatoes how

Alan4711Alan4711 LincolnshirePosts: 1,632
  were planting early Sarpo Kifli and International Kidney (Jersey Royals )in potatoe bags at home so, what size bags shall I use ? and how many spuds in each bag please, were also planting them in our new allotment with Sarpo Axona main crop, all with fingers crossed and all new to us so any advise at all will be good,

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  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 14,827
    Last year I planted some sarpo Una in potato bags at Mums, the week after I put some in my veg patch. We put four in a large bag, and then it got topped up each week. They were in a polytunnel, hers were ready a week before mine outside.  Outside , get as much well rotted manure or compost as you can on the planting site now.  plant the chitted potatoes in late March. I have ordered Sarpo Kifli, Una, and blue danube(really good for roasties) If you are using old compost sacks, ypu can't get as many in as bags sold for the purpose.  They are about 18 inch square and 3 ft high.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • SueAtooSueAtoo DorsetPosts: 156
    I grew potatoes (Maris Piper) for the first time last year. dug trenches, planted ready chitted potatoes and just covered them. when I saw shoots I kept "earthing up" with my lovely leaf mould. it was sooo easy to dig them up and they were so clean.
  • BenCottoBenCotto RutlandPosts: 2,050
    edited 14 January
    Last year I grew International Kidney and Anya in potato bags, the large green ones with drainage holes. I think there were about 4 potatoes to a bag. 

    I put in 6” of cheap compost from Aldi, put in the potatoes around mid April and covered them with 6” more of compost. As soon as shoots broke through the surface on went another thick covering of compost. It felt a bit odd burying the haulms but it’s what you must do. Keep going until the bag is nearly full. Start harvesting the potatoes when the foliage dies back. A merit of sacks is it’s easy to delve round in them to take out a single serving and the rest will remain in the bags in good condition for many weeks. Eventually I empty the bags, wash the remaining potatoes and store them in a brown paper sack bought for the purpose in a cool, dark larder.

    The mistake I made, only discernible at harvest time, was not watering enough though I thought I had. The yields were quite low. I was particularly disappointed with International Kidney - the first time I had grown them - as they were prone to flaking and breaking up on boiling. Insufficient watering was the cause of this, apparently. They did not taste nearly as good as shop bought Jerseys and, if I were to grow them again, I would be much more diligent with the watering.

    People always laud the taste of home grown potatoes over bought ones. In my view this is overplayed and certainly was in the case of International Kidney/Jerseys. Allow for the cost of the seed potatoes which are not cheap, the large quantities of compost, and buying potato bags and, as James Wong says, it is cheaper to get your potatoes delivered every week from Harrods Food Hall.

    This year I am growing Anya and Belle de Fontenay and have set aside plenty of home made compost and leaf mould to fill the sacks.
  • You have to get the watering right to maximise your crop. Growing in bags is an excellent way of getting early potatoes, carry them into the greenhouse if the early spring weather is a bit cold or frosty move them out again on warm days. Later in summer the soil in the middle of the bags will dry out even if you water every day. the water tends to run to the outer part of the bag so just make sure the centre of the sack is kept moist.
    When planting, you can put two or three seeds in a standard potato growing sack, any more than that will result in many very small potatoes. I usually plant 3 seeds but sometimes two depending on the variety and intended use of the potatoes. Charlotte is my present favourite as they are wonderfull to eat either small in salads or large as chips!
    Ageing the seed is vital if you want early crops and by producing nice green shoots before planting you get earlier crops, by doing this chitting for a couple of months prior to planting I can start tucking into my new crop by mid June.
  • Fill the sacks with half soil and half home made compost. I never use bought stuff its just not economic. I mix it up in a barrow and add a handfull of general fertiliser and get some really good crops.
  • BigladBiglad East LancashirePosts: 954
    I didn't spend a penny on growing potatoes last year. I'm prepared to put the tin hat on for anybody that's not keen on my methods ;) 

    Couple of old recycling tubs, home made compost and soil dug up from elsewhere in the garden, a few spuds that had started to sprout in the cupboard and Bob's your uncle :o 


  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy North London Posts: 2,983
    International Kidney have to be harvested very young to be like the Jersey royals you get in the shops. If you leave them they produce a flowery textured quite large potato. The growers in Jersey harvest them when they are very immature, they can only afford to do this because they get a premium price  for such an early crop and they have a designated food label status. 
    AB Still learning

  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 3,992
    I'd echo the point about watering when growing them in bags. It's very easy to give them too little
    “This isn't life in the fast lane, it's life in the oncoming traffic.”
    ― Terry Pratchett
  • Alan4711Alan4711 LincolnshirePosts: 1,632
    many thanks for all your help, snowed in here in Notts Alan B lucky B
  • SueAtooSueAtoo DorsetPosts: 156
    I saw a suggestion for watering the centre of pots or bags. Drill holes in plastic pipe, insert down the middle and water into that.
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