Planting Potatoes

NewBoy2NewBoy2 Posts: 798

Just harvesting my Charlotte  potatoes that I  planted on May 11th

Not many and a bit small

? When can I plant again and what is a good variety

? Is it 2 or 3 times a year to get a steady supply

NewBoy2 has now been an Allotmenteer for 23 months now.

Never change Tigers in Mid Stream


  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,254

    Normally for potatoes in the ground, you plant at Easter. You can really only get one crop a year. There are earlies, , which will crop first , and maincrop which crop heavier but later. To get a good spread , harvestibg from July to October, you need different varieties. To get potatoes for christmas , you need a greenhouse. I wouldn't waste the space in mine for that.

    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,254

    If you keep on the, and look at the "what to do now" button, it will give you tips on what to plant and when.

    You could always put a good veg growing book on your  list for Santa.

     (can't mention the C word yet or I'll get detention.)

    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • Sow earlies in late March, cover from late frost.

    Sow second earlies mid to late April.

    Sow maincrop late April to mid May.

    Hope this is of help.

  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener LeicsPosts: 6,492

    The only way to have home-grown potatoes most of the year is to grow all of the types above but many more maincrop than the rest.  Store the maincrop ones in sacks in a cool dark place.  By doing this I manage to not have to buy potatoes for about 10 months on average but haven't quite made a full year.

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • Correct and right Bob.I sowed 12 drills of potatoes this year. 1 earlies Sharpes Express, 3 second earlies, British Queens and 8 main crop, Roosters and Golden Wonder. Hope to get to March with that lot.

  • NewBoy2NewBoy2 Posts: 798

    No Expert..........I am taking your advice and want to produce enough potatoes just for me for as many months as possible

    Dopey question...........What and how big is a Drill or is it just a generic word ?

    ? How many potatoes would I have to plant to get 12 months of spuds in an ideal world

    Never change Tigers in Mid Stream
  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 2,932

    All good advise above from experienced allotmenteers, not sure how my advise would translate onto an alloment but hope it does. Have tried main crop in veg beds in the back garden image

    I grow in bags mainly and try to keep some spuds back in March/Arpil to plant in May to prolong the harvest. Spuds are happy to chit for a few months if you keep them in the right conditions. I've bought spuds in January from spud fairs and started chitting right away but not planted some out till May.  

    A lot of growers rate Charlotte but I don't, never had a good crop and found they don't cook well.  Grown several different varities, there's heaps to try but this year kept some in their bags after the foilage died back. Dug up a 2nd early - wilja last week and the spuds were fine. I've still two bags of spring grown spuds to harvest and don't buy spuds from about late June through to December.

    The problem with growing Christmas spuds is when you come to harvest in December and this is why they can't be grown on an allotment, you can't dig them up, the ground is frozen. Last yr mine were put in an unheated GH and the bags froze, they were fine in February when the bags had defrosted.

    Spuds will only grow for the length of time nature intended, so spuds planted in July for Christmas -1st and 2nd earlies -  the foilage will have died back well before December and I wouldn't waste my space in the GH for Christmas spuds any more but would put them in a place which is frost free like garage or basement.

    In answer to your last Q, how many spuds do you need to plant, depends on how many spuds you eat image

  • No expertNo expert Posts: 415

    First of all it's it's very hard to keep spuds through April and May as the want to sprout. The big growers have cold stores and spray them with a retarder to stop them sprouting but they still end up soft in the bags in the shops. You can easly have spuds up to early or mid March by sowing the three different types,early second early  and maincrop.

    A drill: Sorry about that suppose that is an Irish expression. My plots are 14 foot wide by 42 foot long. This allows for 6 rows of potatoes each containing around 35 seed. 6 by 28 inch row(drill) = 168 inches or 14 foot. Got that?

    I'm not sure if 2 plots will feed all 4 of us adults till March but I think it will. This is the first year I have had 2 plots of spuds. I acquired this extra bit of garden two years ago and had 1 plot last year but lost them to blight. I'll let you know before it's time to sow.

    If you have a GH you could sow earlies in time to fill the hunger gap in April or May but I dont have one or know if you would need a lot of heat and the cost of that.

    After that it depends on how well they crop. Each variety produces at a different rate. Roosters will crop nearly twice as much as Golden Wonder in the same conditions.

  • No expertNo expert Posts: 415

    NewBoy2 it is now over 4 months since I promised to report back on the potatoe situation. we are stil munching our way through the Roosters and Golden Wonders. A few are getting soft as the weather is very mild but none have gone past using. Had fish and chips to-day Ash Wednesday. As good as the chips I made in october. asto the question how much do you need to sow to have a supply for the winter, well we made it on what we sowed. If I were sowing for myself alone I'd sow 10 to 12 first earlies the same second earlies and 75 to 80 Roosters. That should get you along way. It's nat an easy question you pose and at best it's a good guess. Hope this is of help to you.

    Happy Gaedening

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