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Originally Posted by Wannabebwana
Being Ukrainian Slavyanka insists on planting potatoes. I don't have a root cellar but have a large landscaping pot that we bury them in sand in the garage.

How do you guys deal with the potato bugs? We've been hit hard a couple times and there a no (legal) pesticides for them here in Canada.

I've found that if I search the plants I can find one leaf that they've laid eggs on with each plant (on the underside). Pick that leaf and destroy the eggs and it seems to cut them back a lot.

Heavy, coarse mulch around the plant helps keep them down, I seem to recall.


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Originally Posted by martinstrummer
I suppose you can plant and/or "transplant" potatoes. Never heard of transplanting them?

First off, potatoes don't do well in tight soil. You need a well drained, soft, sandy loam or conditioned soil.
You don't water potatoes. They'll rot in the ground.
When the plant comes up from the slip, start piling hay around the plants. The plant will stretch up to get out of the hay and form potatoes in the hay instead of underground.
Some folks use old tires to form raised beds to plant potatoes.
Taters love cooler weather.


Not water taters?

Yesterday it was 95F + with a humidity of around 10% and it sometimes doesn't rain here for 90 or may days at a time. I don't water my taters I don't get any taters.

Mine are just coming up. Plant any earlier and late frost gets them. Last frost was just a week ago. Some volunteers that came up in the beds got frost burned on top.

I've done good with Modoc variety, and early variety as we have short seasons, here in my clay volcanic soil with a lot of compost added. To keep moisture in, I plant through holes in cardboard boxes. 4" or so of composted chicken Gulag straw and lawn clippings, cardboard, more compost straw on top when they get growing.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

This bed was tomatoes, but same for the taters and cabbage etc. Keeps weeds down and moisture in.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]


From May 21 2020, just getting started.

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

And why we need short season varieties here. Same bed, June 8, snow in it with some frost burned plants:

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]

Sept 2020, partial harvest, I got close to 30lbs from one bed

[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc]


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I built up a mound of potting soil in a raised bed made of railroad ties in the back yard and planted some spropted eyes from store bought taters. Just as the green shoots broke ground, an armadillo found the loose soil and made it look like the craters of the moon. They're still growing, but it looks like several plants got uprooted. Dang it!


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Originally Posted by Valsdad
Originally Posted by Wannabebwana
Being Ukrainian Slavyanka insists on planting potatoes. I don't have a root cellar but have a large landscaping pot that we bury them in sand in the garage.

How do you guys deal with the potato bugs? We've been hit hard a couple times and there a no (legal) pesticides for them here in Canada.

I've found that if I search the plants I can find one leaf that they've laid eggs on with each plant (on the underside). Pick that leaf and destroy the eggs and it seems to cut them back a lot.
Not sure which bug you folks call "potato bugs", but have you tried dusting with diatomaceous earth? Spraying with a soap or nicotene based spray? Neem oil legal up there?


Diatomaceous earth hasn't worked, neither has soap. Neem oil and nicotene-based sprays aren't approved/available.

Slavyanka gets her mother to send her something from Ukraine that works, but who knows how long we'll be able to get that?

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Know any smokers? Make your own nicotine juice?

Good luck with it. Maybe a floating row cover put on before the plants come up to keep the adults from getting to the leaves to lay eggs?

By potato bugs, do you mean these?

https://duckduckgo.com/?t=ffsb&q=striped+potato+beetle&ia=web


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In it is contentment
In it is death and all you seek
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Boil a pouch of cheap pipe tobacco in a gallon of water and strain the solids out with cheesecloth to make your own nicotine based spray. A bag of Red Man chew would probably work, also.


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Originally Posted by Wannabebwana
Originally Posted by Valsdad
Originally Posted by Wannabebwana
Being Ukrainian Slavyanka insists on planting potatoes. I don't have a root cellar but have a large landscaping pot that we bury them in sand in the garage.

How do you guys deal with the potato bugs? We've been hit hard a couple times and there a no (legal) pesticides for them here in Canada.

I've found that if I search the plants I can find one leaf that they've laid eggs on with each plant (on the underside). Pick that leaf and destroy the eggs and it seems to cut them back a lot.
Not sure which bug you folks call "potato bugs", but have you tried dusting with diatomaceous earth? Spraying with a soap or nicotene based spray? Neem oil legal up there?


Diatomaceous earth hasn't worked, neither has soap. Neem oil and nicotene-based sprays aren't approved/available.

Slavyanka gets her mother to send her something from Ukraine that works, but who knows how long we'll be able to get that?


Wow, neem oil banned? That's hard core.



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Interesting how techniques change by region. We typically plant our in late February to mid March. Frost will sometimes knock them down, but they rebound nicely. Mine are ready to be harvested, with the exception of a few that I planted late. Ours looks like a bumper crop.

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Cash you are an Irishman at heart.
It is a green thumb that you have for growing those lovely potatoes.

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Originally Posted by simonkenton7
Cash you are an Irishman at heart.
It is a green thumb that you have for growing those lovely potatoes.

LOL...

I do figs, blueberry TREES (20 footers), kiwis and fair bit of other stuff (Peaches, Apples, Pecans, Butternuts, Chestnuts, Camelias etc. etc.)... give started plants/stuff away is kinda a hobby.

I am more of a madman than an Irishman... but thanks for the compliment.

Peach pits and other stuff come from my moonshiner friends... full circle kinda thing.


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I quit growing potatoes when they banned Thiodan. I can’t find anything else that will get rid of those damned potato bugs.

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Originally Posted by Valsdad
Originally Posted by Wannabebwana
Being Ukrainian Slavyanka insists on planting potatoes. I don't have a root cellar but have a large landscaping pot that we bury them in sand in the garage.

How do you guys deal with the potato bugs? We've been hit hard a couple times and there a no (legal) pesticides for them here in Canada.

I've found that if I search the plants I can find one leaf that they've laid eggs on with each plant (on the underside). Pick that leaf and destroy the eggs and it seems to cut them back a lot.
Not sure which bug you folks call "potato bugs", but have you tried dusting with diatomaceous earth? Spraying with a soap or nicotene based spray? Neem oil legal up there?

The "doctor of dirt" (Howard Garrett?) suggests "orange oil" as an insecticide. It's organic.
I use DE (diatomaceous earth) quite a bit. It's tough on bugs AND it's good for your soil.

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That's them, Valsdad.

Good idea on the nicotine juice, HL. I've got a buddy who goes to the US regularly and keeps me and another buddy supplied with pipe tobacco. It's outrageously expensive up here - $35-45 for 2 ounces!!!!

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I’ve had good luck with them here, but the last 4 or 5 years have been too wet.

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Originally Posted by hanco
I’ve had good luck with them here, but the last 4 or 5 years have been too wet.
Wetter than Ireland?

I heard tell they grow taters there.

Or used to, maybe that's what caused the famine, too much rain.


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In it is contentment
In it is death and all you seek
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Leonard,

I grew a lot off potatoes in Virginia. Bugs never really bothered them. 10-10-10 and Alaska fish fertilizer are my go-too. There are likely better options but, like you, I use what I have on hand.

Once they finish flowering you can start harvesting as needed. The greens will eventually look like hell. That is normal. Pull them all out as the plants start to die off.



Also +1 to this:
Originally Posted by atvalaska
Pinch the flowers off .. more power to the taters... fluffy soil = more and bigger... hill the dirt around the base will k3ep the sun off the taters..


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I grew up in central ND, sandy soil in the higher garden , sandy/river-bottom loam down over the bluff in the old river-bed, where we had one of the gardens. We always had at least a half acre of spuds, up to an acre, good production, stored in basement bins over the winter. Don't recall ever watering them, but probably did. Temps were often 90-100; didn't seem to hurt the taters any.

I do remember moving sprinklers around the garden, but not the taters specifically. Hoe-ed weeds, mounded, and dusted pestucude for bugs, yes. Often ran a herd of 20-30 white turkeys through the garden twice daily for grass-hoppers. I hated those damned birds (totally untrainable or manageable), but hoppers once removed are quite digestible.. smile. I'm hard put to decide which I hated worse- pigs or turkeys, which are on opposite ends of the animal intelligence spectrum. (I was too smart for one, too dumb for the other smile )

The birds were crazy for grass-hoppers, and it cut the feed bill considerably. We wuz "green' before it was a fad, or even identified. I wasn't born cheap- I was raised that way! smile

We had a home built row-marker with 3 or 4 teeth to drag row lines in the soil. Left-over taters from year before were cut with 2 eyes to the piece, and planted with a nifty device- commercial, but I have never seen another. It was basically a 4" tube about 30 inches long, with open top end with a handle. The bottom was a spring-loaded alligator snout, with a foot in front of it. Just walk down the row, with a sack of cuts on one's hip, dropping a seed into the planter with every step, jabbing it into the ground, pushing forward and lifting up. That dropped the seed into the hole created. Your next step came down on it and sealed it, about 3 inches deep, as you did the next seed-plant. Get the rythem right and one could plant a hellacious amount of potatoes in a day!

We fertilized with chicken manure- composted was best. Fresh stuff can get chancy if you use too much.

Taters will grow damned near anywhere- from a coal-ash pile (I dumped some left-over seed there, once, in ND.), to essentially straight peat, on my brother's land outside of Fairbanks. My soil here is about 18-24 feet of clay/silt/loamy stuff ( commonly referred to by some, when wet, as "loon shiett) over a layer of sand. Best to mix it up thouroughly using a backhoe or such, to 3 feet deep or so for good garden soil. Add a little of Ironbender's finest composted horseyshitt and I should be golden!. Next year, I'll have enough garden space, I hope, to plant a few taters. Gotta do some clearing first.

I grew a nice crop in Galena some years ago, after tilling up the scraggly lawn in front of the apartment of fairly heavy Yukon River flood-plain silt-soil.

Hell even the over-populated Irish could grow them, using Joe Biden's "planting tips for farmers". Until the blight caught up with them.

And that's how America got starving Irish up the ying-yang....... smile

Once you have potato scab, or blight, in the soil, you are so fugged. Best to rotate potato patches annually, or even tri-annually also.

Of course, YMMV for productivity, depending on soil, season, climate, and annual weather, care, etc. I read somewhere that in SA, where potatoes originated, the locals would grow several varieties at different locations/elevations, minimizing the chance of catestrophic crop failure due to seasonal weather, etc.

Last edited by las; 06/28/22.

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Try dusting some of the plants with lime.
That's what my Pap used before he got a sprayer.

Go easy, too heavy will hurt the plants.
And if you are a "Good Bug Lover" it doesn't discriminate.


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Growing your own ammo for potato guns?
https://mooncannon.com/


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[Linked Image from i.postimg.cc] Here’s how it’s done the right way and hilled up if you plant them early enough once they bloom let them go and you’ve got taters dig them around September

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