How to grow potatoesJune 9, 2012
For the population of our country, growing potatoes is one of the main agricultural activities, because potatoes are our second bread. Despite the prevalence, it is not easy to grow this agricultural crop - we need to weed it, pile it up, pick up a beetle and spray the bushes from pests. In addition, the weather also makes its own adjustments - either drought or abundance of precipitation. There are several time-tested methods of growing potatoes and harvesting large crops. In this article we describe one of these methods.
Cultivation of potatoes "multi-storey" method
The essence of this method lies in the fact that potatoes are planted in the soil in a special box, and as soon as new processes appear, they are covered with a new layer of fertilized soil.
The advantages of this method:
- The ability to completely update the soil mixture;
- The possibility of sprouting potato tubers in fertilized soil at home. Moreover, this method not only shortens the growth cycle of potatoes,but also in some climatic conditions it allows to harvest two harvests a year.
- Saving land - capacity takes up little space.
- Independence from the weather. If there is a drought, it is possible to irrigate the potatoes in a box, and with heavy rainfall capacity can be covered. You can not even be afraid of frost, because in this case the container can also be closed and save the plants.
The scheme of the method is shown in the figure, where the design of the collecting tank for growing potatoes is visible. This box consists of corner posts 1, dug into the ground, walls 2, attached to the posts along the perimeter. As new sprouts appear, the capacity is filled with new layers of fertilized soil 3. At the bottom of the box is a wooden pallet 4 made from scraps of planks or bars. It is necessary to make holes in it so that the potatoes can “breathe” in a closed container.
Wall sections 2 perform a height of not less than 45-50 cm. Make them from boards or plywood. They are attached to racks, and then they fill the tank with the prepared soil mixture (it must be fertilized). The first layer of soil should be about 40-50 cm thick. Then four metal pipes with radial holes dig into this soil.These holes are made at different heights to supply water to the lower layers of the soil. They are also used besides watering also for top dressing.
After installation of vertical pipes, sprouted large tubers of potatoes with strong sprouts are planted in a box by marking, burying them by 8-10 cm. Then, along the perimeter, the wall sections are again installed according to the formwork and again 5-10 cm thick soil is covered in bushes. and then this procedure is repeated every time as all shoots appear above the ground surface. Do this until the roots and stopons of potatoes reach the upper layer of soil.
After the crop ripens, the tops should be given, and the walls of the box should be disassembled. The entire soil is harvested and taken out by the potato tubers. You can use this soil for the next planting of potatoes.
The number of potatoes grown in "multi-storey" way
In order to roughly calculate the amount of the crop, it is necessary to determine the size of the box: the width, height and length of it will be 150 cm. The height of the soil mixture with a fully filled box is 140 cm and there are 16 bushes in this box (four rows of four) .
The approximate amount of the harvest from one bush reaches 40 kg (although it is possible more, about 80 kg). So, with sixteen bushes can be harvested in 640 kg of potatoes. If you grow potatoes in the usual way, then it will take three or four weave a vegetable garden.
At the same time, the cost of manufacturing containers is minimal, since they can be found among the scrap materials, and even if they are bought, they will pay for themselves in one season. With proper care, a container made of quality materials can last for about ten years.
How to grow potatoes "multi-storey" method
- It is better to place the box with potatoes in a non-shaded place on a flat platform, which should be thoroughly cleaned of weeds. Better if this place is raised above the rest of the surface.
- As a soil, it is optimal to use sandy soils in which manure, ash or phosphate rock and vegetable flour are added. The soil composition per square meter for the first layer is approximately as follows: one bucket of rotted manure, 1 kg of plant ash (can be replaced with wood ash, but then it should be taken 2.5 times more), 0.08 liters of superphosphate.For the remaining layers per square meter of manure, 0.04 superphosphate and 0.8 kg of plant ash are added.
- If the soil in the country is loamy, then it is necessary to add a little sawdust dipped in urea into the soil for growing potatoes.
- Potatoes for sowing should be free of any signs of disease or mechanical damage. The optimum weight of tubers is 150-200 grams.
- It is better to germinate tubers 50 days before planting. Before that, they must be treated with formalin (0.5% solution) and irradiated for 45 minutes with a bactericidal lamp. Potatoes should be germinated at a temperature of 12-15 degrees above zero and at a humidity of 80-85%.
- Sprouted tubers ten days before planting are placed in boxes with a soil mixture and are also poured from above with 10–15 cm moist soil. Before laying, they should be inspected for damage. Each tuber must have at least five processes about 3.5 cm long.
- Before planting the potatoes, the walls of the growing tank are installed (at least 45 cm high) and a layer of moist, prepared soil is laid. The temperature of the earth should be about seven degrees - this is the period of the end of April-beginning of May.
- On the surface of the soil make markup and dig shallow holes (80-10 cm deep).In the box of the indicated sizes 16 bushes of potatoes are placed (four bushes in four rows).
- Prepared tubers are placed into the formed wells, covered with earth with a layer thickness of 5-10 cm.
- If frosts set in, the container with potatoes is covered with plastic wrap, cardboard or sacking. You can make a fire next to it and send warm smoke under the container tray.
- When the soil in the box reaches the level of the top row, the bushes are allowed to develop, and they are cared for, like ordinary potatoes. In any case, sprout backfilling should be stopped after the onset of mid-July.
- When the potatoes bloom, it must be treated with special compounds against phytophthora, processing should be repeated after ten days.
- Five days before harvesting, the tops are removed. Usually, harvesting is carried out not earlier than September 25, and if the weather is good, then potatoes can be harvested in early October.