Saturday, 25 April 2015

Potatoes are in

Potatoes are in

Last years potatoes were a little bit of a disaster. They were in what is currently the Onion bed which is where the old duck pond was. Despite having been dug over with 2 feet of manure applied on top the bed got a bit water logged and we had to dig up the potatoes a couple of months early, meaning they were small and wouldn't store. The previous year (2013) they were in front of the fruit garden and were fantastic.

This year they are over the other side of the field and that bed has been expanded by 8 feet or so.

The bed was double dug and then had 2 feet of manure on it for several months, then dug over again. I dug 12 inch to 18 inch trenches for the 1st and 2nd earlies and opted for a shallow trench for the main crop which will then be earthed up. The idea of the deep trenches is so that the potatoes are just above a drainage gully depth (that runs around the bed) and the base of the bed at potato level is humped to allow water to run off. As the potatoes grow I will slowly fill in the trenches with the hope that by the time they are full grown the bed surface will be level and the manure and soil will be fully mixed because this bed still needs a lot of soil improvement as it still has large clumps of clay. The main crop potatoes are in a shallow trench which will be earthed up in the normal way because I ran out of time to double dig. This end of the bed will need double digging next year.

The 1st earlies started to go in on the 9th April 2015 followed by the 2nd earlies and by the 16th the main crop was in.

2 Feet deep manure onto the 1st and 2nd early rows and about 10 barrows of manure on the main crop.

1st Earlies are 1.5kg of Pentland Javelin
2nd Earlies are 1.5kg of  Charlotte
Main crop is  1.5kg of Sarpo Mira

1st earlies left 7 rows, 2nd right 5 rows

Main crop 2 long rows

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