Planting Potatoes in Straw

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brownrexx
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Planting Potatoes in Straw

#1

Post: # 26893Unread post brownrexx
Wed Jul 29, 2020 7:38 pm

My potato harvest is complete. I planted 5 lbs. each of Lehigh Yellow and Kennebec and I just harvested 21 lbs of Lehigh Yellow and 26 lbs of Kennebec.

I plant my seed potatoes in about an inch of soil and then as they grow I "hill up" using only straw. This gives me cleaner potatoes that I can dig usu=ing only my gloved hands. Before using this method I had lots of scab on my potato skins. I still get a little bit but nothing worth worrying about.

Image20200512_125338 (2) by Brownrexx, on Flickr

Image20200512_130141 by Brownrexx, on Flickr

ImageDSC00881 by Brownrexx, on Flickr

ImagePotatoes, 2020 by Brownrexx, on Flickr

ImagePotatoes 2020 by Brownrexx, on Flickr

friedgreen51
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#2

Post: # 26913Unread post friedgreen51
Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:14 pm

That is a very impressive harvest. I like that the potatoes are so clean.
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Cole_Robbie
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#3

Post: # 26915Unread post Cole_Robbie
Wed Jul 29, 2020 10:18 pm

Very nice.

I planted my potatoes this year in the spots in our former cow field where the old bales of hay were left. I don't have to dig them, they pull up without a shovel.
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Gardadore
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#4

Post: # 26920Unread post Gardadore
Wed Jul 29, 2020 11:58 pm

Wow you did a great job! I tried to plant my potatoes shallower than usual and Hill up with straw but haven’t harvested yet. Only one inch would be even better! Did you feed them anything throughout the summer or add anything to the one inch soil? I got behind on watering due to the lack of rain but at least added more straw. Definite way to go next year! Thanks for sharing this. Anything that saves more time and digging is a lifesaver for me at the moment!
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brownrexx
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#5

Post: # 26927Unread post brownrexx
Thu Jul 30, 2020 7:32 am

I tried planting them on top of some straw and using NO soil 2 years ago but they didn't grow at all and I had to rip everything apart and put a shallow layer of soil over them. It may not be exactly an inch but I cover the seed potatoes very shallowly with soil.

I do not add anything to my soil other than compost when I roto till in the Fall. My garden has excess nutrients due to getting lots of compost so I never add ferts even to the tomatoes. The roots of the potato plants go down into the soil below the seed potatoes.

The straw keeps the soil moist by limiting evaporation. Even so, the potato plants need water after they flower to make maximum potatoes and we had a dry spell and a heat wave. I was unable to water them so I got a few less potatoes than usual but still had a nice crop.
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ponyexpress
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#6

Post: # 26930Unread post ponyexpress
Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:49 am

I have been doing the straw method for a few years. What I do is put my soaker hose down, cover it with dirt, then put potatoes on top of the dirt before covering with straw. I have not harvested any potatoes yet. I wait until my vines die down.

Yes, I like how clean the potatoes are.
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ponyexpress
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#7

Post: # 26931Unread post ponyexpress
Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:50 am

The only issue I have with the straw method is that it invites voles. I setup covered traps for them.
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ponyexpress
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Re: Planting Potatoes in Straw

#8

Post: # 26932Unread post ponyexpress
Thu Jul 30, 2020 8:59 am

Here are some pictures from last year. Papa Cacho potatoes in the bed.
60594246-ED51-40BB-8EA1-F43AFDBD537F.jpeg
60594246-ED51-40BB-8EA1-F43AFDBD537F.jpeg (5.77 MiB) Viewed 139 times
Papa Cacho potatoes out of bed.
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5F7E567E-19F6-4639-9F6A-47267DD68063.jpeg (4.75 MiB) Viewed 139 times
A mix of Papa Cacho and Russian Banana
BA6C87FB-C199-42ED-AE17-6A599F1A086D.jpeg
BA6C87FB-C199-42ED-AE17-6A599F1A086D.jpeg (3.31 MiB) Viewed 139 times
Purple Peruvian
85117268-A278-424E-8243-96804099701F.jpeg
85117268-A278-424E-8243-96804099701F.jpeg (3.31 MiB) Viewed 139 times
I also grew Ama Rosa and Pinto Gold
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