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Growing potatoes in a potato barrel


 
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Yorky
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2008 6:59 pm    Post subject: Growing potatoes in a potato barrel Reply with quote

Has anyone used one of these Potato barrel
If so, would you recommend one?
I am keen to plant some seed potatoes in one of these ASAP as ideally I would like two crops -
would it be too early to plant 'first earlies' now in one of these? Can anyone recommend a 'first early' that would suit the climate of North East Ireland?

Thanks in advance.
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BlackBird
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Would not be a great fan of these, as I feel keeping enough water available for the swelling of the potatoes would be a problem. No such problem when the spuds are sown in drills or even raised beds with minimal irrigation.
The "first early" variety of potatoes I had great success with was Home Guards
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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2008 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that's ain't cheap either.
woodies are currently doing a pack of three heavy duty bags for growing spuds in; each one is a few cubic foot in size, i'd say.
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Yorky
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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2008 4:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've planted some seed potatoes in two potato barrels and the idea is to add 6" layers of compost so only the tips of the shoots are showing . With mine, they are growing at different rates so I have actually covered the lower tips and left just the tallest tip exposed.

Will the other ones continue to grow through the compost? I can't see any way around this.
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BlackBird
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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2008 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yorky wrote:


Will the other ones continue to grow through the compost?


Yes, just as they have done initially.

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sevenstar
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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2008 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm new to growing fruit & veg (2nd year) and have just tried spuds for the first time. I don't have much room so I sowed them the bags I got in Woodies, they were slow to start but now they are flying. Just took them out of the greenhouse (did I do right?) and earthed them up. I water them almost daily and am glad I live in Ireland where there is no hosepipe ban like England, Or is There? Looking forward to some contact on line with other veg heads and reading all your tips and suggestions. Laughing
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Sb
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PostPosted: Sun May 04, 2008 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

sevenstar wrote:
I water them almost daily and am glad I live in Ireland where there is no hosepipe ban like England, Or is There?


No bans as far as I know. But sure thats what water butts are made for, allowing us to store the rainwater which is better for our vegetables. Watering your potatoes in the sacks regularly is vital as they tend to produce small crops if water neglected. Good luck with them sevenstar.
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sevenstar
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PostPosted: Mon May 12, 2008 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Sb. Will keep you up to date on how I get on. Plan to harvest as soon as they are ready and replant for later in the year. Any suggeations?
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Yorky
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 17, 2008 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have just harvested my first ever crop of 'Orla first earlies' from my potato barrel. The yield was very small unfortunately- only 2.7kg.I chitted the seed potatoes for two weeks and planted them on 24th March. I added layers of compost as the foliage grew through the compost until the container was full. The compost I used was a Homebase organic one and I watered them regularly and fed with a liquid fertiliser once a week.

Does anyone know why the yield might have been so small? Could the compost have been to blame?

Also can the compost be used again next year or will it be 'spent' now? If so, is it possible to add old compost to a compost bin?

Any help would be appreciated.
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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

i had small yields too - same technique, but no potatoes grew above the original soil level, the plants didn't produce roots up the stems.
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BlackBird
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 18, 2008 11:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

BlackBird wrote:
Would not be a great fan of these, as I feel keeping enough water available for the swelling of the potatoes would be a problem. No such problem when the spuds are sown in drills or even raised beds with minimal irrigation.


A quote from my second post on this thread back in Feburary.

I think people are trying to reinvent the wheel with these potato barrels as it it hard to beat growing the way nature intended. A well grown 3ft long drill of Orla has the possibility to yield 5kg of potatoes. What I will say is the bigger the barrel or bag, the bigger the yield.

Do you mind me asking how much the potato barrel and compost cost to produce 2.7kg of potatoes Yorky. Inishindie had a post about growing them in bags which just recycled old manure bags as far as I could see http://www.gardenplansireland.com/forum/viewtopic.php?p=5544#5544

The compost cannot be used for growing potatoes next year thats for sure due to the fact you should be rotating the crops in your soil to prevent the build up of pests and diseases. I suggest you spread work it into your shrub beds for what it is worth.

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Jacqcat
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 28, 2008 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We just harvested one of our potato "sacks". The variety is sarpo mira (sp?) and the yield was about 5kg. We didn't do anything different from you, except we only fertilised with our own vermicompost/liquid and nothing else.

Perhaps it's the variety?

Yorky wrote:
I have just harvested my first ever crop of 'Orla first earlies' from my potato barrel. The yield was very small unfortunately- only 2.7kg.

...

Any help would be appreciated.
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Blowin
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 30, 2008 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it's any help (and I'm the novice's novice) I planted Epicure first earlies this year. It was my first attempt at growing spuds and this was what was on the shelf in the garden centre.

I'm lucky to have access to 'used' commercial growbags and planted the Epicures quite shallowly in stoney ground with bags on top to earth them up.

They cropped very well but, being virgin field that had never been cultivated before, it had all the slugs, wireworms etc in creation in it. I lost at least 75% of them as a result but, if you want a seed that you can put in in your artificial environment of the barrell, this is one that worked for me.

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Organicgrowingpains
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 01, 2008 11:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, just read all the posts on growing potatoes in a barrel.We have grown carrots in barrels for the last 2 years.This year we are getting great returns from them. I read somewhere that the carrot fly cannot fly too high and barrels or containers were recommended. My grandchildren thought they were great! if anyone wants to visit the blog www.organicgrowingpains.blogspot.com there are photos etc. Anything grown in containers,bags etc needs constant watering and feeding.
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