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Earthing up potatoes


 
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Seedling
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 28 Feb 2011
Posts: 31
Location: Cork

PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:38 pm    Post subject: Earthing up potatoes Reply with quote

Hi All

I have a beginners question that I have asked a few people, all of which have given me a different answer. I would like to know when and how to earth up potatoes and do you do it for all varieties ie early and maincrop varieties?

I am growing Duke of York, Maris Piper and King Edward.

Do I mound all 3 of these varieties?
When earthing up, do you cover the entire plant or do you keeping drawing soil up to the base of the leaves?

The spuds were all sown on the 19th of March (on flat ground and not in mounds or drills) and the earlies are now about 9 inches tall.

Many thanks

Conor
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Sive
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Joined: 18 Apr 2008
Posts: 1731
Location: Co.Wexford

PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2011 3:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As far as I know, all potatoes must be regularly earthed up as the stalks grow taller. This protects the tubers from the light which would make them green....and poisonous.
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michael brenock
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2011 5:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes Sive is correct all varieties are earthed up and this may be done in one or more operations. The first is usually done when earlies are breaking through the ground and the earthing up gives them protection from frost. The second or later earthing is done to prevent the developing tubers becoming green if exposed to the sunlight. The tubers always develop above the sown or planted seed.
michael brenock horticultural advisor (retired)
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Seedling
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 28 Feb 2011
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Location: Cork

PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the information. I'll starting earthing them all up. Do I cover the plants entirely or just up to the base of the leaves? Last year I earthed up the spuds twice but only drew the soil up to cover the stalks and not the leaves.

Many thanks

Conor
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newspade
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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 3:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

like seedling i'm ready to start earthing up , but not sure how far to draw up the soil , any advice would be appreciated . thanks
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Sive
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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Up to the underside of the leaves I think.
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michael brenock
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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 10:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

the lower leaves can be covered especially if they are turning a pale green or yellow. Do not at this stage cover up the entire stalk as this would stop the growth. Covering up the entire stalk is alright in mid to end of April but not now.
michael brenock horticultural advisor (retired)

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