Harvest potatoes younger or mature.
Mature, full-size potatoes are referred to as maincrop potatoes. Maincrop potatoes are sometimes cured and saved for later use. Maincrop potatoes are prepared for harvest when a lot of the high foliage has withered
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Small, spherical, immature potatoes are sometimes referred to as “new potatoes.” New potatoes are normally eaten pores and skin and all. New or early potatoes will be harvested for desk use at any time.
When to Harvest Potatoes
- Harvest massive, mature, maincrop potatoes about 15 weeks after planting when the foliage begins to die again.
- Harvest new potatoes when vegetation start to flower and for one more 2 to three weeks, beginning about 60 to 70 days after planting.
- It’s greatest to reap potatoes on a heat, dry day after a number of days of no rain or a cloudy day will do.
- Some potato varieties bloom late or don’t bloom. If you don’t see flowers 65 to 75 days after planting, verify close to the bottom of the plant for creating tubers. Potato tubers type on underground stems referred to as stolons. Potato stolons are usually 12 to 18 inches lengthy; so creating tubers can be inside that circumference of the plant.
How you can Harvest New Potatoes
- To reap new potatoes gently elevate the plant together with your arms or a backyard trowel or hand multi-pronged backyard fork. As you elevate the plant, the encompassing soil and mulch will fall away.
- Take as many new potatoes as you want then set the plant again in place and agency the soil in order that the plant and remaining tubers can develop on. (Don’t go away the plant out of the soil for lengthy; the solar can harm uncovered roots and tubers.)
- Instead, you possibly can elevate a complete plant for harvest and go away the neighboring vegetation undisturbed. The potatoes you allow within the floor will develop to turn into your major crop—your mature tuber crop, and the plant will produce new potatoes as nicely.
- If the plant is rising in hills of very free soil, mulch or straw, you possibly can merely ease your hand into the tuber zone and take away new potatoes.
How you can Harvest Major Crop Potatoes
- Mature or maincrop potatoes can be prepared for harvest 2 to three weeks after vegetation flip yellow and die again—about 100 to 110 days after planting.
- Vines will both die again naturally or, to spur harvest, you possibly can break off the stems at floor degree to cease development.
- Between the time the plant dies again and harvest, don’t water potato vegetation. A dry interval will permit skins to “set” or harden which is vital for lengthy storage.
- Harvest mature potatoes utilizing a spading fork. Work from the sting of the planting row or mattress inwards.
- Insert your fork 10 to 18 inches away from the plant stem. Loosen and switch the soil fastidiously so the potatoes you elevate usually are not broken.
- A lot of the crop can be on the identical degree within the high 4 to six inches of the soil. If you know the way deep the tubers are rising, you should use a backyard spade to elevate your entire hill.
- If the potato plant doesn’t die again because the tubers mature, lower the plant off at soil degree two weeks earlier than you wish to harvest the tubers.
- It’s best to dig potatoes when the soil is dry. If the climate has been wet, wait a number of days till the soil dries to start your harvest.
Drying and Curing Potatoes
- Let harvested potatoes sit within the backyard for an hour or so to dry. Because the tubers and soil dry, the soil will drop away from the tubers. If the soil doesn’t drop away, use a mushy brush to take away soil from the tubers. Don’t wash simply harvested potatoes; washing potatoes will shorten their storage life.
- Newly harvested potatoes wouldn’t have robust pores and skin so deal with them fastidiously to keep away from bruising which might result in rot.
- Set the tubers on a display screen or lattice the place they’ll dry for an hour. When you go away them longer, set them in a darkish, dry place the place it’s a bit humid.
- Maincrop potatoes that you just wish to retailer needs to be allowed to “treatment” for one to 2 weeks after harvest. Curing will permit cuts, nicks, and bruises to heal.
- Potatoes with deep cuts or bruises are greatest used straight away and never saved.
How you can Retailer Potatoes
- New potatoes can be most flavorful if eaten virtually instantly after digging.
- Retailer major crop potatoes in a darkish, dry place for every week or two at 55° to 65° F with excessive humidity of 85 to 85 %.
- After two weeks, potatoes that you just wish to retailer longer for winter use needs to be moved to a a lot cooler- 35° to 40°F—darkish room, basement, or root cellar with average humidity and air flow.
- For lengthy storing—so long as eight months, select potatoes which can be agency with no mushy spots. Temperatures larger than 40°F will trigger tubers to sprout and shrivel.
- Verify saved potatoes usually; if sprouts start to type, knock the sprouts off together with your arms.
- Don’t refrigerate potatoes; the air in a fridge is just too dry for potatoes and may trigger them to shrivel. Don’t retailer potatoes with apples; picked apples expel ethylene fuel which can trigger potatoes to spoil.
Frequent Potato Storage Issues
- Some potatoes can turn into “candy” when saved. Potatoes in storage could convert starch to sugar which is used within the tuber “respiration” course of. The respiration strategy of potatoes saved in a cool place slows in order that the starch transformed to sugar isn’t utilized in full; the unused sugar will give the potatoes a candy style when cooked. To keep away from a candy style, take the potatoes out of storage a number of days upfront of cooking in order that the additional sugar can revert to starch—a course of referred to as “reconditioning.”
- The skins of potatoes uncovered to gentle can flip inexperienced. Greening is attributable to a poisonous alkaloid referred to as solanine. Inexperienced potatoes style bitter. Don’t eat inexperienced potatoes; solanine may cause sickness. If a potato pores and skin is inexperienced, peel or lower away the inexperienced earlier than cooking.
- Be suggested that the leaves of potato vegetation are toxic to people and animals.
Extra suggestions: How you can Develop Potatoes.