Author Topic: Thinning potato sprouts  (Read 766 times)

goodlife

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Thinning potato sprouts
« on: February 16, 2012, 09:26:47 »
Other day I had a chat with chap who is coming back to 'grow your own scene'. As I mentioned him that my potatoes are nicely chitting away on windowsill he was baffled with my 'practise'. I explained what and why I'm doing it and then he said "Ahh..yes! I was always taught that you let sprouts grow so much that you are able snap all but one off...but you don't expose them to the light for that!"
I think he was as surprised about my way of doing it as I was of his.. ::) Have you heard of this 'oddity' of his?
Do you thin yours?

jimtheworzel

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2012, 13:21:03 »
3 sprouts per spud is said to give you larger potatos   :D

gavinjconway

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2012, 15:40:38 »
Hi Goodlife - there ais loads of different opinions on tinternet.. some say just leave them all, some say leave 4, or 3, or 5 chits,  some say dont chit any, some say chit all earlies.. 

So I dont really know what to do. I am chitting my earlies now and mains will come out in 2 weeks to start... but mainly to get them out of dormancy - but not to grow proper chits.. just to wake them up!!

When you see farmers machines planting them they dont chit them at all.. So this means that mains dont really need it.. Earlies for a quicker crop by a few weeks when spuds are pricey - YES...
Now a member of the 10 Ton club.... (over 10 ton per acre)    2013  harvested 588 Kg from 165 sq mt..      see my web blog at...  http://www.gavinconway.net

goodlife

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2012, 16:09:21 »
All the years I've grown spuds..I've chitted them..blonked them into ground all in one go no matter what 'sort' they are and they've done their thing when ready and everything has been 'rosy' and crops usually plentyfull.
I've never thinned any sprouts intentionally other than due to clumsy handling.
Last year I did grow spuds from the 'sprouts' ..separated them from the potato and potted them on and hey presto!..few perfect eating size ones and plenty of little seed potatoes.. ;D
They did the chitting trial other year in GW program to see if there is any benefits for it..and it did benefited earlies and second earlies (if my memory works right).
But to go and snap most 'sprouts' off from potato.. ::)..some must have too much time in their hands.. ::)

goodlife

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2012, 16:12:28 »
3 sprouts per spud is said to give you larger potatos   :D
I might put that in test..usually if I want bigger spuds..I just plant the spuds bit further apart.
I wonder how farmers grow the HUGE super size bakers that supermarkets rejects..I've got few sacks in past cheap from local farmer when he can't get rid of them otherwise.  ;D..those 'jackets' does take some cooking though.. ;D

Tee Gee

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2012, 16:27:13 »
Interesting thread this!

I have never given much thought to this before now but my view is as follows;

Chits eventually become haulms, tubers grow from the haulms so this would suggest the more chits the better.

But then again if there are too many tubers there is a high probability that the tubers might be small because the area they are in can not sustain the amount of tubers.

Then you have the reverse of this, remove the chits, less haulms, meaning less tubers but a higher probability that the tubers might be bigger.

Personally I think it is down to variety i.e. some varieties grow large naturally choose what you do.

So as far as I am concerned the jury will always be out on this one!

Over to you; .........

laurieuk

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2012, 16:42:25 »
We all have our own ideas for various reasons but we all get results. I knew a chap who would not plant any potato without cutting a piece out of it. He said it helped rot the seed so all the goodness went into the new growth. I chit all mine and plant them as they are unless I need to cut some to fill a row.

goodlife

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2012, 16:44:05 »
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Personally I think it is down to variety i.e. some varieties grow large naturally choose what you do.Oh definately so..and given right growing conditions they must become to those huge monsters.


I've just been looking up some old gardening books in my 'library'..and one of the books says rub all other sprouts off part 2 of the strongest ones.. ??? It doesn't say why though... ::)..and then it carries on.."ensure the shoots are not knocked off when planting"... ::) Just about right..with my handling , my spuds would be sproutless with leaving just 2.. ::)





goodlife

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2012, 17:00:27 »
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I knew a chap who would not plant any potato without cutting a piece out of it ... ;D ::)...well, it must work if he keep doing it year after year.

Just had look through more books..Hessayon says "...do not remove any of these chitted shoots"
Bob Flowerdew goes to trouble to actually explaining his advise..."to produce many small new potatoes, leave all the shoots on, but for fewer bigger tubers remove all the shoots except one or two"...."these wee shoots can be potted up in the warm and grown on to produce extra plants".. ;D

That little extra work saved me from experimenting..I shall carry on as I've always done it.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2012, 17:34:48 by goodlife »

gavinjconway

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2012, 17:21:42 »
Last year was my fist year ever growing spuds on 2 small garden shares I had..  I didnt' know anything about chitting, earlies or main crop..  I just bought some seed tubers from local B&Q and planted them as soon as I bought them - end of March I recall..   I had a good crop!!

So this year I am a bit more learned and prepared so will hopefully have a great crop.. I will grow earlies and main when I can get to digging the plot end of March planting them out in order of earlies and then lates.. but no real scientific planning for them.. just chit, dig 9", plant and cover - then ridge / pull up an extra foot of soil on top like the farmers do.. no more having to pull up soil later..
Now a member of the 10 Ton club.... (over 10 ton per acre)    2013  harvested 588 Kg from 165 sq mt..      see my web blog at...  http://www.gavinconway.net

cornykev

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2012, 18:51:15 »
I chit earlies and leave them all on, to get small new potatoes
I chit my 2nds Kestrels and take off all but 3 chits to grow bigger spuds
Mains don't need chitting but they are in the egg boxes anyway until they go in
The Italians on my site cut off the bottom of the spud, but I think it invites disease
Everyone to their own.    :-\   :D
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manicscousers

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2012, 19:21:14 »
All chitted, no thinning or cutting, all from 1 plant grown in well rotted, kestrel  ;D
we had 20 of these plants in a bed 12'x4', lots of bakers

Nigel B

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2012, 20:00:24 »
3 sprouts per spud is said to give you larger potatos   :D
I might put that in test..usually if I want bigger spuds..I just plant the spuds bit further apart.
I wonder how farmers grow the HUGE super size bakers that supermarkets rejects..I've got few sacks in past cheap from local farmer when he can't get rid of them otherwise.  ;D..those 'jackets' does take some cooking though.. ;D
Hi Goodlife,
You just jogged an old memory of huge tatties my mum used to bring home for jackets. She had an oven device, as stand that was made of either steel or aluminium and she used to spear her tatties on it and then stand the whole thing in the oven to cook. The metal the potato was 'speared' by was supposed to help conduct heat into the centre of the tatty as it cooked.
I assume it worked. We had delicious jacket spuds, and she kept it for donkey's years. :)
"Carry on therefore with your good work.  Do not rest on your spades, except for those brief periods which are every gardeners privilege."

gavinjconway

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2012, 20:23:21 »
3 sprouts per spud is said to give you larger potatos   :D
I might put that in test..usually if I want bigger spuds..I just plant the spuds bit further apart.
I wonder how farmers grow the HUGE super size bakers that supermarkets rejects..I've got few sacks in past cheap from local farmer when he can't get rid of them otherwise.  ;D..those 'jackets' does take some cooking though.. ;D
Hi Goodlife,
You just jogged an old memory of huge tatties my mum used to bring home for jackets. She had an oven device, as stand that was made of either steel or aluminium and she used to spear her tatties on it and then stand the whole thing in the oven to cook. The metal the potato was 'speared' by was supposed to help conduct heat into the centre of the tatty as it cooked.
I assume it worked. We had delicious jacket spuds, and she kept it for donkey's years. :)

Hi Nigel - I have a few skewers for my jackets... it does make them cook quicker saving the outside from burning or getting to shrivelled before the inside is cooked...

my method... wash, dry, slit a few slits to release steam, skewer, lightly oil and salt and into the oven till ready about 40 min... turning once..
Now a member of the 10 Ton club.... (over 10 ton per acre)    2013  harvested 588 Kg from 165 sq mt..      see my web blog at...  http://www.gavinconway.net

goodlife

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2012, 20:48:36 »
Oh GREAT...I never thought using skewers! Suppose it has same effect like bone in the middle of the joint..cooks much better.
I've got some BIG taties in home now..Off to wilkos tomorrow and buy some metal skewers.. ;D

gavinjconway

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2012, 11:24:27 »
Oh GREAT...I never thought using skewers! Suppose it has same effect like bone in the middle of the joint..cooks much better.
I've got some BIG taties in home now..Off to wilkos tomorrow and buy some metal skewers.. ;D


Even a bit of thick wire will do..  2 of mine are wire!!
Now a member of the 10 Ton club.... (over 10 ton per acre)    2013  harvested 588 Kg from 165 sq mt..      see my web blog at...  http://www.gavinconway.net

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Re: Thinning potato sprouts
« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2012, 11:24:27 »