GROW A ROW
Irish potatoes are a cool season vegetable that grow well
in all Florida gardens. They provide a lot of food value for
the space required to grow them. This vegetable is popular
because it may be eaten in so many different ways.
VARIETIES TO PLANT:
(Round Red) Red LaSoda, Red Pontiac, LaRouge
(Round White) Sebago, Atlantic, Superior
WHEN TO PLANT:
Step 1. SITE SELECTION
Select a sunny, open spot to grow
and produce irish potatoes. Do not
plant close to trees and shrubs whose
roots and shade will interfere with
the potato crop. Be sure to plant
near an available water supply.
Step 2. SOIL PREPARATION
Since potato tubers are formed in
the ground, prepare the soil very well.
First, remove all trash, roots, and
weeds from the site. Use a good sharp
hoe and a rake. Use a rototiller,
shovel, spade, or hoe to loosen the
soil to a depth of 6 to 8 inches.
- FloiUda CoopeAative Extension SeAvice/Ftloida A&M UniveAzity, UniveviLty o6 Florida--
Step 3. LIVING
Ask your County Agent about testing
your soil to see if lime is needed. If
required, apply one quart of dolomite
lime per 25 feet of row. Spread it on
the row area and work into the soil at
least three weeks before planting.
Step 4. FERTILIZING
For a 25 foot row of potatoes,
apply about 4 quarts of 6-6-6, 8-8-8,
or other common garden fertilizer. Use
about one quart at planting time, and
the rest later to keep the plants grow-
ing. First spread one quart over the
entire area. Mix it well with the soil.
Use chicken, cow, or compost if
desired instead of regular garden fer-
tilizer. At least a week before plant-
ing, spread and mix 10 gallons to the
Step 5. BEDDING
After applying the fertilizer, pre-
pare a planting bed for your potatoes.
Use a rake or hoe to mound up the soil
along the row. Make the bed about 6
inches high and 24 inches wide.
Step 6. SEEDING
Start potato plants by planting
a tuber called a "seed-piece". True
seeds or plants are not used.
Open a seed furrow about 4 inches
deep. Space the seed-piece 12 inches
apart in the furrow. Cover with soil,
and lightly pack.
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Step 7. POTATO SEED PIECE
A whole potato tuber or portions
of it may be used for the seed-piece.
Each seed-piece should weigh about 2
ounces (size of hen egg). Cut large
potatoes into 4 or more pieces. Make
sure there is an "eye" to sprout on
Step 8. CULTIVATION
The only plants
be potatoes, so keep
Either pull them out
or hoe them out. No
on the beds should
out the weeds.
by hand when small
plant thinning will
Step 9. INSECT & DISEASE CONTROL
Seed-piece decay is one of the worst
problems on potatoes. The best way to
avoid it is to plant healthy tubers.
Throw away any that have rotten spots on
White grubs and wire worms sometimes
eat on new potatoes in the soil. Spray
the soil with diazinon to solve this
Step 10. POTATO BUGS
An insect called the potato bug
quite often feeds on the leaves and
stems. Its real name is the Colorado
Potato Beetle. Both the adult and the
larvae feed. Dust or spray with sevin
to control the insects.
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Step 11. CHECKING GROWTH
Check your potato plants as they
grow. Look for troublesome insects
and diseases so that you can do smae-
thing before too much damage is done.
Scratch into the soil to find out
when potatoes are ready to dig. Us-
ually, they will be ready about 3
months after planting.
For more information:
If you need to know more about growing your
Extension Service office.
Step 12. HARVESTING
Dig an individual hill (plant and
its tubers) as needed, or dig the entire
row. Use a rake, or dig by hand. Be
careful not to skin the fresh tubers.
Before storing, sort out any that have
rotton spots on them and discard. Or,
trim off the rot and use quickly.
irish potatoes, contact your County
Extension Rural Development Specialist
James M. Stephens
Extension Vegetable Specialist
The Cooperative Extension Service of Florida A&M University and University
of Florida offers educational programs, materials and assistance to all people without
regard to race, color, or national origin.
AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER
COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORK IN AGRICULTURE AND HOME ECONOMICS
Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914
Cooperative Extension Service, IFAS, Florida A&M University, University of Florida
and United States Department of Agriculture, Cooperating
K. R. Tefertiller, Director
This leaflet was promulgated at a cost of $1,661.35, or $0.03 per copy, to provide
Florida home gardeners with information on the planting care of Irish potatoes.