Allotment Gardening Advice Help Chat

Growing => Grow Your Own => Topic started by: Middle Eastern Gardener on June 19, 2021, 15:50

Title: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Middle Eastern Gardener on June 19, 2021, 15:50
Hello,

I was recently told that by cutting the foliage off of the potato plants that effectively stops the potatoes growing any more and they can be stored until the ground until required.  Is that the case?  My Charlotte potatoes are now as large as I want them but I don’t really have the capability to store them well through the summer.  Here in France I haven’t yet found a way of buying a smaller quantity in the first place, so I have 27 plants all ready at the same time for salad potatoes, main crop to follow.  I very much look forward to hearing your thoughts and thank you in advance.
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: jambop on June 19, 2021, 16:14
If you do not need the ground for another crop just leave them in the ground the should be fine. That way you can harvest as you require them.
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Aunty on June 19, 2021, 16:47
I presume you have no trouble with slugs.
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Middle Eastern Gardener on June 19, 2021, 17:09
If you do not need the ground for another crop just leave them in the ground the should be fine. That way you can harvest as you require them.

But I don’t really want them to grow any bigger, sorry, I didn’t mention that in the original post.  Is there a way to do this?
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Middle Eastern Gardener on June 19, 2021, 17:11
I presume you have no trouble with slugs.

Thankfully, so far, this year, no.  But, now I’ve said that….  Why, what difference would that make please?
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Aunty on June 19, 2021, 17:18
Slugs love to eat the tubers in the ground.

(https://www.allaboutslugs.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Potatoes-Cut.jpg)
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: jambop on June 19, 2021, 20:01
I grow Charlotte  nearly every year and never have many problems with slugs although I have no shortage of them. If you believe cutting them down will halt their growth then do it what have you to lose?
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Middle Eastern Gardener on June 19, 2021, 21:15
Slugs love to eat the tubers in the ground.

(https://www.allaboutslugs.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Potatoes-Cut.jpg)

Oh!  No, so far the frogs are working really hard thankfully..
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Middle Eastern Gardener on June 19, 2021, 21:17
I grow Charlotte  nearly every year and never have many problems with slugs although I have no shortage of them. If you believe cutting them down will halt their growth then do it what have you to lose?

But that is my question, does it actually do that? 
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Subversive_plot on June 20, 2021, 00:59
Slugs love to eat the tubers in the ground.

(https://www.allaboutslugs.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Potatoes-Cut.jpg)

 :ohmy: well that would be disappointing!!  >:(
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: al78 on June 20, 2021, 09:20
I grow Charlotte  nearly every year and never have many problems with slugs although I have no shortage of them. If you believe cutting them down will halt their growth then do it what have you to lose?

But that is my question, does it actually do that?

Yes. Potatoes are stored solar energy, the plant converting solar energy into chemical energy (starch) via photosynthesis. It is analagous to putting solar panels on your roof connected to battery storage. Remove the solar panels (foliage), batteries stop charging (potatoes stop growing).
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: mumofstig on June 20, 2021, 09:31
I'm not sure they would stop growing this early in the season, though.
If you think about it, when the tops are frosted, they regrow from lower down the stem, don't they?
Potatoes stored below ground, in clamps' like people used to in the 'old days', were always slugged and some rotten, if we got any wet weather.

If you really can't store them above ground, you may as well try cutting the tops off and see what happens. You've nothing to lose, have you? If you do please let us know if it works :)
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: Yorkie on June 21, 2021, 21:17
I grow Charlotte  nearly every year and never have many problems with slugs although I have no shortage of them.

I agree - I am awful at harvesting promptly, and Charlottes are pretty slug-resistant compared to many other varieties.
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: al78 on June 22, 2021, 13:29
I'm not sure they would stop growing this early in the season, though.
If you think about it, when the tops are frosted, they regrow from lower down the stem, don't they?
Potatoes stored below ground, in clamps' like people used to in the 'old days', were always slugged and some rotten, if we got any wet weather.

If you really can't store them above ground, you may as well try cutting the tops off and see what happens. You've nothing to lose, have you? If you do please let us know if it works :)

Surely it would at least halt growth for a period of time until the foliage can regrow? Isn't that what happens when the foliage gets killed by frost, it grows back but harvest time is put back a couple of weeks?
Title: Re: “Stopping” potatoes growing
Post by: mumofstig on June 22, 2021, 13:51
Quote
Surely it would at least halt growth for a period of time until the foliage can regrow? Isn't that what happens when the foliage gets killed by frost, it grows back but harvest time is put back a couple of weeks?
I'm not sure it would work now - I think that the 'growing back' may use nutrients from the tubers themselves to power the regrowth, maybe spoiling the harvest?
That's why I'm suggesting try it and see  :D