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Author Topic: Tomato & potato advice need please!  (Read 5651 times)

Sharondp

  • Joined Jun 2009
Tomato & potato advice need please!
« on: May 26, 2010, 12:57:53 pm »
Potatoes are all sprouting nicely - lots of foliage and the first signs of flowers :)

Now I need to start 'earthing up' - I understand the principle but have never seen this done , so do I put the earth under the foliage or on top of it, i.e. cover the foliage up?

Tomatoes coming along nicely too, but I've heard it's a good idea to 'pinch out the side shoots' - I'm assuming this isn't every shoot coming out of the main stem! Can someone enlighten me?

Thanks from a novice!!

Hermit

  • Joined Feb 2010
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2010, 02:56:47 pm »
I dont earth potatoes up as I bury them deep and never had any problem with greening,but I do believe you cover the leaves up, they stiil grow on through.
As for tomatoes you pick out the little shoots that grow from the top side of the joint where the main leaf shoot meets the stem. When the fruit is growing well and ripening you defoliate the lower part of the plant which IS when you take the main lower leaf shoots off, to allow air and light around the fruit(they are usually dieing off  at that stage anyway.Do not take them off before then as they are the food factory of the plant.

plumseverywhere

  • Joined Apr 2013
  • Worcestershire
    • Its Baaath Time
    • Facebook
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2010, 03:48:49 pm »
I'm glad you've posted this question Sharon - I was just googling the same (about potatoes). I've earthed mine up so that the top leaves are just showing.
Smallholding in Worcestershire, making goats milk soap for www.itsbaaathtime.com and mum to 4 girls,  goats, sheep, chickens, dog, cat and garden snails...

Wizard

  • Joined Nov 2009
  • North East Lincolnshire
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2010, 05:10:38 pm »
If you see the big farmers doing it they prepare the field and plant the tubers the modern planters have a splitter on the planter.This is a ridger at the front makes a ridge to drop the tuber in a measured amount of fertilizer is placed in the groove with the potato and then the splitter splits the ridge back cover over the tuber when the leaves start to appear the ridger goes back and hills the row up covering the leaves and all the leaves come through again hopefully after the frosts have gone.Be carefull hilling them up if the stalks and leaves are a foot high they are very tender and brittle and break very easily.Take care if you break them off the plant will die ??? :farmer:
Don't do today what can be put off until tomorrow because today will be yesterday tomorrow

Sharondp

  • Joined Jun 2009
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2010, 09:43:37 pm »
Thanks everyone - just wondering if they do a mini version of that machine!

Gues what I'm doing tomorrow then! At least the soil will be softer after this rain!

valr

  • Joined Apr 2010
  • Brightons nr Falkirk
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2010, 10:00:26 pm »
Sharon it depends what type of tomatoes you have - there are some you are not supposed to pinch out!
It should say on the seed packet - or ask Mr Google!
Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings.. ;)

Sharondp

  • Joined Jun 2009
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2010, 10:17:15 pm »
Oooh thanks Val - most of mine are Italian, Roma, San MArzano, Cuor di bue, with a few money maker, garden pearl and gardener's delight for good measure! I still have the seed packets so I'll have a look!

Cheers my dear!  :farmer:

Wizard

  • Joined Nov 2009
  • North East Lincolnshire
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2010, 08:02:49 am »
Mornin sharondp.Go to Ebay and write Ja-lo push hoe On the page that appears in Jeeves click and under the red Spelling suggestion click the first one General talk and discussion on Ja-lo there is a very good picture of one the bit that looks like 2 ploughs fixed back to back is the bit you need  and a single wheel Ja-lo frame You can imagine what it does.There are several power ones but I found they are a bit fierce for hilling up grand for planting.Have a look at the Mantis site.The Head Gardener has a Mantis for cultivating the cold frames and greenhouse soils Saves ever such a lot of work I was surprised how good it is.Have a look. :D :farmer: :wave:
Don't do today what can be put off until tomorrow because today will be yesterday tomorrow

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2010, 11:26:47 am »
For earthing up tatties, I first run the Mantis along between the rows to loosen the soil, but that stage is optional.  Then, using a good strong hoe (or you could use a rake if the soil is soft and not too many weeds), I work my way along the rows, pulling soil up towards the stems, then work my way back down the other side.  This gives the ridge effect with the leaves poking out of the top.  I do this two or three times as the stems get taller until I can't get either the Mantis or me between the rows. After the last earthing up I scatter grass clippings over any bare soil I can see, not too deep or it goes wet and slimey but enough to provide a bit of extra nutrition and cover the soil.
I agree that the Mantis is great - I use it a lot to work compost and manure into the rows and planting holes before planting/sowing. We also have a tractor mounted rotavator for large scale work and a biggish walk-behind for the major spring work, but I am amazed at how thorough the little Mantis is and how deep it can turn the soil. We are gradually trying to work towards some of our plot being no-dig, or at least no-rotavate to try to protect soil structure, but at the moment the weeds still need major work every year.  We've been trying to subdue this plot for 15 years  ::)
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Wizard

  • Joined Nov 2009
  • North East Lincolnshire
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2010, 01:09:45 pm »
Hello Fleecewife Admit it it the Mantis was the biggest heap of junk you ever clapped eyes on.Until you used it what a surprise its one of the best little power tools to do a big job there is Any one interest look on their web site the Little plough is very worth while No it wont plough 16" furrows nor will a Grey Fergie and its a lot bigger :D :farmer: :wave:
Don't do today what can be put off until tomorrow because today will be yesterday tomorrow

Sharondp

  • Joined Jun 2009
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2010, 04:14:54 pm »
I want one!  :o ;D

Padge

  • Joined Aug 2009
    • Facebook
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2010, 06:58:32 pm »
 ;D we're the same fleecewife mantis tiller and plough  and bigger walk behind........earth up the same way

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2010, 12:53:31 am »
<<Hello Fleecewife Admit it  the Mantis was the biggest heap of junk you ever clapped eyes on.Until you used it what a surprise its one of the best little power tools to do a big job there is>>

Well, the smallest really  :) Yes, I was very scornful about them before I had one.  We got a 2 stroke first, but one of our sons let it run out of fuel and it seized - in the small print it said that would happen.  How fit for purpose is that?  Anyway, they took it back under the 1 yr warranty and we bought ourselves a 4 stroke which has been trouble free and absolutely great.  I notice they don't do the 2 stroke any more  :D

Frost forecast here tonight, and it's already down to 2 degrees.  I spent a frantic hour this evening finishing earthing up the tatties after seeing the forecast but some leaves are sticking out the top so I hope they don't get caught.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Wizard

  • Joined Nov 2009
  • North East Lincolnshire
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2010, 06:45:36 am »
Hello Fleecewife Gimme a bit of poetic licence I alust admit when I don't know what I'm on about .So I probably live some 200 miles South of you and things will be in a lot more advanced growth state. I honestly have some Lady Crystl tatties ready for Sunday Lunch I grow all my stuff in boxes and pots etc; as I have no garden.I do have a small 6X8 Greenhouse trapped between the garage and the neighbours fence which I find very useful and I grow some tomato's in later.Its great for getting things growing.I was in the walled garden in the week and there is a row there that is ready.So I am really pleased with myself keeping up with the Head Gardener (Shh He told me how to do it)I have never had New potatoes from my own grown ready for 1st of June before.One of the gardeners was using the Mantis in the vinery he was going to set carrots
The whole of the garden looks really well this year So we are all hoping we don't get caught with a late frost. :D :farmer: :wave:
Don't do today what can be put off until tomorrow because today will be yesterday tomorrow

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Tomato & potato advice need please!
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2010, 12:23:18 am »
Hi Wizard  Hope you didn't get a frost.  There was a light one here but the tatties sailed through it unharmed so it was worth the frantic earthing up  :)
I have lived in a large variety of places around Britain and every one has it's good and bad points for growing.  When I was a student I had to resort to pots on my windowsill  ::)  We have been in places with no garden so grown in containers like you, we have been in places where we had to dig up the front garden for our veggies - great to annoy the neighbours like that  ;D One garden was solid rock with no soil so for years we had a couple of allotments - there was a lovely lady murdered there which was horrible and also meant I couldn't work after everyone else had finished in case he came back.  I got a German Shepherd which solved that one. In Anglesey huge sea mists would suddenly come rolling in and soak everything and the wind made runner beans go all scabby and curled.  Now we have a smallholding with no space problems and wonderful soil but a very short growing season, howling winds and loads of snow every year - wonderful views though.  Still, the challenge is half the fun.  Isn't it great how the love of growing our food makes us work out a way where ever we are  :)  :yum: :wave:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

 

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