When to plant potatoes: Can you plant potatoes now? – Express


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Express. Home of the Daily and Sunday Express. POTATOES are a staple in British households, with this versatile vegetable able to slot into any meal. Can you plant potatoes now? PUBLISHED: 14: 23, Sun, Feb 21, 2021 | UPDATED: 19: 35, Sun, Feb 21, 2021 This Morning: Carol Klein gives advice on growing potatoes Make the most of your money by signing up to our newsletter for FREE now Invalid emailWhen you subscribe we will use the information you provide to send you these newsletters.
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You can unsubscribe at any time.Boiled, mashed, baked, fried, or roasted… potatoes are delicious, and even more delicious when grown yourself. Potatoes are known as ‘earlies’ or ‘main crops’, but what does that mean? Can you plant potatoes now?When to plant potatoesIt’s nearly time to plant potatoes, but right now you should be chitting the potatoes and preparing the ground.Potatoes can be planted between March and May, ready for harvest between June and October.Potatoes are a cool-weather crop. They aren’t able to grow in freezing weather so you’re better off waiting until at least march.READ MORE-  How and when to plant garlic - the handy tips you need to know When to plant potatoes: Potato-growing season is coming up (Image: Getty) When to plant potatoes: Planting starts in March (Image: Getty)How to grow potatoesThe Royal Horticultural Society has explained exactly how to sow, prepare, plant and grow potatoes.SowPotatoes are grown from specially prepared ‘seed’ potatoes or tubers.You can buy these seed potatoes in the supermarket from October onwards and then start them off indoors before planting them. When to plant potatoes: You need to prepare the seed potatoes first (Image: Getty)PrepareYou should chit the seed potatoes before planting them to allow them to start sprouting shoots.The RHS site explains: “Stand them rose end up (the end with the smallest dents, or eyes) in egg boxes or trays in a light, frost-free place.“The potatoes are ready to plant when the shoots are about 3cm (one inch) long.“With early potatoes, rub off the weakest shoots, leaving four per tuber.”DON'T MISS... Carol Klein shares advice on growing potatoes [INFORMER] How to make a raised garden bed [INSIGHT] Alan Titchmarsh: Gardening expert explains how to grow potatoes  [EXPLAINER]GrowPotato plants need ‘earthing up’ as they grow to ensure early shoots are protected from frost damage and developing potatoes aren’t exposed to light and turned green and poisonous.The RHS site explains: “It’s a simple process – once the stems are about 23cm (nine inches) tall, draw the soil up around them, creating a ridge about 15cm (six inches) high.“As the stems grow, repeat the process several times. The final height of the ridge should be 20 to 30cm (eight inches to one foot).“Keep the plants well watered in dry weather – particularly once the tubers start to form.“Maincrop potatoes benefit from a nitrogen-rich fertiliser around the time of the second earthing up.” When to plant potatoes:The potatoes need to be earthed up (Image: Getty)PlantThe first early potatoes should be planted around late March, second earlies should be planted in early to mid-April, and main crops should be planted in mid to late April.The RHS site states: “The timing also depends on where you are in the country – planting should be slightly later in colder regions and can be earlier in milder ones. When growing in containers, you can plant earlier too.“Potatoes need a sunny site. Avoid planting in a spot prone to late frosts, as the newly emerging foliage is susceptible to frost damage in April and May.”Prepare the ground, ideally the previous autumn or winter, by digging in plenty of organic matter such as garden compost or well-rotted manure.The RHS recommends the traditional planting method, which involves digging a narrow trench 12cm (five inches) deep.Space the tubers 30cm (one foot) apart for earlies and 37cm (15 inches) for maincrops, in rows 60cm (two feet) apart for earlies and 75cm (30 inches) apart for maincrops. Then, apply a general-purpose fertiliser.
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