Early potatoes are one of the most delicious and healthy vegetables of early summer. Do you want to eat young potatoes already in early June or even at the end of May? Use the secrets of a fast harvest from Becker.

In terms of the amount of vitamin C, young tubers are almost 1.5 times ahead of overwintered tubers, and besides, they are much tastier. The new crop contains a lot of potassium, phosphorus and magnesium, vitamins B1, B3, B6 and folic acid (B9), which is indispensable for cell health.

Early varieties of potatoes

Plant several early varieties of potatoes with different growing seasons and fruiting periods. This will protect you from the vagaries of the unstable climate of our country and provide yourself with young potatoes for a long time, as the harvest will ripen gradually. When choosing them, start from your culinary preferences and climatic features of the area.

If you like to boil potatoes or make mashed potatoes, plant friable ultra-early varieties — Riviera, Meteor, Early maturing, Impala, Lasunok or pink Red Scarlet. Young tubers will be ready for digging in 1.5 months after germination.

After the earliest, you can dig out quickly boiling early ripe varieties — Nevsky, Explosive, Gulliver, Antoshka, pink Lyubava and Bellarosa. You can cook fragrant delicious dishes from them 2.5 months after germination. And in order to prolong the pleasure of homemade potatoes longer, add medium-early varieties to the beds — Kamensky, Explosive, Romano, Bryansk delicacy, Mayak, Zhenechka, Armada or Ilyinsky; their vegetation is extended up to 3‒3.5 months.

Pay attention to the color of the pulp — there is more carotene in yellow varieties, therefore, they are more beneficial for vision — Gala, Krasa, Colette, Alvaro, Picasso. Exotic purple early potato varieties are high in anthocyanin, a natural antioxidant that helps normalize blood pressure. Their flesh and skin come in a wide variety of hues, ranging from deep blue and purple to almost black. True, there are no ultra-early ones among them, but will that stop you?

Landing dates

  • Determine the timing of planting according to the temperature of the soil at a depth of 10-12 cm. When the earth warms up to 7-8 ° C, you can proceed. Consider also the long-term weather forecast of 2-3 different weather bureaus. If spring promises to be late, adjust the planned dates.
  • Please note that optimal planting dates will vary in each area. Average values ​​are the middle or the end of April. If you plant a little earlier than the recommended period, cover the beds before germination with a film.
  • One of the secrets of a quick harvest is to germinate potatoes before planting for 4-5 weeks. To do this, lay out the planting tubers in daylight in 2-3 layers. Store them at +20…+22 °C for the first weeks, then at +13…+15 °C. Sprouts hatch green, strong and small. Tubers, in the future, will have time to form long before the mass spread of late blight.

Advice. The sprouts are very large, but is it suddenly cold outside? Help them not to outgrow — lower the temperature to +5 ° C.

  • If you want to get an extra early harvest, you can grow real potato seedlings. Plant the tubers in cut plastic bottles. At the bottom arrange a layer of drainage. After two weeks, when the plants reach 10-15 cm, transplant into open ground, where they will bloom in 1-2 weeks. The optimal conditions for growing seedlings are on a glazed balcony, where the temperature is not lower than +15 ° C.

Growing features

The agricultural technology of early potatoes differs little from the traditional one and also includes repeated loosening of the soil with hilling bushes. The best predecessors are legumes, cruciferous and pumpkin crops. Do not plant after other nightshades (physalis, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers), as these crops share common pests and diseases.

Tuber nutrition should be dosed. An ideal fertilizer is organic matter, which contributes to the accumulation of humus in the soil and improves fertility. Make humus in the fall at the rate of 400-800 kg per hundred square meters. Add mineral supplements to them, especially nitrogen and phosphorus. Early potato varieties are very responsive to special potato fertilizers such as Leda Nitrogen Phosphorus Potassium Fertilizer or Leda Superphosphate.

Help the bushes to form more and larger tubers abundantly. To do this, at the beginning of budding, water 1–2 times (50–70 liters of water per 1 sq. M), maintaining soil moisture within 70–80%. Daytime temperatures of +21…+23 °С and night temperatures of +14…+15 °С also contribute to a large harvest.

The most dangerous for tender tops are return frosts — 1 … — 2 ° C and below, when the greens wither, sometimes destroying the entire bush. Spunbond or polyethylene will help save the plants. In the sun, the temperature of the soil under such a shelter at a depth of 10 cm increases by 3–8 °C. On cloudy days, as well as at night — by 1-6 °C. Try not to remove the protection until the threat of night frost has passed (by this time the bushes reach a height of 15-20 cm).

Growing potatoes takes patience

You will need not only knowledge, but also certain gardening skills, including the processing of crops from the invasion of Colorado beetles. But you will succeed, and next spring you will get a rich harvest of delicious young potatoes!

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