Vernalization of potatoes before planting
Potato vernalization is an additional tuber preparation procedure necessary to accelerate the ripening process of the crop. The complex of agrotechnical methods includes selection, sorting, processing of planting material before planting.
Preparing Potato Tubers: Tips
Choosing high-quality potatoes for planting is a guarantee of a high yield. Tubers choose the same size weighing 80-100 g without damage by fungi, pests, infection. If, when sorting tubers, sprouted ones come across, then potatoes with elastic, thick, pink, white, purple sprouts are suitable for planting. Black, dry sprouts indicate the presence of fungal diseases, they are not suitable for reproduction.
Potato vernalization: wet, dry, combined methods
There are three ways to vernalize potato tubers.
Passes with the use of wet sand, peat, sawdust, perlite. Perlite is considered ideal: litter for potato tubers holds moisture well, is not afraid of fungal infections, and has a neutral pH.
How to carry out: cover the bottom of the box with paper, fill with perlite, moisten the substrate with water, put the potato tubers in one row. Layers of perlite and tubers can be alternated, the height of the «pyramid» should not exceed 50 cm. The humidity level of 85% in the box must be maintained, and the temperature in the room should be within +15 degrees. The tubers are ready for planting when sprouts up to 5 cm and roots appear on the eyes.
The processing of planting material without the use of a wet substrate is called dry vernalization.
How to carry out: spread the tubers on paper on racks, floors, shelves in the sun, moisten with water from a spray bottle, leave until germination. The frequency of spraying is daily from a spray bottle. Potatoes need to be turned every 3 days. The sun’s rays provoke the production of solanine — the tubers turn green, and solanine is considered a good poison for fungal populations and is completely safe for humans, because potato tubers are germinated for planting, and not for eating. Prepared potatoes should have up to three sprouts 3-5 cm long and multiple rudiments of roots on the eyes.
Combined vernalization — a combination of two methods
How to carry out: stand potato tubers under sunlight (green), place in a substrate until fully “ripened”. Holding time 2 weeks. Before planting, treat the tubers with insecticides.
Timing of vernalization of potato tubers
Pre-planting vernalization of potato tubers begins 40 days before planting, the planting of the prepared material in open ground is carried out when the earth warms up to +8 degrees. The soil temperature should be measured at a depth of 30-40 cm. When planting potatoes in the northern regions of the country, heat-shielding agents (burlap, brushwood) should be prepared: in the event of return frosts, the beds with planted potatoes can be covered and saved from death.
Potato vernalization is needed to prepare planting material and to reduce the ripening time. The process does not require special preparation and a lot of time, and the result will please — the volume of the crop with such processing increases by 25-40%.
But if you are still a beginner and are not familiar with the technology of growing potatoes, our authors will help you with this.