Store bought potatoes and planting 'em - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 02:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We had been taught that store bought potatoes will not grow if planted 'cause they've been *treated* somehow not to.....

Anyone know anything about this?
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#2 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 04:10 AM
 
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I'm not sure about that one at all. I have sucessfully grown potatoes & given sprouting potatoes to friends to grow BUT they were organically grown potatoes to start with. I would guess that the non-organically grown ones would maybe be sprayed with some kind of growth retardant to stop them sprouting before they get sold. So if they're sprouting, they *should* grow.
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#3 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 04:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Your answer makes sense, OceanMomma....

That's what dh and I were both taught that they would not grow if planted cause of some growth retardant. But why are they sprouting?

Yikes, does this mean our potatoes have added chemicals?
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#4 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 05:12 AM
 
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The growth retardant probably does just that - retards growth as a pose to totally kills it. I s'pose we have to be thankful for that at least.

The guy in the organic vege shop told me that the way they harvest conventionally grown potatoes was to use a defoliant ( think agent orange! well maybe not quite that but something similar ) to kill the above ground growth & then they just go thru with a machine to dig up the potatoes.

Over here, organic potatoes are not that much more expensive - if at all - than conventionally grown ones & I can so taste the diff that I don't bother getting the conventional ones anymore.

If you do want to grow some potatoes, I have had really good results with planting them into a trench of wilted comfrey leaves. This is a tip I got off our local heirloom vege seed supplier who wrote a little gardening book. Trenches of seaweed are also good.
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#5 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 12:39 PM
 
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I think I might be confused, but I'm pretty sure of this....
Potatoes are a two-year plant. The first year produces the potatoes you eat, the second year produces the seed. So, if you plant the potatoes, you will get a plant, but not potatoes. I know that's true for carrots.
I think the ones you plant are chemically treated to make potatoes, not the ones you eat are chemically treated to not to make potatoes. I do know that the plant-able ones often have fungicides, and should not be eaten.

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#6 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 04:16 PM
 
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I've never heard of potatoes being bi-annual. Scarey what they do with chemicals - huh ? the variety I've been growing are types of maori potatoes. They're heirloom varieties that captain cook originally left behind so they're too old to have been "modified" in any way. You can get the seed potatoes from heirloom seed places here & organic vege shops sell them occasionally. All I've done is either planted the potatoes themselves ( from the vege shop ) directly in the ground or left them in a brown paper bag to sprout & then planted them.
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#7 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 04:31 PM
 
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Ever have one of those mornings?
Sorry, potatoes are NOT bi-annual. I totally mis-remembered that one.
The real reason given for not planting them is they might carry plant disease, which is hard to get out of your garden. Also the yield tends to be less than for seed tatoes. I found lots of good info here:
http://216.239.39.100/search?q=cache...&hl=en&ie=UTF8
(Google cache page, the original is not found anymore)
I apologize for posting information that I knew I wasn't sure of. I should have taken the time to check it first.

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#8 of 8 Old 06-12-2002, 04:37 PM
 
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I planted potatoes in a bit pot out on my porch once and they grew fine. I just planted some in my garden a couple of weeks ago and they are already sprouting.
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