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I harvested my bed of root vegetables yesterday, My potato harvest was pretty poor, but I think I know why. See, I tucked onion sets into any spots where the potatos did not come up, and those onions did very well. Several of the onions were over 3 inches across, which is unusually large for me.

I think my soil was too high in nitrogen, because potatos do poorly in soil that is too rich, while onions love a rich, light soil. I had amended the soil with wood shavings and chicken poo, and I apparently got too much chicken poo in the mix.
 

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Yes, I was doing the math and thinking that I might succeed. An early frost would ruin a second planting, but possibly I would get a harvest

I will think on it for a wek
 

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Nitrogen is bad for potatoes, they produce a lot of leaves and no tubers when the get too much nitrogen.
 

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Nitrogen is bad for potatoes, they produce a lot of leaves and no tubers when the get too much nitrogen.
Yeah, and I suspect that was the problem. I knew that the rotting sawdust would tie up the nitrogen, and so I scattered some chicken poo on top. I think that I overdid it, because I got some unusually large onions out of that bed! And onion bulbs get larger when they get a lot of N.
 

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Yeah, and I suspect that was the problem. I knew that the rotting sawdust would tie up the nitrogen, and so I scattered some chicken poo on top. I think that I overdid it, because I got some unusually large onions out of that bed! And onion bulbs get larger when they get a lot of N.
You would have a hard time putting too much nitrogen on potatoes using chicken litter. Optimal yields on potatoes require >100 lbs. of nitrogen per acre. The timing of applying nitrogen is important with taters and a good bit should be at planting with just small doses side dressed once the plant is up and growing.
 

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My peppers yielded a bit less than usual. I believe this was due to a drought we had. I have found that peppers need something that is in rainwater that they do not receive from our well water. I kept my garden watered sufficiently. Or perhaps it is from lightning?
 

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You might consider doing potatoes in 5 gallon buckets. It is easier to control soil and moisture conditions in plastic containers.
You could also do trying growing potatoes above ground, only covering them in straw and leaf mulch.
Both practices have worked well for us.
 

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Mine has been rather dismal this year too. Plants dying for no apparent reason, others not coming in. Something in the air? (only half-joking)
 

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Early addition of nitrogen causes top growth in potatoes;

I've had problems with some of my plants too. Most of them were from too much water then too little water with a lot of heat.
 

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I didn't realize there was so much to potato growing. But I guess when you are trying to feed a nation addicted to french fries it pays to research and experiment for best production.

I know Grandma never spread manure where she wanted potatoes to be planted but otherwise we just stuck them in the ground and harvested in the fall. We always had enough potatoes for canning soup and fresh cooking until spring. I really miss those days of helping Grandma in the garden.
 
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