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Potato Problems  RSS feed

 
Brandon Greer
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Location: 1 Hour Northeast Of Dallas
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My potatoes have been in the ground about 3 weeks and nearly all of them seem to be having problems. I've attached images. Can someone tell me what the issue might be and how to remedy it?
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John Elliott
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Verticillium wilt? Fusarium? Could be some nasty soil fungus like that.

At this stage, it has probably infected the whole plant, so there is not a whole lot of hope for this crop. The usual suggestions are to plant another crop next year that is a different variety with some resistance.

You may, and this is a longshot, you may get some help if you douse it with an aerated compost tea that can outcompete the fungal infection. This is a longshot because the compost tea application will be foliar, while the infection may be in the stems and the roots.

I am a strong believer in the power of cover cropping mustard to reduce fungal soil pathogens. There is controversy in the literature whether this works or it doesn't, but I tried it and it worked for me. Or should I say it was one of the things I did and now I have much fewer problems (I do have one tomato seedling that is off to a suspiciously poor start this year).

Long term, you should keep adding rotted organic matter to your soil to build up the good soil fungi. With enough good soil fungi present, the pathogens can't compete and they die off.
 
Alder Burns
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It looks a bit like frost damage to me. Remember that heavy mulch has a strange attraction for frost, and I have seen it damage tender plants at measured temperatures in the near vicinity well into the 40's…… I've learned the hard way to keep bare soil around tender stuff till it's practically summer now…..
 
Miles Flansburg
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Maybe a chemical from the field where the staw was grown?
 
Brandon Greer
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Location: 1 Hour Northeast Of Dallas
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Just to be clear: Are my potatoes lost for this year? Or should I be looking to treat them?
 
Judith Browning
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Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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Brandon Greer wrote:Just to be clear: Are my potatoes lost for this year? Or should I be looking to treat them?



I thought it looked like a little frost damage also....had the temperatures been that cold? is the damage getting worse? is the new growth OK? I wouldn't worry about the damage if they are putting out good new growth.
 
Brandon Greer
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A couple weeks ago the temperature got down to the high 30's or low 40's. I'll need to double check next weekend when I go there to see what the new growth looks like. I didn't think to check that.
 
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