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Potatoes from your own garden are something very special. But to be really mature, you must wait for the right time to harvest. When that is exactly, read here.
Potato cultivation in our own garden is becoming increasingly popular with us, after all, it is also completely unproblematic. When it comes to the harvest of potatoes, then the ideal time is especially important. Of course, this depends largely on the cultivated variety, because there are early, mid-early and late potato varieties.
For the very early varieties, you can count on the harvest from the beginning of June. However, the new potatoes do not have a very long shelf life either. They are therefore mainly for immediate consumption.
For the mid-early and late potato varieties you have to wait quite a long time until a harvest is possible. Sometimes it takes until October.
❀ The right time
When harvesting potatoes, you should never stubbornly follow the calendar. Potatoes must always be completely ripe when harvesting. You can tell by the fact that you can no longer peel the shell off with your fingers. Only then are the tubers ready for harvest. At the time of harvest, the above-ground green should already have dried up and died. But even then you do not start with the harvest, but wait about two to three weeks.
When the above-ground parts of the plant have died, the plant puts all its strength into forming a hard shell around the tubers. And this thick skin is very important if you want to store the potatoes afterwards. (Reading tip: storing potatoes - 5 tips for proper storage)
The optimal weather
If you want to harvest your potatoes, you should choose a sunny day with dry weather.
❀ Be careful when harvesting
For harvesting the potatoes, it is best to use a special grave fork. It is important that you remove the tubers very carefully and gently from the ground. If some potatoes are injured then you should eat them as soon as possible.
Carefully penetrate into the soil with the grave fork. The plant should be raised from below. So do not dig into the ground directly at the plant, but rather further away. Holding the tool at an angle to the plant, the grave fork serves as a kind of lever. If the soil is loose enough, you can pull the plant out completely with some tubers completely from the underground. Then, if possible, you should dig up the soil with your hands to find the remaining potatoes.
❀ Proper storage of the potatoes
There are some things to keep in mind so that you can store your potatoes as long as possible. Spread the potatoes in a dark place immediately after harvest, so they can dry better and the remaining soil will fall off more easily. Do not stack potatoes high on each other during storage, as this quickly causes bruises that can easily lead to mildew.
For storage, it is best to use potato hordes, which also provide enough air to the tubers. (»Order cheap potato box here) The storage location must be dark and, above all, frost-free. Optimal for storage would be a temperature between four and eight degrees. In addition to the cellar, the loft is ideal.