Some of the stores have seed potatoes. I'm in the mid Willamette Valley,
just a bit south of Salem Oregon. It's mid February. We will get frosts at
night for at about two more months. Isn't it a bit early to be planting
potatoes? Never mind that it's been raining non-stop for a few months and
the ground is mud..
Home Depot is selling potatoes right now. They don't care when it's
planting time, they just care what they can sell. A small bag with 3 or 4
spuds in it for $6-$8? Pshhh...who are they trying to kid? Anyone who
plants potatoes now is going to have to mulch them heavily for the next 8-
10 weeks because that is how much longer we are going to get frosts. We got
a foot of snow last April, killed off a lot of the early potatoes.
LOL! I never thought about Home Desperate! I've not been in a HD or
Lowe's garden shop in years and tend to discount them. I had in mind
those outfits that actually produce and sell the potatoes or the
nurserymen who buy from those specialists for resale. The Internet is
lousy with them. It's to their advantage to help you get good results
from their products because repeat customers are where the profits are.
Surely, among them is at least one that can advise you on earliest
planting dates for your region.
I go by the university extension service calendar and my own experience.
They suggest April, though you can plant earlier if you are carefull to
mulch and cover the plants when there is a frost. I've done that, but I got
much beter results from the ones planted later in April. Just because you
can plant early doesn't mean you will get good results. If you put
eggplants in the ground in May and it's a cool spring (like it usually is),
and you don't do anything special to keep them warm, then they will just
sit there while the slugs and flea beatles eat them. I just keep them
inside until it warms up in June. Then I get eggplants coming out my ears.
The extension service lumps tomatoes, squash, melons, peppers and eggplant
together, but I know from experience that tomatoes will grow like crazy in
cool weather where eggplants and peppers will just sit there.
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