Content of the article:
Potatoes are extremely sensitive to the lack of moisture in the soil. On a not too extensive, reaching a depth of 30 cm, the root system of this culture has a significant load. For a short period of vegetation, the plant not only increases a large amount of greenery, but also should give what it is cultivated for - tubers.
How to choose the optimal time for watering, how often to water potatoes in open ground, so that the crop will not disappoint either quantity or quality? With a lack of moisture, it is not worth waiting for a good potato harvest. But the excessive content of water in the soil also does not benefit.
When to water the potatoes after planting in the ground?
While the first leaves didn’t appear above the ground, the potatoes do not really need additional watering. If the planting took place on wet ground, then at first the plant is quite enough of this moisture. But with the development of the plant, and especially with the beginning of the formation of buds, the need increases dramatically.
The time when it is just necessary to water the potatoes after planting comes:
- when the potato sprouts 5–10 cm rise above the ground level, that is, 2 weeks after the spitting of the seedlings;
- when plants pick up buds, meaning the onset of tuber formation;
- in weight gain in tubers, which is in the middle lane in the first half of August.
When using high-quality planting material and following agricultural practices, potatoes can produce up to one and a half tons of tubers per hundred.
Dates and volume of irrigation in hot weather
At the same time, potato growers with experience on the question: “Do I need to water the potatoes?” Answer that irrigation is necessary. After all, the rains in the summer months are extremely irregular, and the gardener can not be sure that the roots of the plant do not lack moisture. And in a number of regions the heat is accompanied by strong winds, contributing to the evaporation of moisture from the soil. How do the terms change in this case, how often should the potatoes be watered in the open ground in windy sunny weather?
- In this weather, potatoes need plenty of water every 4–5 days.
- If the air temperature is moderate, you can water the plantings no more than once every 8–10 days.
potatoes Although solar energy and heat are needed by plants, lack of moisture or irregular unplanned watering can negatively affect the number of tubers and their quality:
- When watering the potatoes after planting for the first time, this ensuresgrowth of aerial parts of the plant.
- Water entering the soil in June and July, when the plants are ready to bloom, increases the number of tubers.
- Later irrigations lay the foundation for large, full-sized potatoes.
Peculiarities and terms of irrigation of early
potatoes Water-deficient bushes, at the beginning of the growing season, do not form enough stolons on which tubers could appear. As a result, instead of several dozen potatoes, from 5 to 12 pieces appear on a bush. Therefore, especially for varieties of early ripening, spring and summer watering is so important.
How to water potatoes for early harvest? The first watering is done in the middle of the bush, when the shoots will rise by 5–10 cm. At the same time, at least three liters of moisture should fall on each bush. Getting at this time a sufficient amount of moisture, the bushes develop not only the above-ground part, but also give the stolons diverging to the sides.
Compared to autumn harvest potatoes, early varieties consume less water, but they do it more intensively. Therefore, it is unacceptable for the soil to dry under the plants.
If the hand immersed in the depth of the fingers remains dry in the ground, is it necessary to water the potatoes? Yes, this is a sure sign that the plants are thirsty.
- As the bush develops, the volume of moisture consumed grows to 6 liters per day.
- If we consider that some of the water evaporates from the soil, then under each plant in hot dry weather at least 12 liters of moisture should fall.
This rule also applies to the planting of mid-season varieties.
Watering during the period of emergence and growth of tubers.
It is extremely important to moisten the soil during the period of tuber formation, the corresponding time interval between the appearance of the first buds and the mass flowering of potatoes. It is impossible to wait for the buds to appear en masse, even single flower stalks - this is a sign to the beginning of irrigation, which will not be slow to affect the yield increase by 15–30%.
Another critical period, when watering potatoes after planting is extremely important, is associated with the growth of tubers:
- The beginning of this period of time coincides with the end of flowering.
- The ripening of the future crop ends with the dying off of the tops.
- For one watering, the plants should receive about 20 liters of water, just this amount can completely soak the arable layer.
In order to avoid the development of late blight, potatoes need to be watered so that by night, when the air temperature drops, the foliage is dry.
How to water potatoes to avoid scab, cracks and deformities on tubers?
When digging out tubers, large but ugly potatoes are found, many gardeners are puzzled. In fact, irregular irregular tubers are the result of irregular irrigation, between which the plants have long remained in conditions of moisture deficiency.
In a drought, the growth of the potato is inhibited, and soil moisture again starts this process. As a result, growth points develop unevenly, and the tuber gets a fancy shape. If the terms of irrigation of potatoes are observed and the soil remains moist during the formation and growth of tubers, the potatoes turn out to be even, they are not affected by scab, and no cracks appear on their surface.
Creating a comfortable environment for potatoes
How to water the potatoes and calculate the time when watering is really necessary?
- The best time for watering during the hot season is evening hours. Often used morning watering is dangerous due to the fact that the rapidly rising sun burns wet tops.
- The minimum water volume per bush is 3 liters. The specific amount of moisture is determined based on weather conditions, type of soil and potato varieties. Light, loose soils require more watering than loams and black soil.
There are different opinions on how to water the potatoes:
- Some gardeners consider watering at the root as a priority.
- Others prefer to wet the furrows.
- During the long absence of rain, irrigation is good for early potatoes, after which the soil is loosened to retain moisture.
Dry irrigation and mulch - an effective addition to irrigation
No wonder this method is called "dry irrigation."This technique not only successfully holds water in the ground. Loosening replaces watering and with sufficient moisture. Potatoes do not respond well to overly dense soils. Loose soil is easily permeable to nutrients and air. However, such work is possible only with the emergence of shoots.
You can save irrigation water and slightly stretch the time needed to irrigate potatoes by actively using mulch from seedbed green manure, dried sawdust and other organic matter on the beds. When the summer heat arrives, the mulch provides plants with a comfortable coolness, condenses moisture from the air and, as it overheats, becomes a top dressing.