Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

I planted out some 'desiree' seed potatoes ten weeks ago.  They've grown well - I mulched them to about 40cm using sugar cane mulch and horse manure (and some blood and bone occasionally).  They flowered a couple of weeks ago, and the flowers (from first batch) have finished now.  I had a dig around in the mulch to see if there were any potatoes growing, but alas, none!  There do seem to be some under intial soil layer though (which was about 15cm).   From what I can see through the mulch, it's just stem in there. Is this normal? 





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Kipfler do grow reasonably well, the Cranberry Red was disappointing, so few tubers but then I put them in late (August). Sapphire I don't know.

The Bunnings at Rothwell had their seed potatoes in the main shop down towards the garden centre, just piled up on a small display off to the side of the main passage - not in the garden-ware shelves. Earlier in the season the feed merchants at Rothwell (Mc Carthy's Redcliffe Produce) had bags of seed potatoes probably Sebago, but you need to get there early around May.
They kept them with the the spring flower bulbs... at least the Bunnings I've been to does... they were there in Autumn for a while.. I didn't see them last time I go to Bunnings a couple of weeks ago... maybe I just didn't pay attention.
Hi Lissa, I grew kipfler last year and was very happy with the results especially as it was my first time growing potatoes. Like Elaine I haven't had a lot of success with cranberry red and ended up with four which just sat in the cupboard. They all sprouted so that's what I've got in this year. They are growing really well and had little potatoes on them until my bantam got under the fence and ate them! Some market bought big white ones (don't know the type) sprouted too and I've put them in but no action as yet.

Good luck!
Just been to Bunnings at Rothwell. They currently have lots of Pontiacs and a few Desiree, the Pontiacs have well-developed eyes. No idea whether they will grow well here, nothing like a bit of a trial, eh?
I found them in a stand selling bulbs at the entrance to the garden section (but actually in the BBQ/ outdoor furniture section)
I was in my local Produce shop this afternoon and asked if they had any - they didn't but the gent who works there is keen to help and making enquiries for me.

I'm feeling sad and stupid today - went to the Abby Medieval Fair with my son and a couple of his mates and I've lost my reading glasses! Catastrophe. I'm wearing the spares which make all printed words a little blurry. Not good. Will have to outlay for more.
oh no, i hope they turn up - check with the organisers? or st john's ambulance if they were there?
I had a couple of potatoes which started to sprout (red rascals, purchased from the markets) so I hardened them off for about a week then stuck them in the ground not expecting much. I did the mulch & soil method to about 30-40cm and whilst one went really well, one died back after about a month and one failed to show at all. The one plant that did make it was recently harvested and had about 3 good size spuds (about the size of a squashed softball) with a few med-small ones. It looked just like a little potato family :). I read that some varieties don't readily flower and I was beginning to worry they might be in the ground too long, so pulled them up and made some mashed potato. They were fantastic, so on the back of a successful trial i've planted another dozen (in a different bed) and will be interested to see how they turn out. At this stage i'm just using sprouting spuds that would otherwise be used for cooking but understand the advantages of buying certified seed potatoes. I'll also be doing a trial in pots shortly and see how that goes.

My soil is a predominantly "organic multi mix" from redback landscape supplies with some compost and chicken manure mixed through. I didn't give any additional feeding throughout the grow period but they weren't allowed to dry out too much and were planted in light, well draining soil. They received about 6 hours of direct sun per day.
Brent, I'm less than convinced that paying extra for 'certified' stock is worth it. Success for me has been mixed to say the least. I bought - at great expense since they added $9.50 for postage - some seed potatoes which came from Victoria via Green Harvest. My point is that unless you can be sure you are getting local (south-east Queensland at least) stock, you might just as well plant the ones from the shop which taste great.

What we are missing is warm-adapted variety/ies. Scarlett, you had some info from a Food Connect grower but he didn't say which variety he grew. Any chance of finding out? However attractive the endless choice is with taste, texture, colour ... ultimately, we have marginal at best growing conditions here in and around Brisbane.

Some important issues are: enough sunlight; good drainage; low pH soil (6.5 or a bit less); less nitrogen than you might imagine ... great green leaves do not great tubers make ;-) and best of all, a micro-climate which encourages growth being a combination of all the above. And better yet, sprouted potatoes which thrive in warmer conditions.
I think the growers just called them 'old potatoes' which isn't a variety name - it just refers to when they are picked in the season (?)

They are the big boring white ones - not mealy for baking, not waxy for salad - just in between, all rounder types. Your 'garden variety' spud... Anything that looks like that is probably worth a go.

If i discover the variety name I will certainly post it
sounds like just the ticket

I've had similar mystery death rates using non-certified seed potatoes
Has the opportunity to buy seed potato passed? My produce shop advise they cannot supply. Bunnings (Carseldine) advise they are all out as well. Anyone know of a stockist around Strathpine or if I'm simply too late to put them in? Thanks.


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