Potato, or Tuberous Solanum (Solánum tuberósum), refers to perennial tuberous herbaceous plants of the genus Solanaceae family Solanaceae. When deciding which garden crops to plant after potatoes, and which ones to use as predecessors of this vegetable, one must take into account the botanical features of the potato.
The plant has a bare and ribbed stem. The leaves are dark green, intermittently unpaired and pinnately dissected, consisting of a terminal and several paired lateral lobes, placed against each other. The flowers are white, pink or purple, collected in a kind of shields on the apical part of the stems. Calyx and whisk of five-section type.
In the leaf rudimentary sinuses located on the underground part of the stems, stolon shoots are formed, which, thickening, form tubers with a surface covered with a thin layer of cork tissue. The pulp of tubers contains a high amount of starch. Full ripening occurs in July-September. The fruits are represented by multi-seeded dark green poisonous berries with a diameter of 1.8-2.2 cm. The green vegetative parts of the plant contain the alkaloid solanine. The homeland of potatoes is considered to be South America, in the territory of which you can still meet wild-growing culture.
Potato cultivation in our country is widespread almost everywhere. Vegetable culture is unpretentious, but requires fertile and fairly loose soil. Potatoes should be planted in the early spring, observing crop rotation rules.
The best precursors for potatoes are:
- winter bread, including rye, fertilized with organic and minerals;
- annual legumes such as peas, vetch, lentils and beans: their roots improve soil quality;
- pumpkin and green manure, which favorably affect the yield of potatoes.
How to cultivate the soil after potatoes (video)
You should also focus on the soil composition and climatic conditions in the cultivation region.
So, Good predecessors for potatoes can be considered crops:
- winter barley;
- winter rye;
- winter wheat;
- spring barley;
- horse beans;
According to phytosanitary indicators, silage corn, sugar beets and alfalfa can be attributed to acceptable potato predecessors. Winter and spring rape, peas and lupins are good, but too costly precursors, so winter bread is better to sow instead. Around megacities and near industrial centers, potatoes are recommended to be grown after annual grasses and clover for one year of use.
What to grow after potatoes
Potatoes are a very good predecessor for most other popular and common garden crops:
- carrots, onions and cucumbers;
- table beet, daikon, radish, radish and turnip;
- green crops such as different types of lettuce, sorrel and spinach.
It is important to remember that after any representatives of the nightshade family, including tomatoes and potatoes, strawberries should not be grown.
Proper planning of crops for the next year is a guarantee of high productivity.
Joint planting of vegetable and green crops is very relevant with a limited area of the site. Moreover, they help to increase the overall productivity of garden crops and protect them from damage by many pests and diseases.
- The beans grown between the rows of potatoes can additionally enrich the soil with nitrogen, and the potatoes protect legumes from bruchus.
- Marigolds, nasturtium and calendula prevent the defeat of potatoes by a potato nematode.
- White cabbage, corn, onions and garlic, eggplant and spinach, horseradish and mint are mutually beneficial neighbors for potatoes.
Potato: growing (video)
It is undesirable to grow potatoes next to sunflower and tomatoes, which can provoke defeat by late blight. Also undesirable neighbors for garden crops are cherries, including felt, as well as red and aronia and mountain ash and raspberries.