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Miss Becks

Thanks for that link geoff. Useful. He used a bag in that article. I have empty growbags at hand, only the 20ltr ones though. I know they'd be tall enough, but would they be wide enough, once I've started hilling?

Alternatively, I have a large plastic dustbin spare, or a few of those thick, plastic,rectangle recycling bins. I suppose I could try all 3, see what works.

Miss Becks

Forgot to ask if I should use just Multi Purpose compost, or a mixture of compost and garden soil.


Multi-purpose would be best-garden soil might have too many weed seeds and also not drain well in a container-that is my experience anyway

Miss Becks

Ok, thanks Geoff. You did well with yours! I'd be happy with that.


I have read on here about xmas potatoes being planted now, What is the best variety to plant.?

I keep looking at my potatoes and am finding it hard to resist getting them up....Ive been growing Charlottes in bags and emptied one of them (had3 tubas in) the other week but only got enough for tea but there were lots of marble sized ones so I'm trying to wait in the hope that I get more from the other.

I've planted Maris Piper in other bags and it said they were for sep/oct but they have already flowered and the foliage is starting to look a bit worse for wear...What do I do... I have got a Hessien sack ready for storage..but just not sure when to get the up....I have been lead to beleive that the more you water potatoes the bigger they get..any truth in this?

Thanks, sorry for all the quires but im new to this lark 



Let the foliage die down and keep watering-it is a bit early to be lifting main crop yet-they are treated slightly different to earlies like Charlottes.


1st earlies are the one's to get to plant for xmas as they are the quickest to grow to harvest. You need to look sharp though as most are selling out and buying on line means P&P.  

Miss Becks

When you are hilling potatoes (Mine are in containers), do you firm down the soil when you've covered the leaves? I covered mine for the first time yesterday morning, totally over the new leaves with compost, and they have grown through already. Admitted, I only put a light covering on, but should I firm it down, or just leave it?

Insomnia-I;m sure posters will have diffrent answers to your Q and different methods, I'm certain, work . 

Once the spuds has been planted, I fill the bag half way with compost, about 9inches, bearing in mind there are stones in the bottom, then there's a layer of compost to lay the spuds on. When they start showing leaves, I cover again with about 2 - 3 inches of compost and keep doing this until the bags are full to about 5 inches from the top.

If the leaves grow to several inches it becomes more difficult to get the compost under the leaves without breaking them and NO do not firm down the compost, you are likely to break the roots/plant stems! which is what the new spuds grow from.  

Alternatievly, some posters fill the bag right up to the top after planting the spuds.

Nows thew time to put in about 4 to 5 short canes into the bag and thread twine around them as a support, the foilage does get quite high and a strong wind will break it without the supports.

Miss Becks

Right, gotcha Zoomer. Thanks. Glad you said about the canes. never even gave that a thought. Cheers.

Miss Becks

Mine have started flowering now, after only 4 weeks? Is this normal? And what do I do now? Just leave them be?

 Never known Christmas spuds to flower  4 wks after planting, spring planted one's don't flower that soon...fair to say that's a tab bit unusual. Could be due to the tall is the foilage, can you post some pictures.

Miss Becks

These were them Sunday Zoomer, but I only noticed the flowers today. (ignore the mattress in the background! LOL It's gone now






Frstly your containers are to shallow to produce a reasonable crop.

New spuds grow off the stem of the growing foilage and if most of the foilage is above the level of the soil you won't get many spuds, a deeper pot means you are earthing up for longer and the plant takes longer to reach the surface or the point were it wants to flower . The plant in August will think due to the heat and light it needs to reproduce so it will flower, earthing up slows down this process because the plant hasn't produced enough foilage above the ground to think it's being threatened.

Put it down to experience, you can't stop them flowering, wait for the foilage to die back then pick your spuds. Plant in deeper pots next year or plant a little later and see how near Christmas you get this is third time lucky for me.

Other poster may have a different view.    


Miss Becks

Well, it's my first time, and saw other people on other websites had used similar tubs and had sucess, so gave them a go. I have put others straight in the ground, and some in empty growbags. Those are just two that have flowered. None of the others have, so I may still get spuds!!

And the seed potatoes only cost me 50p I think, so not lost a lot. This is what I love about gardening. Trial and error, and always learning!

Thanks for your response!

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