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  • #31
    Really promising harvest from late sown and early harvested tubers

    For some it seems the surface colour is laid down quite late, I wonder if yellow with pink hue will harvest different/darker tubers next year? Also the orangey red> They may go darker in store too.

    You look to have a good selection to take forward, fingers crossed for flowers next year.

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    • Galina
      Galina commented
      Editing a comment
      Yes they are promising. Interesting about tubers getting so much darker. But the standard pink ones do that too, they get reddish.

  • #32
    Sparrow and Silverleaf, how did you get on with your ocas? I harvested mine from seed too early, learned that lesson, but I have little ocas for next year all the same (and some biggish ones too). Have unearthed some of the usual pink ones a couple of days ago and for the first time ever got the nice 'icicle' look - never had such long ocas before. Still have some yellows and pinks to dig up. The plant next to the compost dalek (nutrient rich soil) did not produce big tubers at all - Is there a lesson somewhere?

    Now should I replant the biggest or does it not matter? Do you replant the biggest? Did you check for early tuberisation? Especially from the experimental ones, Silverleaf? Did you get flowers? I had flowers last year, but none this year at all.

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    • #33
      Standard pinks and New Zealand Red did okay - some quite big, but mostly lots of small ones. The seven experimental varieties I trialled have mostly been a bit rubbish, but I wonder if they'd have done better if I'd harvested them later - I left it two weeks after the first frost which damaged the plants (but didn't actually kill them). There was another frost forecast so I though I'd grab them before the tubers could get damaged too, and then the frost never happened!

      There are a few of the experimental ones that I plan to grow on next year - a couple with nice colours, and at least one that flowered. No seeds though.

      Interesting that you mention about nutrient-rich soil. Some of my ocas were in my new planters which was layered with hedge cuttings, kitchen veg waste, compost and grass cuttings, and the others were in little pots and were transferred into the raised potato bed when space was freed up after I harvested the potatoes. The pink ones definitely did much better in the potato bed, which was presumably quite depleted in nutrients (I didn't feed the oca at all). Perhaps they like clay soil, or maybe keeping them restricted in tiny pots stressed them so they produced more when they finally got to spread their roots out?

      If I have room next year I might run a little experiment. I'm going to try them in straw too.

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      • #34
        In terms of genetics it shouldn't matter what size your planting tubers are as they are clones of the parent and therefore genetically identical, but if you're mixing up tubers from several plants then choosing the biggest ones will increase the proportion of the more productive plant in your population.

        And it might not make much difference but I assume that a bigger tuber will give the new plant a better start than a smaller one.

        Of course, some people say you should eat the big ones and save the small ones for replanting, so who knows?

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        • Galina
          Galina commented
          Editing a comment
          Thank you - makes very good sense. The plant with the nice 'icicles' (and any further plants I dig up with superior tubers) will be replanted with better spacing. Although sometimes, just like with volunteer potatoes from missed tubers, oca have their own 'propagation strategies'.

      • #35
        Oh dear, looks like the Oca breeders club did not get a breakthrough 'European' star Oca from the tubers you got. But at least you have one with 'early' flower potential and several great colours. When are they collating everybody's collective breeding effort and where?

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        • #36
          I have joined the fb radix root crop group.
          https://www.facebook.com/groups/1411...?ref=bookmarks
          Some very interesting reading. Apparently there are day neutral ocas and daylength may not be the only factor to induce tuberisation. Jayb showed us a chimera on another page. There was also a photo of such a half/half oca tuber on facebook and the comment was made that the shoots from either side will produce oca plants/tubers that are different. Apparently a good way of getting new varieties. Another photo showed a fasciated oca - shortened to a lumpy wide tuber and a comment was made that this possibly occurs on extra big plants. Lastly also the recommendation to select the best plants (of the same variety) as a great way to really increase overall yield and size in only a few years.

          I am learning so much at the moment - fab.

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          • #37
            Originally posted by Galina View Post
            Sparrow and Silverleaf, how did you get on with your ocas? I harvested mine from seed too early, learned that lesson, but I have little ocas for next year all the same (and some biggish ones too). Have unearthed some of the usual pink ones a couple of days ago and for the first time ever got the nice 'icicle' look - never had such long ocas before. Still have some yellows and pinks to dig up. The plant next to the compost dalek (nutrient rich soil) did not produce big tubers at all - Is there a lesson somewhere?

            Now should I replant the biggest or does it not matter? Do you replant the biggest? Did you check for early tuberisation? Especially from the experimental ones, Silverleaf? Did you get flowers? I had flowers last year, but none this year at all.

            Hi Galina,
            I haven't dug mine up yet, though I should. The November frost killed them off. Mine were late planted (mid-July) in the old potato bed, but were both fed with supagrow and earthed up with what I am hoping was fairly rich manure. I have a bag of them in the greenhouse too, again, needs to be harvested. I selected my largest tubers from last year to replant. Will let you know what the harvest's like, but at the moment it's too sodden up there for me to want to spend much time at the plot.

            Comment


            • #38
              Hope they will be really good when the mud dries out a bit and you get to harvest them, Sparrow. And there is Christmas to 'do' as well, everything is just to busy at the moment. No harm will come to them until we get really penetrating frosts. Looking forward to seeing what gems you will unearth. Thanks for the replant advice too.

              Comment


              • #39
                Originally posted by Silverleaf View Post
                These bad boys arrived today from ocabreeders.org - not sure where I'm going to put them all, but how exciting! I have to report back on how they do. Some might crop well and some might be rubbish, but look at the variety in colours. Very cool.

                They were apparently all bred in Cornwall.

                Hopefully I'll get some seeds from them, assuming some are compatible.


                Thank you for the tubers Silverleaf, Gob1359 is way ahead, pic attached. Love the red foliage.

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                • #40
                  Cool! Thanks for the pic Galina, hope it grows well for you!

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