Potatoes

“The NACHURS potato program provides sustainable, efficient solutions for your potato acre, focusing not only on high yields and profitability but soil health and rhizosphere chemistry as well.” - Tommy Roach, Director of Specialty Products & Product Development

Growth and Development
Nutrient Requirements
Water Requirements
NACHURS Potato Program Utilizing New Technologies

NACHURS High Yield Product Recommendations
Photo Gallery

The Potato Plant

Figure 1.  Souce: International Potato Center

INTRODUCTION

Potatoes (Solanum tuberosum) are a herbaceous, perennial nightshade that produces tubers, which are actually thickened stems that are very rich in starch (Fig 1.). They rank as the world's fourth most important food crop, after maize (corn), wheat, and rice. The potato belongs to the botanical family Solanaceae, and shares the genus Solanum with at least 1,000 other species, including tomato and eggplant.

All parts of the potato plant (except the tuber) contain a toxic, glycoalkaloid solanine (Fig 2.) which acts in defense against preditors.

Figure 2.  Souce: pubchem.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov


Potatoes are grown in many parts of the world, as well as many states in the United States.

The U.S. ranks fifth globally in total potato production, with Idaho ranking first in total planted acreage (potatopro.com; FAOSTAT, 2014).


POTATO GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT

Potatoes will grow on most soils, with light/medium texture soils being the preferred choice for ease of harvesting (i.e. mechanical). NACHURS Potato Program is based on a balanced fertility program utilizing preplant (i.e. dry broadcast), at planting (i.e. in-furrow, 2x2) and foliar nutrition applications. Potato growth is classified into five distinct growth phases (Fig. 5), and will vary based on environment, management, and cultivar interactions. These stages of growth will need to be considered when managing water and nutrients for optimum crop growth and development (Fig 6.)

Potato Growth and Development


Figure 5. Main stages of growth and development of potatoes. The nutritional requirements of the developing potato change during the growing season.
Source: Nutritional Recommendations for Potatoes, Haifa

Stage I Sprout development
Sprout develops from eyes on seed tubers and grows upward to emerge from the soil. Roots begin to develop at the base of emerging sprouts.
Stage II Vegetative growth
Leaves and brunch stems develop from aboveground nodes along emerged sprouts. Roots and stolons develop at below-ground nodes. Photosynthesis begins.
Stage III Tuber initiation
Tubers form at stolon tips but are not yet appreciably enlarging. In most cultivars the end of this stage coincides with early flowering.
Stage IV Tuber bulking
Tuber cells expand with the accumulation of water, nutrients, and carbohydrates. Tubers become the dominant site for deposition of carbohydrates and mobile inorganic nutrients.
Stage V Maturation
Vines turn yellow and lose leaves, photo-synthesis decreases, tuber growth slows, and vines eventually die. Tuber dry matter content reaches a maximum and tuber skins set.

 

Potato Growth Stage
Figure 6.  Source:  Potato Irrigation Management, University of Idaho Extension System


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NUTRIENT REQUIREMENTS

A balanced fertility program is essential in achieving maximum potato growth and development for high yield potential. All nutrients are required for optimum performance (Table 1) and are needed at specific growth stages (Fig. 7).

Function of Plant Nutrients

Table 1.  Source:  Nutritional Recommendations for Potato, Haifa

 

High yielding potatoes require a large amount of nutrients at the right time, especially nitrogen and potassium. (Table 2). Regardless of variety (red, chip, white, russet, sweet, etc.), all potatoes generally require the same quantity of nutrients for proper growth and development. Potassium is particularly important for prompt availability, as 60% to 70% of the total uptake occurs between 30 and 60 days after emergence (DAE) with as much as 15-20 pounds per day being required. As with all plants, available and adequate potassium ensures the plants functionality.

Nutrient Uptake

Figure 7. N, P, K, S uptake based on growth stage.
Source: Nutrient Management; Hopkins, Stark, Westermann, Ellsworth


High yielding potatoes require a large amount of nutrients at the right time, especially nitrogen and potassium. (Table 2).  Regardless of variety (red, chip, white, russet, sweet, etc.), all potatoes generally require the same quantity of nutrients for proper growth and development.  Potassium is particularly important for prompt availability, as 60% to 70% of the total uptake occurs between 30 and 60 days after emergence (DAE) with as much as 15-20 pounds per day being required.  As with all plants, available and adequate potassium ensures the plants functionality.

Nutrient Requirements for Potato Production

Table 2.  Source:  Nutritional Recommendations for Potato, Haifa


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WATER REQUIREMENTS



Source: Netafim USA

Availability of soil water is a major factor that determines yield and quality of the potato crop. Too little water reduces yields, induces tuber malformations (knobby or bottlenecked), or increases severity of the following pathogenic diseases:

• Common scab (Streptomyces scabies)
• Verticillium wilt (Verticillium dahlia)
• Early blight (Alternaria solani)
• Black dot (Colletotrichum coccodes)

Excess or poorly timed irrigation may reduce yields and quality, cause nutrients from the root zone. Below are common diseases that arise with excess water:several disease problems in the field or in storage, or leach or leach nutrients from the root zone.  Below are common diseases that arise with excess water:

• Blackleg (Erwinia carotovora)
• Dry rot (Fusarium sambucinum)
• Pink rot (Phytophthora erythroseptica)

Fluctuations in water availability during the growing season favor disorders such as second growth and internal necrosis. Therefore, to minimize disease potential and achieve maximum yield and quality, irrigation and/or natural rainfall must supply a uniform and correct amount of water at the proper time. Potatoes are often considered to be a high water use crop, but in all actuality many other crops have equal or greater seasonal water use requirements. This misconception arises from the fact that potatoes are sensitive to water stress compared to most other crops, have a relatively shallow root-zone depth (90% of roots in the top 12 to 18 inches of soil), and are often grown on soils with low to medium water holding capacities.

Water holding capacity is a function on the amount of sand, silt, and clay that is present. It is important to replenish the portion of available water that is used to minimize the probability of stress.


Textural Class Water holding capacity, inches/foot of soil
Coarse sand 0.25-0.75
Fine sand 0.75-1.00
Loamy sand 1.10-1.20
Sandy sand 1.25-1.40
Fine sandy loam 1.50-2.00
Silt loam 2.00-2.50
Silty clay loam 1.80-2.00
Silty clay 1.50-1.70
Clay 1.20-1.50
 Source: University of Nebraska-Lincoln


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NACHURS POTATO PROGRAM UTILIZING NEW TECHNOLOGIES

4R Nutrient Stewardship

THE ORIGINAL 4R COMPANY
For over 70 years, NACHURS has been the industry leader in providing high quality, high orthophosphate, low salt, plant fertility solutions to the agriculture industry. Although not known at the time, our foundation and core beliefs evolved around what is known today as the IPNI 4R Nutrient Stewardship Initiative, which focuses on providing the plant with proper fertility at the right rate, at the right time, in the right place, and from the right source. NACHURS has always believed that providing a high quality, low salt, high orthophosphate fertilizer at planting, in-furrow where it will be readily available to the young growing plant is the most efficient use of the nutrient provided (Fig. 8).

Rhyzo-LinkNACHURS® Rhyzo-Link® is a family of premium fertilizer products that are designed for innovative growers seeking sustainable solutions to improve nutrient use efficiency and a greater tolerance to biotic and abiotic plant stress.  These “Bio-Charged” fertilizers include a unique consortium of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) which promote a growing environment that leads to maximum yield and superior quality characteristics. Paired with NACHURS® Bio-K® technology, this leads to a higher level of plant productivity without the degenerative effects on soil health typically promoted by conventional fertilizers.  Metabolites produced by the rhizobacteria aide in improved plant health by stimulating root development, resulting in greater nutrient and water holding capacity as well as greater leaf surface area with increased photosynthetic capacity.  Stress tolerance is influenced indirectly through the production of nutrient solubilizing enzymes, antioxidant compounds, and volatile organic components. 


Bio-K

NACHURS® Bio-K® is a premium source of potash that delivers the greatest level of soluble and available potassium on the market today.  It is taken up by the potato plant faster than any other source of potassium and then immediately goes to work in the plant.  This is especially important in today’s high yielding cropping systems where low soil test potassium levels are often found.  NACHURS® Bio-K® utilizes a natural plant metabolite as a carrier which provides greater nutrient use efficiency and helps the potato plant through periods of high potassium demand (tuber initiation and bulking).  The use of NACHURS® Bio-K® leads to quicker germination, improved root development, greater production of primary/secondary plant metabolites, and an elevated tolerance to biotic and abiotic stress, which all leads to a more uniform tuber size, higher tuber starch, greater tuber potassium, better fry quality, and higher yields.  In addition to being included in all NACHURS premium fertilizers, NACHURS® Bio-K® is a very compatible source of potassium that can also be blended with other fertilizers and applied in-furrow, foliar or through fertigation systems.

 

Aqua-Tech

NACHURS® Aqua-Tech® is a delivery technology designed for ease of use for nutrients applied through fertigation systems with the end result being higher yields.  NACHURS® Aqua-Tech® is unsurpassed in preventing hard water tie-up which leads to scale formation in irrigation systems and nutrient unavailability.  NACHURS® Aqua-Tech® technology contains a patent pending polyamine molecule with proprietary additives and compatibility agents which helps protect phosphorus against adverse interaction with metals (calcium, iron, aluminum, etc.) and bicarbonates which may be contained in irrigation water sources. Products selected for this line have unsurpassed nutrient solubility and plant availability. 

  Precision Placement

Figure 8.  Maximize Nutrient Efficiency.

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NACHURS High Yield Product Recommendations

 

RUSSET RECOMMENDATIONS


The following recommendations are intended as a general recommendation for russet production. Adjustments can be made according to the geographic location of the production and soil test levels.



1. At planting

a. In-furrow with seed piece

  • 6-10 gallons of a high phosphate-containing fertilizer (NACHURS® 6-24-6 or NACHURS imPulse®) on the seed piece (or in close proximity). Always include 1 quart of NACHURS® 9% Zn EDTA.
  • To improve yield and quality characteristics, the addition of 2 gallons of Rhyzo-Link® 3-10-13 and 1 gallon of NACHURS K-fuel® is encouraged. For every gallon added of the afore mentioned, remove an equivalent amount of high phosphate-containing fertilizer from the mixture.
  • Never exceed 10 total gallons of fertility solution on the seed piece, with 8 gallons being optimum.
  • Additional N, K, S, Ca, and/or Mg can be banded or broadcast according to soil test, geographic location, production needs, and/or yield goals.


b. Banded to side of seed piece

  • If using ammonium polyphosphate (i.e. 10-34-0), use 1 gallon of NACHURS K-flex®, NACHURS K-fuel®, or Rhyzo-Link® 0-0-15 in order to provide a more balanced nutrition (K, S) package.


2. At hilling


a. Side-dress

  • Apply additional units of nitrogen to meet production goals with 1-3 gallons of NACHURS K-flex® or NACHURS K-fuel®. 
b. Fertigation
  • Apply 3-7 gallons Aqua-Tech® 7-20-4 to boost phosphorus levels if required. Additional NACHURS K-fuel® can be added depending on potassium levels.


3. At hooking/tuber initiation (40-50 days after emergence)

a. Foliar spray

  • Apply 1-3 gallons of NACHURS K-fuel® (2 gallons being optimum) and 1 quart NACHURS Finish Line® alone or in conjunction with a fungicide. This is to help meet increasing plant potassium demand.


b. Fertigation

  • Apply 2-3 gallons of NACHURS K-fuel® to help meet increasing plant potassium demand.
  • If phosphorus is required, apply 2-5 gallons of Aqua-Tech® 7-20-4.


4. At early tuber bulking (60-75 days after emergence)

a. Foliar spray

  • If no fertility or only high phosphate-containing fertilizer plus zinc was used at planting was used at planting, then apply 1 gallon of NACHURS Triple Option® and 1 pint of NACHURS® 10% Boron.
  • If Rhyzo-Link® 3-10-13 and/or NACHURS K-fuel® were used with high phosphate-containing fertilizer at planting, then additional nutrients may not correspond to higher yields but rather to altered size, grade, specific gravity, starch, sugar, protein, and/or fry color.
  • Additional nutrients (N, Ca, Mg, S, Cu, Fe, Mn, Zn) may be added depending on plant tissue levels and environmental conditions.

b. Fertigation

  • If phosphorus is required, apply 1-3 gallons of Aqua-Tech® 7-20-4. Applied phosphorus may alter nitrate levels, so pay close attention as this may affect final yield.


5. At late tuber bulking (80-95 days after emergence)

a. Foliar spray

  • If no fertility was used at planting was used at planting, then apply 0.5-1 gallon of NACHURS K-fuel® and 1 pint of NACHURS® 10% Boron.
  • Additional nutrients (N, Ca, Mg, S, Cu, Fe, Mn, Zn) may be added depending on plant tissue levels and environmental conditions.


6. At plant desiccation (21-28 days before)

a. Application of nutrients at this time may not correspond to higher yields but rather to altered size, grade, specific gravity, starch, sugar, protein, and/or fry color. Apply 1 gallon of NACHURS Triple Option® and 1 pint NACHURS® 10% Boron if desired.

CHIP/TABLE STOCK RECOMMENDATIONS


The following recommendations are intended as a general recommendation for chip and table stock production. Adjustments can be made according to the geographic location of the production and soil test levels.



1. At planting

a. In-furrow with seed piece

  • 7-11 gallons of a high phosphate-containing fertilizer (NACHURS® 6-24-6 or NACHURS imPulse®) on the seed piece (or in close proximity). Always include 1 quart of NACHURS® 9% Zn EDTA.
  • To improve yield and quality characteristics, the addition of 2 gallons of Rhyzo-Link® 3-10-13 and 1 gallon of NACHURS K-fuel® is encouraged. For every gallon added of the afore mentioned, remove an equivalent amount of high phosphate-containing fertilizer from the mixture.
  • Never exceed 11 total gallons of fertility solution on the seed piece, with 9 gallons being optimum.
  • Additional N, K, S, Ca, and/or Mg can be banded or broadcast according to soil test, geographic location, production needs, and/or yield goals.


b. Banded to side of seed piece

  • If using ammonium polyphosphate (i.e. 10-34-0), use 1 gallon of NACHURS K-flex®, NACHURS K-fuel®, or Rhyzo-Link® 0-0-15 in order to provide a more balanced nutrition (K, S) package.


2. At hilling


a. Side-dress

  • Apply additional units of nitrogen to meet production goals with 1-3 gallons of NACHURS K-flex® or NACHURS K-fuel®. 

b. Fertigation
  • Apply 3-7 gallons Aqua-Tech® 7-20-4 to boost phosphorus levels if required. Additional NACHURS K-fuel® can be added depending on potassium levels.


3. At hooking/tuber initiation (40-50 days after emergence)

a. Foliar spray

  • Apply 1-3 gallons of NACHURS K-fuel® (2 gallons being optimum) and 1 quart NACHURS Finish Line® alone or in conjunction with a fungicide. This is to help meet increasing plant potassium demand.


b. Fertigation

  • Apply 2-3 gallons of NACHURS K-fuel® to help meet increasing plant potassium demand.
  • If phosphorus is required, apply 2-5 gallons of Aqua-Tech® 7-20-4.


4. At early tuber bulking (45-55 days after emergence)

a. Foliar spray

  • Apply 1 gallon of NACHURS Triple Option® and 1 pint of NACHURS® 10% Boron.
  • Additional nutrients (N, Ca, Mg, S, Cu, Fe, Mn, Zn) may be added depending on plant tissue levels and environmental conditions.

b. Fertigation

  • If phosphorus is required, apply 1-3 gallons of Aqua-Tech® 7-20-4. Applied phosphorus may alter nitrate levels, so pay close attention as this may affect final yield.


5. At late tuber bulking (65-75 days after emergence)

a. Foliar spray

  • Additional nutrients may not correspond to higher yields but rather to altered size, grade, specific gravity, starch, sugar, protein, and/or fry color. Apply 0.5-1 gallon of NACHURS K-fuel® and 1 pint of NACHURS® 10% Boron if desired.
  • Additional nutrients (N, Ca, Mg, S, Cu, Fe, Mn, Zn) may be added depending on plant tissue levels and environmental conditions.

 

6. At plant desiccation (21-28 days before)

a. Application of nutrients at this time may not correspond to higher yields but rather to altered size, grade, specific gravity, starch, sugar, protein, and/or fry color. Apply 1 gallon of NACHURS Triple Option® and 1 pint NACHURS® 10% Boron if desired.

 



NACHURS® Potato Gallery (32 Photos)

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Photo A- Potatoes- Check
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Altendorf Farms- Minto, ND. Left- NACHURS 6-24-6-1S @7gals. Right- 10-34-0 @7gals. Qt of zinc applied on both.
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Potatoes from ND: Left- Rhyzo-Link 3-10-13 @2gal + NACHURS 6-24-6 @5 gal. Right- 7gal 10-34-0
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From a NACHURS Dealer and New Jersey- Potatoes
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From a NACHURS Dealer and New Jersey- Potatoes
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Minton, North Dakota
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New Jersey Potatoes: NACHURS Triple Option and Rhyzo-Link 3-10-13 produced a substantial increase in tubers versus the non fertilized row.
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New Jersey Potatoes: NACHURS Triple Option and Rhyzo-Link 3-10-13 produced a substantial increase in tubers versus the non fertilized row.
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New Jersey Potatoes: NACHURS Triple Option and Rhyzo-Link 3-10-13 produced a substantial increase in tubers versus the non fertilized row.
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Aqua-Tech 7-20-4 on Potatoes, MI
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Aqua-Tech 7-20-4 on Potatoes, MI