Potatoes Merlot: characteristics and features of cultivating varieties
Potatoes Merlot has many positive characteristics, but requires careful care. To grow a variety on your site, you should familiarize yourself with the characteristics of the culture. Read about how to plant this potato variety and how to care for it later in the article.
Description and characteristic
Potato Merlot is the fruit of the work of German breeders from Norika. This variety has many remarkable characteristics, and therefore has gained popularity among European farmers.
Did you know? The leaders in the production and export of potatoes are China, India and the Russian Federation. On the 4th place is Ukraine. Most of the product per capita is grown in Belarus.
Description of potatoes and tops
Merlot potatoes are larger than average. The fruit is elongated oval in shape. The weight of one vegetable varies from 80 to 140 g. The peel is reddish in color, uniform. Root crops are even, eyes are small. The pulp is yellow, dense.
The tops of plants grow straight, the height is average. Closed leaf plates of different sizes, green color. Flowering is not plentiful, buds are red with a touch of purple.
Merlot is a table variety. Root crops have a pleasant taste and aroma. When consumed, the starchy flavor is not felt, since the vegetable is medium-mealy and saturated with protein.
Did you know? The Russian name "potato" comes from the German "Kartoffel". The German word has Italian roots and comes from "tartufo" - "truffle".
Productivity and ripening dates
Root crops ripen in 85–95 days after planting. Harvesting falls on the last decade of September. With proper care of plantations, gardeners collect 715-725 kg of fruit per hundred square meters. Yields per hectare can range from 188 to 355 centners.
The undeniable advantage of the Merlot variety is its resistance to a large list of diseases. Potato shows an average resistance to dangerous diseases, namely:
- potato cancer;
- Y virus
- late blight;
- golden nematode.
There are also diseases that are practically excluded when growing crops. Among them:
- leaf twisting virus;
- iron spotting;
- black scab.
Resistance to drought in the variety is medium. In hot weather, potatoes need watering.
Advantages and disadvantages of the variety
- Merlot has many advantages. Among them are:
- fast ripening;
- high resistance to diseases;
- keeping quality;
- high productivity;
- high taste.
The minus of the variety is only one - you need to regularly care for the culture. Otherwise, the harvest will be small or poor quality.
Planting and growing varieties
The crucial stage in the cultivation of potatoes is the preparation for planting and the very moment of planting. The gardener needs to decide on the timing, choose the right site, prepare the planting material. The moment of landing is important, in which you need to follow the right technology.
Optimal landing times
It is recommended to plant potatoes in the first decade of May. The soil at this point should warm up to + 8 ° C, which is optimal for planting crops.
Crop rotation rules
For good yields, proper crop rotation must be observed.
Potatoes are best planted in the area where they used to grow:
- root crops;
- annual grasses.
The unsuccessful predecessors of potatoes are solanaceous and sunflowers. After them, it is better not to plant the vegetable.
Potato as a vegetable crop is well perceived by chernozem, sandy loam, peat substrates and loams.Merlot is preferably planted in one of these types of soil. The recommended acidity is 5.5–6.5. There are no other requirements for land - with proper care, planting material takes root in any type of soil.
Preparing planting material
Of the whole planting material, medium-sized potatoes with an average weight of 70 g are selected. There should be no cuts on the tubers. Germination before planting is not necessary, however, if desired, the procedure can be carried out.
Important! Planting of rotting or sluggish root crops is unacceptable.
For germination, the fruits are placed in a box with wet sawdust. The material is left in a dark room until the shoots appear. Recommended room temperature - +12 ... + 15 ° С. Under such conditions, sprouts will appear in 2-3 weeks.
Planting Technology Varieties
The technology for planting Merlot potatoes is as follows:
- Mark the rows 0.6 m apart.
- In the rows, dig holes 10-15 cm deep with a distance between them of at least 35 cm.
- Place the planting material in the wells.
- Sprinkle root vegetables with earth.
Features of care for the variety after planting
The agricultural technology for growing Merlot is the same as for other varieties of potatoes. The culture should be regularly looked after - watered, fed, weed, spud and prevent from pests and diseases.
Fertilizer and watering
According to agricultural standards, the Merlot variety is fed three times during the growing season:
- during the period of active growth of bushes - a solution of 0.5 tbsp. l urea and 1 tbsp. the drug "Effekton" on a bucket of water, fertilize at the rate of 0.5 l per bush;
- when budding - a solution of 1 tbsp. potassium sulfate and 200 g of ash in a bucket of water;
- during flowering - a solution of 1 tbsp. superphosphate and 1 tbsp. Effekton funds on a bucket of water.
Potato stands should be watered as needed. The frequency and amount of water depends on weather conditions. During drought, frequent humidification is needed; during the rainy season, it is better not to water it.
In this case, the soil should be saturated with moisture to a depth of 0.4–0.5 m. The maximum intensity of soil moisture is necessary during flowering of bushes. Tubers are formed at this time, so the culture requires a lot of moisture.
Weeding and hilling
Plantings are checked daily for weeds. Weeding is needed as they appear. An important procedure for growing potatoes is hilling. Productivity in this case increases by a third.
They spud potatoes three times during the growing season:
- when the tops grow to 13-15 cm;
- during flowering;
- after flowering.
Hilling is carried out in the morning or in the evening, when there is no active exposure to sunlight. Before the procedure, it is advisable to water the soil.
Pest and Disease Control
The variety is resistant to many diseases, but is not protected from all diseases. Most often on landing, you can find the Colorado potato beetle and wireworms.
Important! Pesticides are toxic to humans. When processing, use protective equipment - glasses, rubber gloves and a respirator.
Colorado beetles can be collected manually as they appear. This method is safe for the crop, since no chemicals are needed. However, manual collection is a time-consuming process, requiring constant stay near the garden.
To combat the Colorado potato beetle, use an insecticide, for example, the drug "Actaru". To prepare the working solution, mix 1.4 ml of the concentrate in 10 liters of water. 5 l of the drug is necessary for spraying 100 m² of plants. The waiting period for using "Actara" on potatoes is 20 days.
The drug Prestige helps from wireworms. A working solution is prepared by diluting 15 ml of concentrate in 30 l of water. This amount is enough to handle two hundred parts. Prestige also fights the Colorado potato beetle. If both parasites are found on landing, only this tool can be used.
Harvesting and storage
Harvested in one day. After digging, the root crops must be sorted. Rotten and dry specimens are immediately discarded.Healthy fruits damaged during harvesting are immediately processed or used on the farm.
Whole potatoes are sized and left to dry in the fresh air. Root crops are stored on average 7 months.
For long-term storage, the crop needs to create optimal conditions:
- temperature +2 ... + 4 ° С;
- humidity 70–85%;
- constant ventilation of the room.
The shelf life of the variety is 98%.
Resistance to diseases and high palatability are the main advantages of the Merlot variety. However, without proper care, growing a crop will be futile. To get a good harvest, follow the agricultural practices listed above. Only in this case, the harvest will be successful.