Nematodes on Potatoes

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Potato plant IMG_0158.JPG
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Nematodes on Potatoes

I have a problem with my potatoes which I have also had in other years. The seed potato is certified (Cliff kidney). The lush-looking ones I planted two weeks before the odd-looking ones. They are in different parts of the garden. I think it must be something to do with soil. I would be very happy to get some adivce on this issue.

Thank you for sending in your photos. This makes it much easier to diagnose the problem with your potatoes. 

Your “lush” potatoes are looking exceptional! However, the “odd-looking” looking ones are unfortunately barely recognisable as a potato. The probable cause of your misshapen potato plants is due to nematodes. These are microscopic round-worms that attach to the roots of potatoes and other plants. 

Typical symptoms of nematode infestation include malformation of flowers, leaves, stems and roots. Nematodes are a real problem for large scale potato producers. 

Crop rotation is the only real solution, hence why many potatoes growers lease land for two to three years before moving on to new sites before the problem of nematodes arise. In the home garden, do not cultivate potatoes in this area for the next five to six years.  
 

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