b'minute: What do you get paid for inyourproductionsystem?Theanswer to this is what you need tofocus on in order to maximize prof-it. Finding the best number of stemsfor the cultivar and desired outcomeis essential to an economically prof-itable potato operation. Thebestwaytodeterminestemnumber is to do a grow out beforeplanting (Figure 2). The more repre-sentativeseedsampledandthemore uniform the method of sam-pling, the better the chance of accu-ratepredictions(100seedpieces Figure 2. Potato seed grow out in the NDSU greenhouse.wouldbeagoodnumbertostart carefullymeasureandtreatseed hope is that it can be a successfulwith). Grow outs can be done in soil withgibberellicacid(GA).Ifthe year. Paying attention to the smallor in bags and require 3 to 6 weeks. stem number is too high minimiz- and simple details in the spring canPay attention to the time between ingtheagingbykeepingthebin result in large benefits at the end ofthestemreadingandwhenyou temperature cool (38-40 F), plant as the season. plantbecausestemnumberwill early as possible without subjectingincrease slightly more as tubers age yourseedtoincreasedinstorage.Thegoodnewsisthat diseasepressure,moderate success in predicting stem increasewithin-rowcounts can increase the bottom line spacing,ortreatseedif managed properly. Keep in mind witha1-Naphthale-that seed in storage will age slightly neaceticacid(NAA) Potato & Sugar Beetmore that the seed tested, so expect (sold as Rejuvenate). For STORAGE SOLUTIONSasmallincreaseinstemnumber example,theeffectsoffromwhatwascounted.Practice plantingdateandstor- Fully Perforated Strip Perforated Quarter Round Ventswill help improve your predictabili- agetemperatureonty.RussetBurbankstemnumberareshowninByhavinganaccurateideaofthe Table2.Anotherexam- Dedicated to Help Preserve andnumber of stems prior to planting ple,inTable3,shows Protect Your Agricultureyoucanmanagetheseed.Ifthe the effect of Rejuvenate Investmentsstem number is too low, increase the on stem number. storage temperature to 50-60 F (to Rick Lenarzagetheseed),delayplanting, As we go into the 2021 701.371.9980decreasewithin-rowspacing,or Rick.Lenarz@TrueNorthSteel.comgrowingseasonmy www.TrueNorthSteel.com14 POTATO GROWER APRIL 2021'