Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Potatoes! The grand finale!

Well, I actually harvested potatoes. I think I got about 10pounds, maybe a little more.
I really thought the flowering was a bust and I wouldn't get anything, I thought the cold dampness was just rotting them out of the ground.
But, I stuck a pitchfork into the ground to investigate, and unearthed decent little potatoes. (Really, really glad the whole pitchfork in the ground thing worked, because I didn't have a clue how to harvest potatoes, I just had a vague memory of reading in a book somewhere that it could be done with a pitchfork.)
It turns out that the larger half, the southern half, of the row was the Yukon Gold potatoes. These turned out larger underground too. Very tasty. I love 'em. Potatoes were about the size of my fist.
The smaller plants in the northern half of the row were the little red potatoes. These are the favorites of several members of my family. They ended up as large fingerlings I think.
Both colors had a couple of plants that were busts, but equally, both had plants that were amazing.

Thoughts to take with me to next year?
Hilling up was a pain. Growing the potatoes vertically would compound that problem. Until that problem is solved, maybe I should plant the potatoes in a trench and then "fill in" instead of hilling up.
Try and get a potato/garlic storage bin out of one of the woodworkers I know. Something with a couple of large bins for potatoes and a couple covered baskets for garlic, or a space with hooks to hang braids of garlic.
This years experiment definitely broke even, I think in order to really save a significant amount I would need to plant more.

All in all a fairly easy and tolerant crop. I think I will be planting a row in future gardens.

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