First potato harvest

3 Dec

I was lamenting recently that I’d lost control of the garden. Well thanks to the motivation provided by a few visitors, an upcoming Christmas party and a little bit of help from Sarah at Kitchen Adventures, I am getting it a bit more under control.

The ugliest part of the garden was perhaps the tired potato bed out the back. Liz mentioned that she thought that it might have been ready to dig up, which honestly hadn’t occurred to me. It has now been 21 weeks since planting and this afternoon I thought it was time to clean the place up.

So I dug while J gathered, and it reminded me so much of doing the same thing as a kid. I really didn’t realise back then just how much of a raw deal it is to be the parent digging, rather than the kid scrambling after the little treasures.  I managed about half of the bed before admitting defeat and enlisting P to to the rest of the digging (while I joined in the scrambling).

I don’t actually have any photos of the harvesting (we were having too much fun), but in the end we had ourselves 9 kilos of potatoes. There was a mix of Kipfler (the little salad potatoes) Dutch Cream (regular-sized white ones) and Royal Blue (purple on the outside, white in the middle).

Tonight I made a few of the royal blues into some mash. They really were amazing – not sure if it was the variety or just how fresh they were, but I’ll be planting royal blue again for sure.

A great side effect of the potato growing is the quality of the soil afterwards. The bed was almost entirely filled with mulch and blood and bone, so digging the bed over was just amazing. So much richness and organic matter –  I can’t wait to put something else into the bed now.

I think if the potatoes hadn’t suffered the massive caterpillar attack and therefore been pulled up a bit early, then we would have had a lot more. This potato growing thing is as fun as I remembered!

Now does anyone know if I would get away with planting another crop now, or is it too late?

10 Responses to “First potato harvest”

  1. Frogdancer December 4, 2011 at 7:16 am #

    I’d put some more in. What have you got to lose?

    • L December 4, 2011 at 10:01 pm #

      My parents reckon the same thing. I guess it can’t hurt, can it?

  2. Leanne Cole December 4, 2011 at 7:32 am #

    We dug up one plant last night to have roast potatoes with some lamb. They were so nice. I have no idea how many potatoes I have, but looking forward to eating more. I didn’t even thing of taking a photo.
    Try planting them, see what happens. Our summers are longer now, so you might have a chance. I might plant some more too.

    • L December 4, 2011 at 10:01 pm #

      It’s so exciting, isn’t it!

  3. Sarah December 4, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    Yeee ha! That’s a lot of taters!! We’re coming over for potato salad lunch 🙂

    Until I started getting potatoes delivered, I never realised how delicious really fresh potatoes are!

    • L December 4, 2011 at 10:02 pm #

      Please do! Robyn can’t make it tomorrow, and we’ll be lonely!

      • Robyn December 4, 2011 at 10:31 pm #

        😦 Susie eats potato now! You’d better leave some for next week! 😛

      • L December 4, 2011 at 10:53 pm #

        I don’t think we could go through 9kg in a week, even if we tried!

  4. Darren (Green Change) December 5, 2011 at 8:44 am #

    We’ve been wanting to get our potatoes in for a couple of weeks now, but it’s rained every weekend so far!

    You can definitely plant more. Our climate is the same as yours (we’re just down the road in Jamberoo), and you can pretty much grow potatoes year-round. Commercial growers need to time for maximum yield, but us backyarders can keep going all year!

    Whenever we get potatoes shooting in the cupboard, we plant them out.

    Potatoes are the best for sowing into new garden beds. As you discovered, they make the best soil for whatever follows!

    • L December 5, 2011 at 9:47 am #

      Thanks Darren! I’m about to pull out my globe artichokes, and the soil is terrible! So I’m thinking potatoes might just be the solution.

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