Saturday, June 18, 2011

Treasure Hunt

I remember when I was a little kid going on a "Treasure Hunt" where items had been placed in a sand box and all the little kids had to dig around to find their treasures.

Digging for potatoes is a bit like that and "Oh, Boy" was I excited!

I went out about 6:30 this morning and pulled up the potato plants.  Look what popped up when I did that!

I was practically jumping up and down clapping my hands.

I stuck my head in the house and said to SM "You might wanna pop out here for a few minutes and see what comes out."  SM says that I was as excited as a little kid.  "Lookie!"  I pointed proudly.  "Is that cool or what!"

I got out my little kneeling mat and got to work.  After digging out the first few I ran into some rotten ones.  "Uh, oh."  This can't be good.  (I followed the John Jeavons method.  Which is basically stick a potato deep in the ground cover it up and see what happens.  No hilling required.)

"Phew"  nothing stinks worse than a rotten potato.  And they "pop" when you touch them.  Ugh.

It seems that I have a water line in my raised beds.  The top half was dry but the bottom half was damp.  The last time this bed got rain was about 6 days ago.  SM and I discussed this as I continued searching for potatoes.

SM "We always hilled ours.  We grew those great big white potatoes.  It was still easy to harvest them because of the hilling."

Me  "Well, that's what we'll be doing next time for sure."

When all was said and done, I had about 14 lbs of good potatoes.  Many were decent sized to very large, along with the handful of little pebble potatoes. 

I expect I had about 5 lbs of rotten potatoes though.  So around 20 lbs from 5 lbs of starter seed potatoes.  (I bought a 5 lb bag of organic Red Pontiac potato seed, plus a little 3 lb bag (close out sale) of Yukon Gold from Walmart.  Never buy your seed potatoes from Walmart.  Nothing much happened with those.)

So this was a fantastic learning experience.  I haven't even cooked these up yet but I know they'll taste better than any potato I've ever eaten.  I plan on using the "hilling" method of planting potatoes from now on. 

Can I use some of these potatoes and "reseed" another batch?  Or do I need to buy seed potatoes?


  1. Tami: You can plant the bitties! I always save some of the little ones to replant. Also..if you buy organic potatoes from the store they should grow for you too...if it's not organic they've been sprayed with a sprout stopper. Your harvest is beautiful! I love growing is like Treasure Hunt!

  2. How fun! I'm glad to know that we can plant organic potatoes to make new ones! Hash browns, anyone?

  3. What fun it is to harvest potatoes! I snuck a few potatoes from the beds today to have on Father's Day. My potatoes still have a few weeks to go.

    Congrats on you potato harvest!

  4. Tami this is so awesome! Your first tater crop!! Wait till you cut into one of those babies! They snap! You'll never get a store bought one that does that for ya!