Monday, March 8, 2010

My Potato Garden

February 2010 338
Sometimes it pays to forget your reusable bags. I use paper bags to hold my potatoes until they are ready to be put in the ground. I keep the potatoes in a dark spot in the garage where they are stored at approximately 40 degrees. I will plant them at the end of March. Potatoes can survive a light frost, but I have to wait until all danger of a hard freeze is over. When we get snow, which we inevitably will, I will cover them like this.

I am about to venture into controversial territory, feel free to disagree (sweetly) in the comment section. I will tell you what I think are the 3 major differences between buying seed potatoes and planting organic potatoes that were purchased at the grocery store.

1. When you purchase seed potatoes, you know the exact variety you are buying. Store potatoes are often labeled something ambiguous like red potatoes.

2. Organic Potatoes purchased at the store are less expensive. I paid $1.94 a pound for seed potatoes and bought a 5 pound bag of organic potatoes for $3.99 (not on sale) which works out to less than .80 cents a pound.

3. Grocery stores feel compelled to wash the potatoes before they sell them to you.
February 2010 342I washed part of the All Blue seed potato so you could see the color. I have used a combination of store bought organic potatoes and seed potatoes.

I pick the smallest potatoes I can find, so that I get more potatoes per pound. Then I don’t cut them up; I plop them in the ground whole. I use the trench method for potatoes, but they are well suited for container gardening.

Are you going to be growing potatoes this year? What are your favorite varieties? I am thinking of adding one or two more varieties to my garden.

I am linking this post to Works For Me Wednesday, because although I do buy some seedling potatoes, I am just as happy using store bought organic potatoes!

6 comments:

Troy said...

When I was a kid, we had a root cellar. Every spring when it got war, we cleaned out the cellar and brought up all the rotten potatoes that had not made it through the winter. This whole stinky mess was buried at one end of the garden. By fall, there was always a big potato crop there, which we supplemented buy adding potatoes that we gleaned from the big farms.

We never actually planted, but I'm going to try this year. I have saved all my "too small to peel" potatoes all winter, 2 or 3 from each 10# bag, and I am going to plant them, they are an assortment of all the different potatoes we have eaten all winter, and I am just going to plant them randomly and see what happens.

I didn't see your name entered on my giveaway, It would be right at home in your garden. It ends at Midnight Wednesday, so there is still time to enter.

http://i-refuse-to-recede.blogspot.com/2010/03/abc-wednesday-g-is-for-giveaway.html

Troy

Alea said...

Troy- We had rogue watermelon and pumpkin gardens when I was a child. Good luck with your potatoes; it will be fun to see what you harvest!

The Halbert Home said...

Thank you for this post. I've been contemplating growing potatoes the container way. I have some that have over ripened due to my forgetfulness and have been trying to decide if I could use them or if I should buy seed potatoes. Now I'll give it a try!

Jenni said...

Great post! I didn't realize I had the option of using a container for potatoes. I'll be too late this year for them, but I will try next year. I gave up on the forever house dream (well not entirely, but for the short term) and just started digging in at our current place.

The Prudent Homemaker said...

We are trying potatoes this year, from store-bought potatoes. Potatos go in the ground here in January. I'm not sure we'll get much for the space they take, and we have limited space, but they're growing well right now!

Alea said...

Prudent Homemaker- I am sure that if anyone can yield a large harvest in a limited space, that you can!