potato harvest: what lies beneath

deep___roots(ca9/sunset15)May 12, 2011

I must be doing something right. Biggest potato I've ever seen. That's a quarter on the spud. I planted around January 1st. Yesterday I rooted around and pulled a few. Didn't expect this!

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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Gorgeous, deep roots! I used to grow potatoes in Indiana. They were the MOST delicious potatoes ever. I used the little tiny baby potatoes for soup, and the bigger spuds for everything else. What variety are these and how are you growing your spuds?

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2011 at 11:01PM
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tropical_thought(San Francisco)

I am growing potatoes. I harvested one bush, but there were too many of them to eat. They seem to go bad in just a few days. Then I figured out you can take just one potato from the ground a day and leave the rest underground. So, last night I had just one yukon gold with dinner.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2011 at 7:19PM
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deep___roots(ca9/sunset15)

Those might be California White. I am notoriously bad at marking what I plant. I also have Purple Majesty, a couple of russet types (one is Noortaka or something like that), some Yukon Gold, and French Fingerlings (yea!).

I have a raised bed, several types of free-standing potato bags and my usual assortment of 1/2 wine barrels, drainage tubes, old garbage cans.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2011 at 12:01PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

Fabulous. Nothing like home-grown potatoes. They are the most fun vegetable to grow with small kids. They get to "treasure hunt" and pull out their own spuds. I haven't grown potatoes here back in Calif, yet, but maybe next season. I used to grown Yukons, Purple Majesty, Adirondack Red and Russets. French Fingerlings sounds great, I'll have to try those next year. I think I'll put them in 1/2 whisky barrels, too. Saw the whisky barrels for sale at Lowe's just last weekend, and I might pick up a few just to have them on hand.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2011 at 11:52PM
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homey_bird

Nice one! I have always only grown potatoes from the store bought ones when they begin sprouting and then just throw them and wait.

So -- in order to get better yield next time, I wonder, what do I need to do? How much water do they need? Do you put them on the drip or just leave them? How about fertilizing?

    Bookmark   May 17, 2011 at 7:24PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

We need to put them on a drip here in California. Can't count on enough rain water like I could in Indiana. Plus, being in pots they'll dry out even faster than they would in the ground. You'll want the soil moist, but not wet. So, adjust your drip system to give you "just moist". They like cool weather, so start them early here in California, especially if you're in S. California. Seed potatoes may give you a better yield, since potatoes from the grocery store are treated with a chemical to prevent sprouting (although they will and do sprout if planted). They are heavy feeders (like tomatoes, their close cousins), so for me, I planted them in my great garden soil topped with compost, then mounded up straw around the plants as they began to grow. That way, I could harvest my potatoes through straw instead of dirt. And I fertilized with fish meal or a good vegetable fertilizer of your choice (5-10-10 or 10-20-20). That should do it, and give you lots of great spuds!

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2011 at 8:01PM
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homey_bird

Thank you very much! Your instructions were great!!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2011 at 7:05PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA

You're welcome :-) Potatoes are easy peasy to grow, and a very fun crop to grow with kids. They just love digging for the potatoes. And, for us in California, that do not DARE stick anything in the ground that might be considered a gopher delicacy, they are just so great to grow in containers. And for some reason, home-grown potatoes taste so much better, so flavorful and creamy. I was blown away by the difference in taste when I grew them in Indiana. Just like home-grown tomatoes, there is simply no comparison. And, they keep very well in the ground until you're ready to cook up some more.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2011 at 8:42PM
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