Spuds or Duds?

Potato Harvest 2014

Potato Harvest 2014

This year’s garden has been all about trying new techniques, veggie varieties, and not being discouraged by your typical gardening fails.  With that said, I embarked on the adventure of growing potatoes…in containers.  After much internal debate, and scouring the web for directions on “How to grow potatoes?,” I figured I’d take my chances and try growing them in containers.

My raised bed garden is located in part sun, and when NJ gets a decent amount of rain, it tends to stay wet in that garden, very wet.  So this year I constructed a raised pallet situation full of containers for plants that enjoy the sun’s rays a lot.  A perfect place to put containers holding potatoes? I thought so.  With seed potatoes bought in March and stored in a cabinet, I geared myself up to plant these little gems around Mid-May.  Whoa, bad idea…many of these little seed spuds were a bit moldy.  I was determined though…mold wouldn’t stop me.  I didn’t even google “What happens if you plant moldy seed potatoes?,” and that says a lot.  Google and I are definite BFFs.  I had four 5-gallon containers, in which I planted 8 seed potatoes.  Two per container.  The varieties chosen: Yukon Gold and a mystery variety because I forgot to label that bag.

Before I knew it they started to sprout, and then grow wildly out of control.  These potatoes quickly reached the limit of their container’s and stood about 3 feet above the container.  “Wow,” I remember thinking, “these are so out of control, and will probably yield nothing substantial.”  I am sure you have all had a crop of root vegetables where foliage was beautiful, only to find when harvested, the actual vegetable itself was lackluster to say the least.

Taken halfway through the growing process.

Taken halfway through the growing process.

About two weeks ago, my potato giants had pretty much died back, and to prevent rot, I harvested the potatoes.  To my surprise, sixty potatoes emerged.  Not of monumental size, but still wonderful potatoes!  The biggest surprise of all were the red potatoes harvested that I didn’t know I planted (see mystery seed potatoes above!)

Potato harvest 2014

Potato harvest 2014

photo 4-1 photo 2-1

Harvesting time!

Harvesting time!

So all in all, I will say that my adventure of growing potatoes was a success!  I will be sure to take pictures of whatever I make with them, and let you know how they taste.  So far the little moldy seeds turned out ok!  Happy planting!

 

 

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