Monday, March 28, 2011

Floods of spuds

Ok, we haven't been inundated with 'floods' of spuds, but we have been fortunate with quite a good potato harvest.  As this was our first time growing them in the ground it could just be beginners luck, but in case anyone wants to try it (and so I remember for next year!) - here is what we did.

1.  Mix your favourite fertilizer through the soil where you are going to plant your potatoes.  We use commercially bought composted cow manure, blood and bone and a sprinkle of potash.
2.  Dig a trench - I think we went down about 15-20cm.  Put the soil along one side of the trench.  Place a thin layer of clover down in the trench (I read somewhere that it is good to use clover and since we have a big patch of clover in our lawn I thought I'd try it).  Lay the potatoes about 20cm apart in the trench.
3.  Cover the potatoes with about 5-10cm of soil and then a thick layer of your favourite mulch (we use either lucerne or pea straw).
4.  Water them in.
5.  Care for them and wait a while.  When the sprouts are about 10cm or more out of the ground cover them with the remaining soil (from when you dug the trench) and another layer of mulch.  The sprouts should still be poking above the layer of mulch.
6.  Care for them some more and wait a while.  When the sprouts are 10cm or more above that layer, add a layer of homemade compost and another thick layer of mulch.
7.  Keep caring, and wait just a bit more...
8.  After the potato plants have died, carefully dig up your harvest!

We are still waiting for all of our potato plants to die off before the final harvest - but we have several kilos already. 

1 comment:

  1. Here you go, Michelle! Let me know how you like it if you decide to give it a try. Have fun wrapping up your garden!

    Zucchini Relish

    Dump the following into a non-reactive bowl (last year I mixed it up in food-grade 5 gallon buckets, I made so much):

    10 cups ground zucchini

    1 - 4 oz. jar pimento (this year I am growing my own pimento!)

    3 to 4 cups ground onion

    Add 5 tablespoons salt.

    Cover with water and let stand over night.

    Drain and rinse well with cold water.

    Make the following syrup in a large stock pot:

    2 and 1/2 cups white vinegar

    2 teaspoons celery seed

    3 and 1/2 cups sugar

    1 teaspoon nutmeg

    1 teaspoon turmeric

    1 tablespoon clear gel or corn starch

    Add drained zucchini mixture to syrup and cook for about 30 minutes, stirring several times.

    Do not let this scorch. It doesn't have to boil or bubble. Just cook it.

    Put in jars and seal, put in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Makes about 6 pints.