Wednesday, November 7, 2007
For those of you who were around in the Spring, we planted potatoes this year in a garbage can-- Dad calls them my garbage potatoes. I drilled drainage holes, put about 8 inches of dirt in the bottom, and planted 5 seed potatoes (a mix of yukon gold and reds.) After the vines grew 12 inches, I covered all but the top inch with hay and kept adding more hay till they grew out the top of the barrel. When they all died back in the fall we dumped it out and harvested our "treasure." (Instructions are from Cisco the Gardener, found in the PI.)
As you can see it was a very scanty treasure, with some potatoes the size of marbles! I had doubts about doing the same thing next year, no matter that the cost was almost nothing since I already have the garbage can and lots of straw. I'd just need more dirt and some seed potatoes. But the TASTE..oh my, folks. These potatoes are incredible- I boiled them Monday evening, and the skins were tissue-paper thin and delicious, and the vegetable itself was buttery smooth and so POTATO tasting. No seasoning needed. I'm definitely doing this again, even if we only get one meal's worth. (Now that I've said this, everyone is going to ask why I didn't invite them over for our Monday meal :o)
Changes for next year, and for anyone else who wants to grow- I'm going to use more dirt. Maybe start with 12 inches to plant in, then cover the next 12-18 inches with dirt as well. I really like doing this in a garbage can because they're so easy to dig out in the fall, and you can dump the whole thing into a tarp, pick out the vegetables, and load the whole thing into the yard waste cart. I don't know how many more potatoes I'd get if I didn't use any straw. I don't think we'd get more than 2 feet of dirt populated with potatoes- they seemed to all be near the surface, anyway.