My 2018 Potato Order – What, Why & How
I had breakfast out last weekend and the potatoes were mealy and tasteless. It was a classy restaurant but I realized something about myself: I have become a potato snob. My husband mentioned the same thing. And he doesn’t usually notice food much. He said our garden has ruined the restaurant experience. He doesn’t enjoy the food when we eat out like he used. An interesting observation. Potatoes grown at home are definitely sweeter and have a nice mouth feel. Yummy. But he was talking about all the food we grow – it just tastes better.
Last year I did a baking trial with the harvested potatoes and this year I have cut my potato order way back. Last year I was trying everything under the moon. For one thing Helpful Husband wouldn’t eat the Blue Russian potatoes I bought and grew! So this year I focused my order on three family favourites.
This year I ordered French Fingerling (so tasty), Sieglinde (early and plentiful) and German Butterball (I think because of the name but it is a nice blemish-free variety.) I wanted to order Warba again just because they are so early and they have nice Irish-white flesh but John was sold out by the time I placed my order. (Later I found a few at Seedy Saturday in Qualicum Beach from another supplier so I bought those.)
Because I always need to try something new I ordered a potato four-pack of Bellanita and Bintje. As usual, I will keep you all informed of my progress but I am pretty sure you won’t be eating potatoes earlier than me (Double Dare You!)
I am so confident my potatoes will be early because Helpful Husband bought me a soil heater for the soil in my greenhouse. Here is the plan: There will be no more planting of potatoes in the greenhouse. They just linger and take up valuable space when I am ready to plant other more important things.
So, instead of taking up greenhouse space, I have placed one potato on top of 15 cm of soil inside each 15 gallon Root Pouch (a fabric bag) and placed the bags over my now hot soil cables. When they sprout I will gradually add straw to the bags.
By mid-late March, when the potatoes are actively growing I will move the grow bags off the heat cables to make room for other plantings. Then I will bury the cables in the soil.
I will keep the potatoes in the greenhouse aisles until the weather outside is settled. If it’s still chilly outside when I have to move them I will cover the plants with Agribon floating row cover to stop them from getting a chill. It’s an experiment but follow along. All I know for sure is we are closer than ever to avoiding bad restaurant breakfasts and dinners. And I expect we’ll be eating our own crop of spuds by late May or early June.
What Would Donna Do?
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