Friday, May 24, 2019

Q & A: How to Clean Up Freshly Dug Potatoes

I recently received the following question from a reader regarding washing and cleaning up freshly dug potatoes.  I told her that I would do a post on it.

Question/Comment:  I would love to know if you have perfected the best way to get them washed up. I'm afraid to send that much dirt down the sink and into my septic tank

My answer …

When we dig potatoes we put them in a crate, notice that the crate has lots of opening in the sides (and the bottom too).   The crate gets set on a cement block for draining purposes while they are being washed.

Next, I take the water hose and spray water on the potatoes from the top and all four sides.

Here they are all squeaky clean.   The potatoes are allowed to drain for a few minutes and then moved to a covered area out of the sun to continue to drain and dry.

This keeps the dirt and sand on the potatoes out of the house and out of the sink drain.  

Additional Information:  It is better to NOT wash your potatoes until you're ready to use them.   However, because of our hot and humid weather we don't have the luxury of being able to store them for more than a few days.  We dig a crate full, wash them and preserve them within a couple of days of digging.  I hope this additional info is helpful!

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  1. That is a great way to clean them! Thanks for the idea! Cheryl in WA

  2. Coming from a family of 5 generations of potato growers, none of our extended ever wash potatoes when first dug up - they last better if the soil is left on them. We only wash the soil off just prior to preparing them to eat.

    1. Fran, yes, you are right. It is much better to leave the soil on them until you're ready to use them. However, in our situation where the weather is so hot and humid we simply cannot store them or leave them lying around, we have to preserve them within a few days or they start to go bad. We dig a crate full, wash them and then preserve them within a couple of days of digging. Thanks for bringing out this very important bit of information.

  3. What a great idea! Thank you so much Mrs. Patsy! Now I will need to find one of those crates. We live in central Georgia so I know what you mean about the heat and humidity. :)

    1. The Powers Family, our heat and humidity cause us to have to do things differently than what is normally done in other areas, but where there is a will, there is a way!


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