Friday, July 10, 2020

These Potatoes Have a Special Purpose!

In spite of 13 1/2 inches of rain in June and 4 1/2 inches this week, these potatoes survived!

Ordinarily, we would have had them out of the ground in June but with all the rain, it just wasn't possible.

We started digging them this week and yes, we found lots that had already rotted, about as many as were good.  Still, we managed to save these two crates plus a portion of a smaller basket.  It's a lot more than we thought we would get.

So, if we didn't think there would be much of a harvest, why did we bother?  Here's why, these potatoes were an experiment.  

We purchased a box of potatoes from the little Mennonite settlement we try to visit a couple of times a year in August of 2019.  We brought them home and ate on them off and on until January 2020.  By this time all that was left was small ones and they were wrinkled and starting to sprout.  I almost threw them away but decided instead to plant them to see what would happen.  We were having a hard time finding seed potatoes to have to plant in February so we thought, 'what have we got to lose!'


When we planted them, we didn't cut them according to their 'eyes', we just dropped them whole, as they were, in the ground and covered them up.  We really didn't expect them to even come up, but they did.  They not only came up but they grew and grew and grew.

They grew so well that I thought it would be one of those times when what's above the ground is a lot better than what's below the ground.

Then, with all the rain in June and now in July we almost didn't even try to dig them, but I was curious to see if there was anything under the now dead plants.

Yes, indeed, there was something under them and like I said above, the harvest would have been at least twice as much if we could have gotten them harvested sooner.

All of the above is not why I'm excited about these potatoes though!  The reason I'm excited about these potatoes is that I can possibly use these like seed potatoes and replant them in February, like we did their mother potatoes this past February.  It would be wonderful if we could get to the place where we wouldn't have to purchase seed potatoes every year.  That's why I'm excited about these potatoes and why these potatoes have a special purpose!


patsi


Practical Proverbs 31 Living
She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27

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12 comments:

  1. That is amazing! Wow, you have had a lot of rain!

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  2. So glad you were able to harvest all those potatoes
    I can see an encouraging, biblical? story there too ..the potatoes that you almost threw away, survived the floods and multiplied and may become seed potatoes next year. I think that is pretty awesome

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    1. Kathy, we think it's pretty awesome too!

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  3. How exciting! How in the world will you keep them from sprouting though? It is so hot here, they would either sprout or rot or both? I would love to be able to have seed potatoes, but in FL it just isn't happening. All the more reason to get to a cooler space. TN, VA or NC!

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    1. Barbara, I'll bring the ones inside that I plan on saving and keep them in a cool, dark out-of-the way place.

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  4. I love your story, Patsy. I've worked hard at obtaining open pollinated seeds for most of my garden needs for the same reason. I'd rather collect the seeds from my garden and use them again the next year than having to send the money over and over.

    I also tried replanting some green onions I bought in late winter super cheap from the grocery store. They are now flourishing in a pot on our deck! DD has enjoyed snipping off just what she needs to add to an egg salad sandwich, or top a baked potato. I love how far that $.49 bunch of green onions has stretched.

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    1. Rhonda, saving seeds and working toward things that regrow themselves just makes prudent sense to me.

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  5. My father always planted the left over potatoes from the previous harvest. I didn't even know about "seed potatoes" until I was an adult. What we do to save money and still feed our families well. Right?

    This year I didn't use all my onion harvest. I put some of the sprouting ones back in the ground to harvest the seeds. I am also going to plant some store bought onion seeds in August to see if I can make my own "onion sets" for next year. Wish me luck.

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    1. Cass, I've got onion seeds I'm going to try to grow onions from this fall/winter. And yes, we work hard to keep our family's feed the most frugal way possible.

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  6. That’s amazing, Patsi! I’ve only grown potatoes once, many years ago, just to try, and only got a few. My question is, how do you store the edible potatoes so they stay good for as long as you did? It is so hot here in Houston that even putting them in my dark pantry doesn’t keep them from growing eyes and sprouting. I always thought a root cellar was a good idea but we couldn’t have one here...start to dig and pretty soon you’d hit water! I’d love to find a way to make potatoes last. I know storing them in the fridge changes the starch in them and they turn sweet. I’m going to try again in Feb 😊

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    1. Kathy, our water table is so high a root cellar is not an option here either. I keep the potatoes in an air conditioned room in the darkest area possible. I also check them regularly and use accordingly.

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