This year’s tater crop was epic!
I’ve only grown potatoes the last few years. But seriously, they are probably the easiest vegetables to grow. Luckily, I haven’t had many problems from pests like potato beetles (I probably just jinxed myself…). You mostly just plant your seed potatoes and let the plants run their course until they begin to turn yellow and wither. Once they flower, after a few weeks, you know the plants have started to form potatoes. You can dig them after they flower if you want the young, baby potatoes. They do need hoeing a couple times, though as the plants grown. But that’s about it. I don’t have a lot of room, but I planted six seed potatoes, and probably got 15 pounds of potatoes. Just think if I had more space.
The first couple times I planted them, I didn’t even buy seed potatoes, I just planted the old leftover potatoes. Of course, it’s recommended you get seed potatoes from a reputable source to ensure they are free of disease and fungus. But the old timers just saved potatoes and planted the new crop off the last one.
These are red jackets. I like thin-skinned potatoes better, but it’s a matter of personal preference. In the past I’ve grown kennebecs, which are also really tasty.
After I dug the potatoes, actually… after the Hubs dug them (He’s the best tatter digger I know. Except for his dad.) I planted kale in the empty spot. Last year, my fall kale was amazing. (Probably just jinxed myself there, too). I harvested the last of it the weekend after New Year’s Day.
Kale is better in the fall, and after it’s been frosted on. Cole crops are actually better after a frost, because as the weather gets colder, they convert the water in the plant to sugar to protect them plant from damage. Sugar has a lower freezing point than water. This whole process makes the plant sweeter and more mild. Kale is my favorite vegetable, so I hope this year’s crop is just a good as last year’s.
I also planted more fall veggies, lettuce, beets, and radishes. It might seem a little early for those, but now’s the time. I enjoy spring and fall gardening more than summer vegetables because their are fewer pests and threats to the plants, the weather is better for working in the garden, and because it’s a challenge. There’s less daylight and the weather is cooler, making it harder to grow summer vegetables, so you have to grow things that do well in those conditions. Greens, lettuces, and radishes are ideal.
The hardest part is waiting for them to be ready.