What better time to plant potatoes than St. Patrick's Day?
I know, I know…potatoes originated somewhere else, but they certainly have a heydey in Ireland!
So…this year, we planted potatoes…for the first time.
I was a little timid…
so I procrastinated getting the garden spot ready…
and procrastinated finding out exactly what we needed to do…
until it was almost too late. Ugh.
It was supposed to rain yesterday…and today…and tomorrow…and the next day…and the next day….
In our part of the country, St. Paddy's Day is considered the "perfect" time to plant potatoes. Since I really wasn't interested in planting them in the rain, I knew we had to get things going on Tuesday and Wednesday.
I'm so very green. Really.
It was more than just tilling up a little plot of land.
Silly me. It always is, isn't it?
Here are the steps that it took to be able to finally plant the potatoes today. Yep, you heard right. Today. So much for Tuesday or Wednesday…or even Thursday, for that matter!
- Till around the garden.
- Cover tilled area around the designated potato area with 4-8 sheets of open newsprint.
- Cover said newsprint with old leaves that have been piled in the middle of the garden space since this winter getting myself c.o.v.e.r.e.d in leaf mulch. Good times.
- Move the rest of the leaves out of the designated 10'X20' potato area to the rest of the garden space. Too bad I couldn't find the shovel, so a pitchfork had to do.
- Till the designated area without jacking up the newspaper boarder too much. Hubby did a great job at that!
- Cover with year old manure.
- Till designated area and jack up newspaper boarder a bit more.
- Take seed potatoes that were cut and dipped in wood ash Tuesday (because I naively thought that I would be planting potatoes on Tuesday, and I read that if you were planting the same day you were cutting that they needed to be dipped in wood ash or lye to prevent rotting. Again, HA!) and lay out the seed potatoes one foot apart in rows that are two feet apart.
- Cover the whole area with 10-12 inches of straw.
- Soak it all down.
- Wipe my brow, because we're done for the day…except for the lettuce and spinach that would be planted a few minutes later.
This would have been a great post to have step-by-step pictures. How I wish I had a photographer to follow me around sometimes! It's hard to do it and take pics at the same time. I'm seriously going to have to do better. At least I have a picture of the almost-finished-product!
In a few days we'll add a few more inches of straw and soak it down again. It's a good thing we love potatoes, because we could easily end up with well over 100 pounds of potatoes.
Now to figure out where to store them….
Tags:Food,Gardening,Healthy,Potatoes,preparedness,Self reliance,Straw Gardening