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Potatoes Coming out my Ears

April 9th, 2010

Come this fall I may have potatoes coming out my ears based on the amount I’ve planted so far this spring. I do love potatoes, they’re versatile, quick, delicious and healthy. So I decided since they’re supposed to be the most productive plant for the garden space they take up it would be worthwhile to plant a lot of potatoes. Another great thing about potatoes is that they don’t require any processing for storage (besides proper conditions).

According to The Worlds Healthiest Foods:

Potatoes are a very good source of vitamin C, a good source of vitamin B6, copper, potassium, manganese, and dietary fiber.

Potatoes also contain a variety of phytonutrients that have antioxidant activity. Among these important health-promoting compounds are carotenoids, flavonoids, and caffeic acid, as well as unique tuber storage proteins, such as patatin, which exhibit activity against free radicals. Read this article for in depth info about the healthfulness of potatoes.

My sister and I decided to split a potato sampler from Seed Savers this year. We got 2.5 lbs of 8 different varieties of potatoes to try. This is what we received:

La Ratta: Long prized by French chefs as a top quality fingerling. We cannot recommend this variety highly enough, an absolute delight to cook with. Long uniform tubers, yellow flesh with firm, waxy texture and a nice nutty flavor, holds together very well. Especially good for potato salad or as a boiled potato. Commands a high price both in the restaurant and fresh market trade. 100-120 days.

French Fingerling: This is a wonderful variety! The rose-colored skin covers its creamy yellow flesh. Very versatile and good for any style of preparation. Peeling is not necessary or recommended. Rumored to have been smuggled to America in a horse’s feedbag in the 1800s. 90-110 days.

All Blue: Deep blue skin, blue flesh with a thin white line just under the skin. A good choice for baking and frying, nice for making colorful chips. When boiled the color turns to a light blue. High mineral content, good keeper. 90-110 days.

All Red: (a.k.a. Cranberry Red) Red skin with delicate pale pink flesh. Low starch content makes this variety a good boiling potato for salads or any dish that requires potatoes to retain their shape. Considered the best producing red-fleshed, red-skinned variety. Introduced to SSE members by Robert Lobitz in 1984. Consistently a good producer at Heritage Farm, regardless of the weather conditions. 90-110 days.

Carola: Our most popular variety. Heavy yields of medium-sized, rounded oval potatoes with straw-beige skin. Excellent when harvested as young new potatoes. Creamy yellow flesh, relatively low starch, great for soups, boiling or fried. Maintains new potato qualities for months in root cellar. 95 days.

Purple Viking: Quickly gaining the reputation of a great tasting, slightly sweet, general purpose potato. A choice variety for any preparation , snow-white flesh is excellent for mashing. Average tubers are 3½ – 4″ in diameter, but in a good year it can produce even larger tubers. Excellent storage qualities. 80-100 days.

Red Gold:
Bred by Ag-Canada at the University of Guelph in 1970. Beautiful reddish orange skin with creamy, golden-yellow, semi-moist flesh. Excellent variety for baking, frying, mashing, steaming or roasting. Good disease resistance, best used fresh, not recommended for extended storage. 90-100 days.

Yukon Gold: A favorite among gardeners, consumers and chefs. Delicious flesh is drier than most other yellow varieties, perfect for baking and mashing. Yellow flesh appears to be buttered. Bred and selected by AgCanada and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food in 1966. Excellent yields and a great keeper. 80-90 days.


I spent Wednesday at my mom’s again this week planting most of these potatoes. If you remember last week we planted Yukon Gold and Kennebec potatoes. I’m hoping to have a pantry full of potatoes this fall. This year is a trial run of trying these varieties. I’ll probably narrow it down to a few different kinds next year.

Do you grow potatoes in your garden? Do you have a favorite kind?

32 Comments to “Potatoes Coming out my Ears”
  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by mark mile, Susy Morris. Susy Morris said: Potatoes Coming out my Ears http://goo.gl/fb/WG6uo #edible #potato […]

    Reply to Tweets that mention Planting potatoes | Chiot’s Run — Topsy.com's comment

  2. Teresa on April 9, 2010 at 7:49 am

    My favorites are Carola and Rose Gold from Wood Prarie Farm. They are an organic, family farm in Bridgewater, Maine.

    Reply to Teresa's comment

  3. Leigh on April 9, 2010 at 7:51 am

    Having just planted potatoes for the very first time, I found this post interesting. I have no idea what to expect in terms of need and harvest, so I just planted a bunch! I love your idea of getting a sampler pack.

    Reply to Leigh's comment

  4. kitchen table on April 9, 2010 at 7:51 am

    Lots of potatoes! I like it so much! I have planted a lot, too. But I hope they are as beautiful as yours.

    Reply to kitchen table's comment

  5. kitsapFG on April 9, 2010 at 8:19 am

    Potatoes are an important core crop in our garden since we don’t grow grains (other than some sweet corn) potatoes are a good calorie dense crop that produces high yeilds for the garden space used. I planted over 40 pounds of seed potatoes several weeks ago. You can read about it here:

    http://www.modernvictorygarden.com/apps/blog/show/3231568-the-great-potato-experiment-begins

    Reply to kitsapFG's comment

    • Susy on April 9, 2010 at 9:34 am

      That’s a lot of potatoes. I’d love to plant more, but I really don’t have enough space at the moment. Perhaps in the future.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  6. L2baker on April 9, 2010 at 8:39 am

    What a great post! I’m planning on planting some potatoes this year, maybe a sample pack like you said. I’ll get to it if it ever warms up in Wisconsin! :)

    Reply to L2baker's comment

  7. Sense of Home on April 9, 2010 at 9:13 am

    My favorite are red potatoes, they keep well and are not as dry as some varieties. I will be planting plenty of these this year, two weeks from now, if we get the shed moved and garden expanded by then.
    .-= Sense of Home´s last blog ..Zucchini Fritters =-.

    Reply to Sense of Home's comment

  8. Kelly on April 9, 2010 at 9:24 am

    We’re trying potatoes for the first time this year as well. Not many, but it’ll be an interesting experiment and learning experience.
    .-= Kelly´s last blog ..Weights and Measures =-.

    Reply to Kelly's comment

  9. Throwback at Trapper Creek on April 9, 2010 at 10:06 am

    Purple Viking is our go to potato – prolific, tasty, moist, and stores until June. I like them raw! We eat potatoes every day for 10 months of the year, truly our starch staple. I watch my friends try to grow grain – with poor results. It’s potatoes for us in our climate.
    .-= Throwback at Trapper Creek´s last blog ..The last cabbage =-.

    Reply to Throwback at Trapper Creek's comment

    • Susy on April 9, 2010 at 10:18 am

      Thanks for the tip, I’ll make sure to keep the purple viking for last since they store so well. So far my favorite kind is Kennebec from the few I’ve grown and tried. They make the best hash browns.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  10. Michelle on April 9, 2010 at 10:17 am

    I’ve never planted potatoes…but someday when I have more room I will. All of these varieties sound wonderful…and how nice to be able to split an order with your sister!!
    .-= Michelle´s last blog ..If life gives you lemons… =-.

    Reply to Michelle's comment

  11. Debbie on April 9, 2010 at 10:59 am

    This is my first year growing potatoes…and we got Organic Yukon Golds. I can hardly wait. I could easily incorporate potatoes into every meal.
    .-= Debbie´s last blog ..Get Outdoors Challenge – Day Four =-.

    Reply to Debbie's comment

  12. Kim on April 9, 2010 at 11:39 am

    I like Yukon Golds and red potatoes best. Eating potato leek soup as I type.

    Reply to Kim's comment

  13. MAYBELLINE on April 9, 2010 at 11:46 am

    I grew them very unsuccessfully last year. Some kind of fungus took over.

    Your post has made me hungry for potatoes. Yum.
    .-= MAYBELLINE´s last blog ..Espalier Pruning =-.

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

  14. kelsey on April 9, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    mmm potatoes are my favorite! my husband teases me about my ability to sit down to a meal of potatoes and nothing else!!!
    On the co-op farm im part of we grow a variety we call rose for its red skin and lovely rose flesh. it is the best potato ever and came to the farm by 4 little taters from a chef that needed a supplier!
    i love its flavour…. and its story!
    .-= kelsey´s last blog ..zig zagging and singing =-.

    Reply to kelsey's comment

  15. Rebecca @RootsAndWingsCo on April 9, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    I have never grown potatoes but have always wanted to!

    Those bowls, with the blue designs? My Mother has those exact bowls. They are what I ate my cereal in, my whole childhood. Beautiful and warm, to me!

    Rebecca of the R&W Gals
    .-= Rebecca @RootsAndWingsCo´s last blog ..Nana’s Stitched Canvas Infant Blocks =-.

    Reply to Rebecca @RootsAndWingsCo's comment

    • Susy on April 9, 2010 at 2:01 pm

      Yes, these are my mom’s bowls. We’ve been using them as long as I can remember.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  16. Dan on April 9, 2010 at 2:23 pm

    Sounds good! I’m trying a pink fleshed one as well this year, Alaska Sweetheart I think.

    Reply to Dan's comment

  17. lee on April 9, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    I planted just one potato in a pot :)

    Reply to lee's comment

  18. Sustainable Eats on April 9, 2010 at 3:06 pm

    I grew a few varieties last year but didn’t want to devote much of my small garden to them. This year I am growing them in recycled coffee bags to save on space. I’m growing bintje, la ratte, red fingerling, yukon gold and russets. I have some pictures of the coffee bags here: http://www.sustainableeats.com/2010/03/29/growing-in-coffee-bags/. They do need to be irrigated later in the summer but in my water logged ground right now it’s nice to have them up and draining, otherwise they start rotting quickly.
    .-= Sustainable Eats´s last blog ..Dark Days Week 20 =-.

    Reply to Sustainable Eats's comment

  19. Mija on April 9, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    I too am a big fan of the Kennebec. We really enjoyed growing and eating them for the first time last year.
    One quick question though…do the deer leave your potato plants alone? We want to expand into unfenced territory & I thought potatoes might be a good choice since the plants look so nice.

    Reply to Mija's comment

    • Susy on April 9, 2010 at 4:19 pm

      I haven’t had any trouble with the deer eating my potatoes.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  20. Jennifer on April 9, 2010 at 11:56 pm

    We picked up French Fingerling and Yukon, same as you. We’re also getting some sweet potatoes, yacon, and sunchokes this year for root crops. For other starches we’re trying quinoa and amaranth. I suppose we’ll never get bored with side dishes!
    .-= Jennifer´s last blog ..Life’s Magic =-.

    Reply to Jennifer's comment

  21. Janene on April 13, 2010 at 1:56 am

    We had a huge garden when I was growing up. We tried potatoes for a little while, but we gave up on them, because every time we dug them up, it turned out the bugs had gotten to them first and there wasn’t any potato left for us. Bummer. So we grew other things instead! I will be anxious to see how yours come out, as I’d be willing to try them myself in my own garden….

    Reply to Janene's comment

    • Susy on April 13, 2010 at 8:51 am

      I’ve read planting beans with your corn helps with the bugs. I’ll let you know how it goes.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  22. nic @ nipitinthebud on April 14, 2010 at 4:09 am

    I love reading about all the different varieties available. I’ve not heard of any of yours though except Yukon Gold. But then you probably haven’t heard of any of the ones that will be coming out of my ears too come summer http://nipitinthebud.wordpress.com/2010/03/27/one-potato-two-potato/
    I’m really looking forward to tasting some of the British Heritage varieties and the two purple varieties – Gloucester Black Kidney and Peruvian Purples.

    Reply to nic @ nipitinthebud's comment

  23. Enjoying the Harvest | Chiot's Run on July 22, 2010 at 6:51 am

    […] spring. We figured we may as well use them, so we planted them earlier this spring when we planted my sampler pack. They produced over 50lbs of potatoes! When you spend an hour harvesting potatoes you get really […]

    Reply to Enjoying the Harvest | Chiot’s Run's comment

  24. scott on July 29, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    My potatoes have done great this year! I have already pulled out around 100 lbs! The all reds are coming out tonight! Hope your doing well along with your potatoes

    Reply to scott's comment

  25. Growing Heirloom Potatoes | Chiot's Run on August 17, 2010 at 4:48 am

    […] I also harvested the ‘Carola’, ‘All Red’, ‘All Blue’, and ‘Purple Viking’ that we planted in her garden. We were quite impressed with the yields, I think the total weighed in around 40 pounds for these […]

    Reply to Growing Heirloom Potatoes | Chiot’s Run's comment

  26. Potatoes, Potatoes, Potatoes | Chiot's Run on September 10, 2010 at 4:46 am

    […] you remember this spring I was talking about having potatoes coming out my ears if all my potatoes did well. I finally harvested all the potatoes from the garden with the […]

    Reply to Potatoes, Potatoes, Potatoes | Chiot’s Run's comment

  27. […] the fingerling potatoes produced the highest yield. Here are a few photos of my Terrific Tubers. (Here’s a list of the varieties I grew this […]

    Reply to Sunday Photos…Terrific Tubers « Not Dabbling In Normal's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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