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Potatoes, Potatoes, Potatoes

September 10th, 2010

If 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 ‘Kennebec’ being the last ones. I was pleasantly suprised at the size of these potatoes. When I planted them this spring only about half of the potatoes came up, so I bought some more and planted them, about a month after the original ones were planted. The original ones sized up into HUGE tubers, with the ones planted later being about the size of our ‘Yukon Gold’ potatoes. I can’t imagine how many pounds I would have gotten if they had all started from the beginning.

I ended up with a harvest of around 200 pounds of potatoes for the winter. Of course I’m giving some to my mom since we planted most of them in her garden, but she also gave me some of her ‘Yukon Gold’ potatoes. I’m very pleased with our harvest, the best part is that potatoes need nothing but to be stored in a cardboard box in the basement, no canning, no freezing, no time/energy used for preservation.

A couple weeks before harvesting the ‘Kennebec’ potatoes, my mom and I harvested the fingerling potatoes. I wasn’t sure how the fingerlings would do, I assumed they would produce a smaller yield, but I was amazed when they outproduced every other kind of potato we planted. ‘La Ratta’ was the most productive potato in the garden, and I’m quite happy since they’re quite delicious and the perfect size I think, no cutting required, just wash, toss with olive oil and roast. I planted 2 varieties:

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.

I will definitely be growing fingerling potatoes again, especially ‘La Ratta’ since they were the most productive. I’ll also be definitely grow: ‘Kennebec’, ‘All-Red’, and ‘Purple Viking’. I’ll probably try a few new varieties next year since that’s one of the reasons I garden, to try new things. I’m sure that my garden will always have a nice space devoted to the lowly potato.

Do you grow potatoes? How was your harvest this year?

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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.