Friday, August 14, 2009

From a weedy garden

You can get lots of good things if you check under those weeds!

I dug up the Yukon Gold potatoes several days ago, since the vines had died. I'm just now digging up the regular white potatoes; I'll dig a few each morning while it's still cool. I'm sharing them with my daughter's family, since we don't have a cellar. Cliff is allowing me to store them in the back of his shop, but I won't say he really likes having them there.

Remember the one sweet potato sprout I set out? It's taking lessons from the butternut squash and trying to take over the entire garden. In the foreground you can see the few turnips I planted on July 25 (no, not the VERY foreground... that's crabgrass); I keep trying to turn the sweet potato vine away from them, but it insists on encroaching. I'm anxious to see if I get any sweet potatoes from this selfish vine. I'll have to wait quite awhile yet, since it won't be time to dig them up until there's a threat of frost. Somehow I don't think my turnips have a chance, unless of course they happen to like being totally shaded by vines.

Poor little turnips.

I've raised sweet potatoes before, but I really don't know a lot about them. So of course I turned to the Internet to find this information:

    Planting the Slips

  1. The slips should be planted 12 to 18 inches apart in well-fertilized furrows a month after all chance of frost has passed. Furrows should be at least 4 to 5 inches deep. Once the furrows are planted, compost and humus should be ridged up around the slips to a depth of around 10 inches for optimal growth.
  2. Growing the Sweet Potatoes

  3. Sweet potato tubers will begin to form after the roots of the slip have become established. Each slip will produce several potatoes; depending upon the room each plant has, each potato can weigh up to several pounds. Sweet potatoes are drought-resistant and love hot, dry summers in which the nutrients gathered by the leaves of the plant are fed to the growing tubers.
  4. Harvesting the Sweet Potato

  5. Sweet potatoes are dug--generally using a pitchfork and in small gardens--just before the first expected frost of the season. The potatoes are left on top of the ground for several hours to begin the curing process. They are then placed in a shed or barn where the temperature remains between 75 and 80 degrees for 10 to15 days. They will then keep for months in an environment where the temperature is around 50 degrees. Most home garages are perfect for storing potatoes.
I'm making the following picture the kind on which you can click to make larger, because I don't know how well the hummingbird will show up.

Sadie was looking out the window beside my computer desk and a hummingbird decided to tease her for five minutes or so. It was driving her crazy, that tiny creature buzzing near her nose just on the other side of the screen!


I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

Yukon Gold potatoes are so good! I know you'll enjoy those for sure. Those little hummers are all around here too. I was doing some weeding the other evening and one was buzzing right around my head. I was disturbing his spot in the flower bed. It is almost the end of the gardening season and it seems like it just started.

madcobug said...

Those potatoes look good. I bet Cliff doesn't mind eating the ones you store in his workshop. You can tell Sadie is watching that hummer. Helen

Amy said...

You're able to have the windows open?! It's still ridiculously hot here, so our A/C stays on.... We did have a wild storm come through the other day, but after that, it was like it never happened... said...

Your potatoes look so good! You really have a green thumb when it comes to growing stuff!! Hugs Grams

Muhd Imran said...

That looks like a lot of work but so worth every effort!

Looking out at the greenery is already heavenly, you get to see the tease right under your nose is just awesome... well, Sadie's nose that is.

Have a great weekend too!

DesLily said...

goodness the lady grows lots of potatoes!! how do you make the photo clickable??

Jess said...

My cats are like that to sit and watch out the windows, but they charge the window after bird and bugs....did Sadie not jump at the window?

We were so afraid one night that we shut the window because one of our cats was jumping so hard at the screen we thought it would break and she would fall out! LOL

Love, Jess