I have never grown or canned potatoes before, but I have heard it is one of the easiest things to can! SO I was super excited to give it a try. The canning process was actually relatively easy, but the research and decision making process was much more intense than I had thought!!
My first hurdle: When do I dig up my potatoes?? Everyone was saying..."and then you harvest your potatoes.". Some resources said "when the leaves begin to wilt" and others say "when they plant dies back".
I have about 16 potato plants and several of them looked dead dead and several of them do not look like they are even starting to wilt. I had decided to dig up a couple plants (partially out of excitement and partially out of extreme curiosity!) but only found 4 potatoes in 1 plant and 6 in the other...after much digging around (which was fun!) to make sure I was getting everything!. So I called my dear friend Nicole (which I have called about this same issue several times this season already!) to ask her when do the plants look "dead enough". Nicole is my "potato expert", although I do not think she would consider herself a potato expert, she is a lot more experienced at it than I am! Nicole convinced me to leave the other plants until they are completely died off and we will hope for more than 4-6 per plant! Nicole plants her potatoes in bushel baskets and it makes it alot easier come harvest time because you just overturn the bushel basket and there you have it!! You know for sure this way that you are getting all of the potatoes!!
These are 2 of the plants I dug up: 1 looks really dead and the other was having some wiltage!
- Homestead Roots
- My tremendously supportive husband & I have 3 wonderful children, 1 dog, 12 laying hens, 2 dairy goats, 3 bee hives, and a 2000 sq foot vegetable garden on a small 1/4 acre lot in the city. In the center of it all is our small 1,000 sq foot house purchased in 2008 as a foreclosure that we fully renovated to host our growing family, home school adventures, and small home business (CozyLeaf.com). We have a desire to learn a path to self sufficiency finding ways to be good stewards of the resources God has given us. We want to learn to live with less as we laydown roots to our little homestead.