Anxious Potato Plants/early gardening

     IMG_0013  The nice warm weather that March can bring makes one anxious to get started with plants and vegetables for the garden.

These anxious potato plants are a prime example.                                                                  For my area of the country starting anything that soon means that the plants will be ready to go outdoors too early.  Yet how tempting it always is.

                                                   Many of the seed potatoes that were in the basement were like these anxious potato plants.

They had grown long eye sprouts so I decided to give them (a few anyway) a chance to get a head start.  There was more than enough good dirt to work with and some fine gravel was dug out of the creek out back.

Four and five gallon tubs were easily accessible from one of the pole barns where they are kept for use in the annual potato harvest that Southern tier Antique tractor club does each fall. ( the club with the help of many local volunteers/come harvest time/picked over 40,000 lbs of potatoes this past fall).

potato harvest 2016
some of the many volunteers

All that is harvested is donated to the food bank, Chow and two or more area churches.

     After collecting a few buckets some time earlier to get them ready for a planned container garden I painted several.

Then adding some of the creek gravel to the bottom and the good soil over that the tubs were ready.  Potatoes were cut so that each piece had an eye sprout then the pieces were planted in the tubs. The (now) garden tubs were placed in a corner of that basement that I use as my art and projects studio to see if they would grow.

The sprouts did come alive and grow. And they made every effort to stretch toward the window in front of them.

They were in a hurry from the start and I was pleased to see that they were doing something.

Not enough light came through that window to really give the plant’s strength to produce. But they were indeed growing.

One of my activities to provide extra light that would be helpful with the plant’s development was to move three or more at a time to the landing just outside the door. This was work and hampered some by my having had bypass surgery a month earlier. Check out the post Doctor Visit to craft project for more on that interesting experience.

The light helped some of the plants, others not so much.

   Some helpful insights to any reading that are new to gardening.

Though the potato plants seen here did keep growing it appears that from lack of enough sun ( in the right intensity) the plants produced little to no potatoes. I did get a few that were about the size of chic peas. Tasted good when cooked but way too much labor.  Negative no just needs worked out better.

 

 

 

I would enjoy hearing from you.