Sunday, September 9, 2012

Potato harvest

This morning we decided to harvest the potato patch. All of the plants had basically died back. We likely could have left them in the ground another couple of weeks but there are many autumn projects awaiting attention so we decided to haul them out now when I had some time.

I dug and Jess picked and we had the bed (about 200 square feet) done in about 70 minutes. There were roughly 20 plants (a couple I'd dug earlier in the season), a mix of russet and blue caribe.

In the end, we had about 150lbs of potatoes. Not bad for $15 bucks worth of seed (so 10 cents a pound) and a bit of hoeing during the year. I keep thinking I should turn under more lawn to grow more potatoes--especially the useless 2000 square feet of boulevard grass on the south side of the house.

The russet were good sized and no sign of scab (which is good--I can then bring potatoes back to this bed in a couple of years). The blue caribe were crazy big. The picture below shows Jess (who is about five feet tall). Have a look at the potato closest to the camera in great-grandma's old steel tub.

We're also slowly harvesting the tomatoes (mostly for eating) and cucumbers and carrots. Each day I also go out and pull off the ripe bean pods and shuck them and leave them to dry. I think we'll do more beans next year.

We finally finished preserving the crab apples we picked down the lane. I made four jars of spiced crab apples (which turned out alright given this was my first try) and another three litres of crab apple jelly. About the only remaining canning I plan to do are high bush cranberry jelly--maybe this week if I can find the time.

I'm pretty chuffed that the only fruit we bought (u-picks) for canning this year were raspberries and strawberries. Swapping picking rights for future produce with the fellow down the lane was been quite useful (giving me an outlet for the seasonal glut from the garden).

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