Sunday, January 6, 2013

The Stanthorpe Potato Patch

Two visits ago we helped plant this potato patch in Brian and Freya's garden in Stanthorpe. Now they have grown so much that some of them were ready to harvest. We're hoping the rest can come out next time we visit Stanthorpe, which is a 3 hour drive away from where we live in Brisbane.
Thomas in the potato patch in Stanthorpe
potatoes fresh from the ground lightly steamed are very tasty
a potato flower
After the plant flowers and starts to wilt and die, its time to harvest the potatoes. We got two small bunches of potatoes while we were there. I don't think I've ever eaten potatoes so fresh, we pulled them out of the ground one afternoon and ate them that night for dinner. And they were delicious!
as the flowers die and wilt, the plant is ready to harvest
Besides the potato patch, Brian also has some potatoes growing inside some old tyres piled on top of each other. A set of 4 old car tyres will suffice and produce a large amount of harvest. Brian cut off some of the tyre with a sharp knife so there was little overlap. You plant the potatoes in the bottom, then as the leaves pop up you cover it lightly with mulch material. This produces clean potatoes with not much dirt to be removed. As a tyre fills up, you add another tyre on top. This encourages the plant to produce more potatoes along its roots in the deeper tyres.
mulching on top of some potatoes in a vertical patch made of recycled tyres

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