Potato Harvest (and why everyone should grow potatoes)

I've come to the realization that everyone should grow potatoes.  Here's why:
  1. most of the time you've got old, sprouting, squishy potatoes going bad in your kitchen that you would normally throw out or compost. So this is the ultimate in thrift!!
  2. potatoes are on the "dirty dozen" list for most pesticide residue, so they are important to buy organic. Or grow your own!!
  3. potatoes thrive even in bad soil
  4. potatoes don't need tons of water (so I can put them out of the reach of the sprinklers and they'll survive the summer)
  5. potatoes don't seem to care about the weather either (at least not in Portland Metro area, zone 7 ish). I started some in February- they just took longer to grow.
  6. home grown potatoes taste more potato-ey than store ones... sooooo delicious!

Favorite ways to enjoy home grown potatoes: roasted, mashed, potato salad, in soup, or on salad!

Method for Home Grown Potatoes:
Find old squishy and/or sprouting potatoes. Any kind will do (yukon gold, red, russet, fingerling, purple).

Cut into chunks, preferably with at least one eye/sprout per chunk.

Place chunks in soil.  I use a deep bucket. Fill the bucket 1/3 of the way with soil. Spread potato chunks out. Pour in 3-5 more inches of soil over the top. Spread remaining potato chunks out.  Pour remaining soil, to cover by at least 5 inches.

Let the potatoes grow. Don't worry, it will take a while for them to tunnel up and for the green shoots ot appear at the surface.

Let them continue growing until the greens turn yellow and start to die. It doesn't matter if they flowered or not.

Dig up the potatoes. Rinse and enjoy.
 Note: we grew this amount of potatoes (8-10 lbs?) in two large buckets (approximately 9 cubic feet). These were from store bought yukon gold, red and purple potatoes that had gone bad in our kitchen!

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