Tuesday, 24 June 2014

I Should Have Waited

I don't have very much patience. As soon as I saw other people harvesting their potatoes, I wanted to harvest mine too. What's nicer than that first harvest of home grown potatoes?

The first containers I planted up this year was on the 16th of March. They were started off in the greenhouse as the weather was so wet around this time, but unfortunately, they didn't seem to want to get going and it took them some time to sprout any foliage. These are a first early, Arran Pilot and as you can see, they never really recovered and I've even seen slugs clinging to the greenery.


I plant these buckets with three seed potatoes. These were the haulms I removed before emptying out the container, not very much to show at all.


Lack of foliage meant that I hadn't raised my expectations. Just as well as this was the total haul, just 85 grams.


They weren't going to feed us so I decided to empty another container. This one is Anya, a second early. It had a little more foliage, but there was still lots of bare soil where I'd expect to see more.


There were lots more potatoes in this second container than the first one, but they were very small. I don't think you can guage just how small they are in the photo, but in total they weighed 100 grams. I should have left this container as I'm sure they'd have increased in size had they had more time to grow.


I decided to empty one more container. Back to the Arran Pilot's again, this one was planted up on the 6th of April. I could already tell that the foliage was much better so I hoped that the yield would be better too.


Still not a huge haul, but weighing 410 grams, it was better than the previous two.


There were enough to go with our roast pork dinner last night and I can report that they were delicious. Those little ones were just the right size to pop straight in the mouth.


Now that I've satisfied my craving, I shall let the rest of the containers grow on before emptying any more out.

The strawberry harvest is going well though, there's plenty to pick on each visit to the plot and they taste scrummy.


Just in time for Wimbledon. (Only joking, I'm not a fan).

34 comments:

  1. Perhaps it is not quantity but quality with regard to the potatoes. They look delicious.

    Strawberries look beautiful..........going away with strawberry envy. Mine have been hopeless this year, birds, rabbits and everything else seem to be eating them. I have actually given up :(

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    1. They certainly tasted delicious. A few more from each container would have been very welcome though. I'm really pleased with the strawberries. Having taken this plot on at the back end of last year, we didn't know how the plants would perform but I'm quite happy with them so far.

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  2. There's nothing like the first crop of new potatoes. I don't blame you for lifting some to see how they're doing and harvesting enough for a family meal. The strawberries look delicious too!

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    1. I got a bit impatient, but now I've had a taste I'll wait for the next batch to grow a bit more before harvesting them. The strawberries are so sweet and juicy, absolutely delicious.

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  3. Don't beat yourself up, your strawberries are fabulous, ours are pathetic.......nearly a mouthful each lol. We are planning a very large strawberry bed next year as it's hubbies favourite fruit.

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    1. I look forward each year to harvesting strawberries, but having taken on this plot at the back end of last year, we didn't know how the plants would perform so we're really pleased to be getting such a good crop. Sorry to hear that yours aren't doing so well, but I'm sure you'll remedy that next year.

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  4. It's a funny year with our potatoes. After our last visit some rows have blight, some look to be growing very well and are unaffected by blight and some - well they just aren't growing very well at all even though they have no signs of blight.

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    1. It's such a shame about the blight. Perhaps I'm doing the right thing lifting them, even though they're small, before blight hits. There's loads in at the plot this year too so I hope they don't succumb.

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  5. Oh well maybe not a big harvest Jo but I'm sure that you appreciated them even more for it. I got a shock today when I had a little delve in and around my spuds. What I thought were Belle de Fontenay have produced red spuds. I think that I must have messed up on my labels. Enjoy those strawberries :)

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    1. They were the first harvest this year and the first harvest is always tastier than all the rest. I'm always mixing my labels up, either that or missing them completely. I'm sure your Belle de Fontenay will turn up somewhere, probably where you least expect them. We're definitely enjoying the strawberries.

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  6. I know what you mean about the urge to dig up some potatoes ASAP! Fortunately I have enough pots of them to be able to harvest some very young (too early, probably) whilst still being able to let some mature fully. I don't want to store large quantities of them. I want to eat them straight away!

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    1. To be honest, I don't know how I've lasted this long. I'm the same, plenty of containers on the go, and this year I've got loads in the allotment too, giving them a go again now that I've got a new plot to see if I can avoid slug damage here, we'll see.

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  7. I think my first earlies are due for harvesting next week, but there still doesn't appear to be much foliage. The problem here is trees casting too much shade. I wonder if it's worth me waiting a bit longer too.

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    1. Perhaps you could just have a feel before you dig them up, you should be able to tell if there's anything worth harvesting. I should have done the same in hindsight. The rest of the container potatoes I've planted look to be doing well so I hope I get some bigger harvests from them.

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  8. We use the first potatoes as a starter, covered in butter and eaten out of the saucepan! Your strawberries look delicious xxx

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    1. I don't blame you, yum yum. The strawberries are delicious, I wish I knew which variety they are.

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  9. Oh Jo what a shame, I've got my pots mixed up so I have no idea what varieties I'm harvesting. Perhaps they will bulk up for you over the next couple of weeks.

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    1. All is not lost, I've got lots more still to harvest and I'm sure they'll do better. I think it's because these early ones were planted up too early, I don't think it always pays to be too quick off the marks.

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  10. Like has already been said its all about quality rather than quantity. And it they taste delicious then thats all that matters.

    X x

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    1. I suppose that's true, especially with these early ones. I'm sure the rest will bulk up a bit if they're left for a while.

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  11. It is so difficult growing potatoes isn't it. At least with things like carrots you can pull one and if it is tiny you can leave the rest, but with potatoes you are kind of either in or out aren't you! Glad to know that they tasted good though, homegrown definitely have the flavour edge don't they! Happy strawberries!! xx

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    1. Very true. I'm just pleased that I've got lots more containers left so all is not lost. Home grown certainly taste much nicer than shop bought, it's the freshness.

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  12. Great harvest Jo! I only dream growing potato on my home garden. The weather us not suitable for this plant.

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    1. I can't imagine not being able to grow potatoes, it's a staple in our house. There's so many different varieties too that it's quite fun trying different kinds.

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  13. Because of the short growing period first early potatoes should be left as long as possible so that the yield and size is as good as it can be.
    The strawberries look good, and I'm not a Wimbledon fan either. Flighty xx

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    1. I know, I just don't have the patience though. It didn't help that they didn't get a very good start either what with the wet conditions at the start of the year. I have friends who apply for tickets to Wimbledon every year, and they're usually successful, I can't see the attraction myself.

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  14. The potatoes cleaned up well. I was thinking a bit more time for them to grow. The strawberries look totally delicious. I've mostly herbs to harvest at the minute and some salad crops.

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    1. The Anya's would have definitely benefitted from extra time to grow, but I'm not sure about the Arran Pilots, especially the first container I planted up. They didn't get off to a good start and never really got going. I'm hoping the rest of them are better. I don't grow much lettuce but I had a few on the go but the slugs have eaten the lot over the last couple of days. It's a good job we're not huge salad eaters otherwise I'd have been totally fed up.

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  15. I probably ought to dig mine up soon then too? I do have masses of foliage on mine so maybe I will have a good crop? No strawberries here yet tho'

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    1. You might be best having a little feel under the soil first to see if there's anything there. Some of my potatoes had flowered, which indicates that the tubers are swelling. If you've got lots of foliage, you're probably better waiting until it's dying down which gives an indication that they're ready, though I can never wait to taste the first harvest.

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  16. I'm growing potatoes in containers for the 1st time this year. The foliage has been decimated by slugs and snails and I can't remember when I planted them either! Mine are main crop (Pink Fir Apple) and haven't really flowered yet so I'm going to leave them a little longer, I think!

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    1. I can't remember slug damage on my container grown potatoes ever before, yet I've found slugs hanging off the foliage munching away this year. I'm growing Pink Fir Apple too but as they're a main crop, they'll need to be grown on for quite a while yet before I harvest them. It's the first time I'm growing this variety so I'm looking forward to tasting them.

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  17. I have often been tempted to empty containers in the past too.....but wow, they do look delicious, sometimes it quality not quantity that's important.Lucky you with all those strawberries, I haven't had one yet!xxx

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    1. They were delicious. I have plenty more containers left yet so it doesn't really matter that it wasn't a huge haul. Hope your strawberries ripen soon, we're collecting loads at the moment.

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