Monthly Archives: June 2017
In mid April, Eli and I planted Red Norlund potatoes that we got from Kansas City Community Gardens. We planted 60 potato seeds/wedges with hopes of improving on our past production.
I planted Red Norlund potatoes last year that I got from a local gardening store and my bounty was decent, but it was nothing to write home about. They were small we were only able to harvest 2 or 3 potatoes per plant.
This year was a different story altogether.
After 8 weeks in the ground, this year’s harvest was plentiful and the potatoes were much bigger than last year. Most plants yielded 4 or 5 potatoes each!
Quick recap: When I planted the potatoes in April, I placed each potato seed/wedge every 6 inches apart in the row with sprouts facing upright. Each row was about a 18 inches apart from each other and after they grew about 6 inches, I put dirt around the bases of each plant to create mounds that the potatoes could grow into.
As each plant continued to grow in height, I would continue to add dirt to the mounds until they stopped growing in height.
After a couple of weeks of no additional growth, the leaves started to turn yellow and wither which is a sign that it’s time to harvest.
I grabbed Eli and told him it was time to dig potatoes and we grabbed the shovels and bug spray and went to work.
The best part of the whole harvest was Eli’s enthusiasm to dig up potatoes. Eli has always liked to dig in dirt so asking him to help dig up potatoes was the easiest chore I’ve ever asked him to do.
He was more than willing to dig and his face lit up every time we found a potato in the sea of dirt.
All in all, we harvested around 250 potatoes that we plan to mash and bake for ourselves and to give away to family. Eli was excited to give a bag to Grandma who was visiting for the weekend.
Now that the potatoes are gone from prime garden real estate, I plan on planting pumpkins in their spot so I can have a pumpkin patch with Beanstalk Seeds Small Sugar Pumpkin seeds for Eli’s friends to visit during the Halloween season.
After a couple of weeks of watering and weeding, it was time for Eli and I to harvest the first batch veggies from our children’s garden and I can safely say round one was a success!
Prior to the harvest, I was concerned that we didn’t thin the radishes enough and that we didn’t protect the lettuce from all the critters roaming in our backyard. But thankfully the radishes were abundant and the lettuce was untouched by critters so there was no need for concern.
Speaking of critters, on the afternoon we harvested radishes, we caught some special guests hanging out in the garden. A family of foxes were feasting on our mulberry tree as we walked out to begin our harvest.
We’ve had foxes in our neighborhood for years but it’s been awhile since we’ve seen them so it was a nice unexpected treat to see them again for both of us. One kit spotted us and stared us down for a good 2 or 3 minutes before running away with the rest of them which provided a little extra entertainment for Eli.
Aside from the bounty that we picked, what I found most successful was the fact that my son got a kick out of harvesting. He showed genuine interest in the process and even said: “We’re like farmers picking our crops!”
Next up to harvest: beets, dragon tongue beans, cucumber, swiss chard, potatoes, and nasturtium flowers.