Tuesday, September 18, 2007
I dug my potatoes well over a few weeks ago, but tonight we had mashed potatoes with meat loaf for dinner and it occurred to me as I was peeling spuds...I had not posted about my potato harvest yet! So here it is.
This northern Minnesota climate and soil is nicely adapted for growing potatoes. We lived for a short time in a town in northwestern Minnesota, and one of the biggest industries there was commercial potato growing for customers like McDonald's. Here I grow potatoes in raised beds because of our extremely rubble-laden soil, courtesy of glacial drift. You'd burn out a garden tiller fast in this soil!
As the picture shows, I don't grow look alike Russets. I get my seed potatoes from Milk Ranch Potatoes in Colorado, who provide the best variety of tubers at the best prices. This year my goal was to try potatoes that were supposed to store well, and be disease and scab resistant.
Clockwise, sort of, from the top: Red Pontiac, which produced this one abnormally softball-sized tater. Dakota Rose, the really red looking one. That name sounds kind of like a prairie lady of the night! Continuing aroung the outer circle we have Banana fingerling potatoes, and Rose Finn Apple. I don't know if I'll grow fingerlings again; I like big potatoes that you can cut up and peel.
Completing the outer circle we have Carola, a yellow skinned yellow fleshed potato, and Purple Viking, which has striking purplish skin and snow white flesh. Inside the circle from left to right, is Desiree, pink skin yellow flesh, and German Butterball, an all yellow potato. I was trying to find a substitute this year for Yukon Gold, which, despite its market popularity, does not produce all that well. I think I like Carola, because it didn't get any scab and it seemed to produce more big tubers than German Butterball. Desiree made some nice shaped tubers, but I think I used most of the big ones to make mashed potatoes tonight. As far as taste and texture, I'm not that discerning. I can't really tell the difference, although I do know homegrown tastes better.
We probably have enough potatoes to last through January or so.