Saturday, June 12, 2010

update : I'm alive, honest!

First... I feel I should apologize... I haven't been blogging as much lately, nor commenting on other blogs as much as I should. I still read all the posts, I just have been on the overworked side and therefore not very talkative.

That, and I just haven't had as much to say in general.

It's very hard to be interested in anything in these first few weeks of Texas summer. A kind of lethargy creeps into your bones with the heat, and it saps all your interest.

But, evidently I'm acclimatizing... this week I saw a lily-pond, and I took a few pics...

and just this morning, I went out into the garden and got a few home-grown potatoes.

Those are Yukon Gold, Adirondack Blue and Rose Gold. The Yukons seem to be doing the best...
I'm not getting a bumper crop, but considering the ease of harvesting, I'm more than happy... this is the Ruth Stout method of potatoe growing.
You throw the seed potatoes on the ground. You can cut them into 'sets' with 3 eyes each if you wanna, but I didn't wanna. They grow anyway...
Anyway, you throw them on the ground. Don't be digging in or anything.
Cover them with at least six inches of straw, hay or leaves. (I actually recommend more than six inches...)
Walk away, and in about 3 months, after the potatoes have grown, bloomed, and died down... pull back your mulch and there will be potatoes on the ground.
Pick them up, and eat them.
This is gardening I can deal with...
As I said, you're not getting a bumper crop, but you're not killing yourself digging in Texas hard-pan, so the trade off is worth it for me. Now, Seed potatoes at the nurseries can be expensive. Any potatoe that sprouts in the fridge can be sprouted and grown, although most are treated with a hormone that prevents or delays sprouting. They will still sprout, but they may produce in a lackidazical way... If you buy your potatoes for eating at a health food or organic store, they haven't been treated and they'll grow just fine in your garden.

And some of this crop will be saved for the next crop... here in Texas, we can plant again in September for a fall crop, in November for an early spring crop, (there's at least an 80 % chance they'll survive all winter, unless we have a hellacious freeze) and in January for a late spring crop, or in March for a crop now.
And here's a few more toms... pretty aren't they?


  1. Claude, Next go round I think I'll take your advice and go the Ruth Stout way with the potatoes. Mine are just not doing well. Guess I must be showing them to much "Love" (lol). Nice tomatoes crop coming on there also. - G

  2. I know Bob from Draco Gardens uses a very similar method as you do. It's the reason why he saves all his leaves from the fall--use the leaves to cover the potatoes so there's no digging, and then mulch after the harvest.

    I think I'm going to do potatoes this fall maybe--but I think I'm going to have to do some crazy potato box thingy. My mom found a news article about making a potato box and so now she's hell bent on knowing if it really works, which means that the husband and I get to build, plant, and harvest the potatoes. Then I should ship them all to my mom. That'll teach her.

  3. Beautiful potatoes and tomatoes, Claude! Don't worry about not commenting on the blog. Sometimes I don't feel like it either. At least you read other blogs. I don't even do that for days (weeks?) at a time. I think I will plant some more taters for a late fall/early winter crop. I've added some sweet taters this year, but since I've never grown them before I don't know quite what to expect. I thought I would plant and ask questions later--my usual method of operation.

  4. What an easy way to "plant" potatoes!!! Geeze...I thought you were kiding at first! :)

    Did you throw all those different types of potatos in one container and get all these? It is such a pretty harvest with all of the color! I will definately try this! I always have plenty of leaves around here!

  5. Julie... these were grown in the yard on the ground... I have a large patch that is covered with straw, about 8 inches. That's where all my veggies are planted this year... No weeds, not as much watering... it's really the only way I could possibly garden this year with my schedule.

  6. Ah Ha , Your alive , I disappeared for a while too. I was sad to restart life with only a handful of cuttings but am making it. Missouri has made it miserable to garden this year , and my tomatoes are just now starting to flower much less produce. I am glad to see you back.

  7. I just read all about Ruth Stout! I had never heard of her before. I found one of her books at our county lirary system and have placed it on hold. I am excited to read it for sure!

    How do you keep the straw from blowing away? Or is it just too heavy. Ruth also said not to wait for any particular planting season, but to go out and start right maybe I could just do that with the potatos and see what the hell happens!!! This is a fun it!!!

    Thanks for tellin about Ruth!!!

  8. Hey Claude! I just sent this post over to Mr. Brown Thumb to read. After re-reading this post I am wondering if you got your potatos planted this Sept or now, in November yet???