oscar the grouchy potato

I’ve had a slacker galvanized garbage can hanging out in my shed since I moved in, so I thought I would put it to work this year.  Drilling drainage holes in the bottom was a tiny challenge, but my wonderful neighbor had the right tool for the job, as usual, and Retrogrouch took care of the pickles-for-drill bit exchange.

Potatoes grow in all kinds of media, so I planted ‘Desiree’ seed potatoes atop about 6 inches of high-quality compost with a cup or so of low-nitrogen organic fertilizer, then topped them with another 3-4 inches of compost.  As the potatoes grow, I’ll add more, covering the stems all the way up to the leaves so little potato babies can form and grow along the stem.  In the fall, after undoubtedly pulling off a few new potatoes from time to time, I’ll dump out the compost and reuse it on the flower beds, and the crop of potatoes will be right there and ready for curing.

I also planted some ‘Red Gold’ potatoes in a smaller container, a recycled plastic nursery tub.  The thought is that I’ll be able to move around the containers if I decide they need more sun or shade.  I really like the idea of freeing up another part of my beds, as well.   We’ll see what happens!

Peas and alliums and strawberries and artichokes are growing nicely.  I’m going to hope for another break in the rain so I can get in my lettuce.  Not sure why so many people are buying tomato plants this early, but I’m hoping they all have greenhouses.  I did succumb to the charms of two new ‘Attar of Rose’ scented geraniums to replace the ones I lost in the freeze; I already used one leaf in my freshly made rhubarb simple syrup.  And thus, spring begins!


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