The Potager

The Potager

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Seriously? Another rainy Saturday?  I guess the upside is that there's a whole lot less watering for me to do.
The radishes planted in March are popping up. They are very small.
But it is exciting to see color in the Potager.
The ones planted on the other side of this box are not popping out. Either this variety just grew small or the floods last week washed off some of the soil exposing them.
Either way, they won't do much more once they've exposed themselves like this, so we may have tiny radishes with our Easter dinner.
The peas are sending out their little tendrils looking for something to wrap around. Once they find it they will begin to climb and cover the tee-pees.
 Yesterday morning I managed to get some pine straw mulch around the strawberries in the garden. I have seen a lot of southern gardening blogs talking about pine straw mulch and researched it. It's just pine needles. I live in the pine barrens. Hello! Why haven't I heard of this before? I used needles from the white pine tree, because they are softer and prettier than our scrub pine needles. They will add acidity to the soil, but I hear strawberries like that.
The extra strawberry plants I put in the pot are doing really well. They are growing in pure compost!

The asparagus is also doing great. Very thin stalks, but they look healthy and vigorous. Hopefully they will thicken up a bit next year and I can steal a few. Fresh from the garden asparagus is such a treat!

Outside the garden in the future perennial/herb bed, hubby and I are trying a potato box.

Hubs made a box out of cedar with tall stakes and 6 inch sides.

I then put compost in and put in some organic potatoes that had sprouted. I know everyone says you should always buy seed potatoes, but I'm really cheap. If this works, we probably will in the future.

I then covered the potatoes with more compost and waited.

And waited.

And waited.

Soon the ground began to heave up and crack in several places and we knew the potatoes were growing.
And here they are! The potatoes are growing!

What will happen is they will grow to about 8 inches tall and hubby will add another 6 inch box around them, which I will again fill with a dirt, compost, peat moss mixture, leaving only 2 inches of potato leaves showing.

And that will be repeated until we reach the top of the stakes.

Inside the box, potatoes will grow all along the covered stems.
When the potato leaves die back, we will unscrew one side and scoop out the potatoes!

I have never had a fresh dug potato, but I've heard that they are sweet and very different from the storage potatoes we are all used to eating.

Since these are outside the Potager, we have covered them with wire fencing to protect them from the deer.

"There is little chance that meteorologists can solve the mysteries of weather until they gain an understanding of the mutual attraction of rain and weekends."  ~Arnot Sheppard

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