Monday, October 13, 2014

Digging Potatoes

Digging potatoes is heavy work and it is kicking my butt.

I finished a row yesterday and it was very slow going.  I called in some help.  V-Max came to the rescue.  I paid him in .38 Special wadcutters and half the potatoes we dug.  We were able to dig two rows in about two-and-a-half hours.  It goes much faster when I can stay standing and not have to put tools down and pick tools up with each hill.

We took a break after digging the first row.  I microwaved three different kinds of potatoes for him to try.  He tried Spartan Splash, Missaukee and Gold Rush, just a slice of potato with a sprinkle of salt.  He expressed a clear preference for Spartan Splash, so that is what we dug for him.  Part of what people seem to like is the texture.  One person described it as melting under his molars, like creamy mac-and-cheese.

This is what two rows worth of potatoes look like.
Close-up with my foot in the picture to provide a size reference.
I cannot remember if I have 14 rows or 17 rows.  I am guestimating about 70 pounds of potatoes per row.  Two rows a day will get it done.  My current bottleneck is that I am a wimp and this is knocking the snot out of me.


  1. Joe, you probably told us in a past post, but are those rows fifty foot long? That is a really nice batch per row.

  2. Your memory is pretty good. They are sixty feet long.

    The new garden is about 70 feet by 90 feet. That 70 feet must accommodate turn-around room for the tiller on each end of the row and a path along one edge to move equipment and other traffic.

    Between the two issues (turn around room and traffic lane) I lose 10 feet.

    Regarding production, I did way better than I deserved. We had perfect rain. And although my weed and bug control was minimal, my timing was exquisite. In retrospect, It would be way easier digging them if I had done even a halfway job of hilling them earlier.

    Thanks for reading. And, especially, thanks for taking the time for commenting.