When Should I Start Digging my Potatoes?
Irish Potatoes are one of the most maintenance-free crops, but the big question is, how do I know when my potatoes are ready? Digging potatoes is the hardest part about growing a potato plant. You will know it is the right time, though when the vines start dying back, and the weather is consistently warm and dry. If you dig your potatoes up and there is no disease set up on them and only one or two rodded potatoes, you know you tug them up at the correct time.
Another thing to check for to determine if it was a good harvest is to see if they are all consistent in size. For differing varieties, this will change, but if you have the same variety planted on a row, then you want all of them to be about the same size. If you have some that were small in one area that may be a sign of poor soil or lack of water, you want to check this out, so you are ready for the next time you plant.
Making sure that you have good potatoes to dig up, starts with your soil. The best potato growing soil is excellent and sandy, leaving room for your potato roots. It doesn’t stop there though potatoes aren’t complicated and will be well worth your money as long as you make sure to take care of them once they are in the ground. You can do this by keeping plenty of water on them, fertilizing when needed, and hilling them a couple of times.
The Best Potato Varieties to Grow
Digging Potatoes is all fun and games but you can’t get there if you don’t pick the perfect variety to plant first. Potato plants come in all shapes and sizes, and it is always fun to grow the right mix of all of them. Our four most successful varieties of potatoes are listed below.
- Red Norland is the first to pop up out of all the potatoes in your vegetable garden. This potato is a hybrid of the traditional red potato. Still, it has a darker red skin that has a high disease resistance to scab, Rhizoctonia, and potato virus. The Red Norland can be grown in many different climates and produces heavy yields. Its white flesh is excellent for steaming and boiling, which makes it perfect for a low country boil!
- The Yukon Gold potato is probably our tastiest potato and the next one to come out of the garden with a 100-day maturity rate. Its tan skin and light brown flecks with a bright yellow flesh will leave you no need to butter these melt-in-your-mouth treats. Yukon Gold Potato produces heavy yields of medium to large-sized potatoes that are slightly elongated. This variety is known for its versatility in the kitchen for frying, baking, mashing, roasting, and more!
- This next variety produces potatoes with dark, reddish-purple skins and a vibrant, deep purple flesh. The Adirondack Blue Potato is purple in flesh and rich in antioxidants. The crop is medium to large with about an 85-day maturity rate. The Adirondack Blue potato keeps its color when cooked, leaving you tons of fun in the kitchen making blue mashed potatoes or potato salad!
- Our German Butterball is a late-season variety, blue-tag certified, and has excellent storage capability. It has a golden-yellow flesh that will melt in your mouth! When given the time to reach full size, they are delicious but also work great as baby potatoes for canning or pot roasts.
Watch the video below to see Greg dig these four varieties up. If one of these doesn’t seem to be quite what you are looking for, check out our website to see all the potatoes we offer.