Wednesday, February 3, 2016

So maybe, just maybe this is the problem!

I'm so happy to find this!!!! It must be shared... I can't believe I've missed such an awesome chart... just proof that you should never ever stop looking to learn!
Especially in gardening (or livestock!)

From Irish eyes garden seeds.. Its all becoming clear... I hope! I have had terrible luck growing Irish potatoes here in the south east.. my sweet potato yields far surpass, without near the disease or pest problems.. so thats what I concentrate on.. after all, a big part of why I garden is to avoid the grocery store ,  yield matters!! So I've resumed to only growing a small bed for variety sake...  

I know this looks like a fist popping out of the ground! Its a sweet potato about the size of my face I grew in 2014
Whats becoming clear is, after looking at this chart I see I've been planting the wrong varieties for my area! Never mind its the varieties sold in my local garden centers (we learned the hard way with fruit trees that just because the local shop sells it, doesn't mean it will grow good in your area)
...also,  never mind I've even tried special (expensive) disease free organic seed of these said varieties... I've always had poor, pest prone potatoes.. to the point I wasn't going to give up any garden space to grow them at all this year.

What lead me to this cart was on pinterest (don't you love pinterest!) I saw these (pictured below) on several websites...So I'm thinking what a cool way to grow potatoes without having to give up a whole garden bed for a less than productive vegetable here.
.... but just seeing cute garden projects doesn't make me believe they will work.. as I've tried my fair share of cutsie garden projects that were huge fails.. like the vertical pallet garden (waste of a good pallet)..the straw bale garden (oh the horror of that one!!) and the permaculture herbal spiral (bahahahaha!)
So I searched for potato tower results... seeing mostly bad results and disappointed gardeners I was loosing hope...and then I found this
Sow and Dipity's website
and why so many fail with this method... they use the wrong kind of potatoes!

So much like I've been using the wrong varieties for my area I also need to use certain varieties to grow in cages. I won't go into details here I'll let you go to the website and see how to make these work yourself.. 

But I'm hopeful that maybe I can get a decent , less of a hassle harvest using towers and the correct varieties.. for my area AND for cages!

Even if the cage doesn't work at least I may have found the answer to us getting more Irish Potatoes here with our long hot summers and multiple pest/disease challenges that like to hit this vegetable !  

Variety of vegetable or grain ,, much like breed of livestock can have everything to do with success on a subsistence farm.

I'll do my best to post the results of my potato towers this year! Gotta try this!