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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is the first year that I grew potatoes under straw near the plum trees.

I prepared the bed as advised on youtube and planted my potatoes and put plenty of straw over the rows.

I got some small potatoes at the end of the season. These potatoes are too small to mess with, so I will be making pickled potatoes out of them. This is good because this winter I can open a jar, and drain the juice out. Then I cut the potatoes up into a bowl. Then add slices of boiled eggs and cellary, diced onions, and mix in mayo with salt and pepper. Presto potato salad.

The reason that the potatoes did not grow well is because, "THEY LIED!" You can not raise potatoes in any soil not even clay soil like I have.

But I did notice that the soil under the newspaper was black for about an inch down and not tan like it was before I planted potatoes. So I am evening out all the hay that I placed over the potatoes. Then I am raking leaves, that I took from our forest area, over the hay. This week I am getting some topsoil/manure blend and putting some over the leaves. Then I will get a truck load of manuer/mulch from the dairy and top the rows of with this. And I will add worms to the mix. I am sure to have a good garden soil by next spring when I plant sweet potatoes there.

My lasagna garden bed turned out better then I thought it would. It was deffinately better then what I have been able to eeck out from the clay soil that we have worked with for the past few years. But it is still not anywhere near what I would like to have. So what I did in the potato rows will be done in the lasania garden to ready it for next spring.

I do have to say that the new asperagus beds I put in between my apple trees turned out really well. I layed down cardboard where I would build up the beds for the asperagus. I put manure and mulch on top of that then I placed the asperagus crowns over the mounds and put more compost over the crowns.

As the summer became hotter I placed straw and more compost over the asperagus. Here it is August and I am still getting a few new shoots of asperagus comming up through the rich moist beds. I'll put them to bed with manure this fall.

I am already starting another area for a dozen more asperagus crowns next spring. I have the cardboard down and am composting hay/leaf mulch at 6" high. I will take some of the soil and manure that I am getting and mound it up over the rows I have started for my new beds.

One thing I want to say is that the straw that was the foundation for my lasagna garden in the pig pen, has really kept the garden watered and the plants quenched. I have a water problem in August through October in my area and the hay is still wet with only one soaking a week.

In homesteading for self-sufficiency, you will face many problems, and not all of those problems will be fixed the first time around. You will take advise from friends/family and neighbors, and still it will not work on your homestead. But keep on keeping on. It is the only sure way that you will get to the "Right Solution" to the problems that you will be facing on your homestead.

God bless and keep on prepping.
 

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One thing I've always read is NOT to grow potatoes or tomatoes in the same place/soil as the year before due to some kind of wilting disease. I've been following this rule so I don't know if it is really that critical but I don't have wilting diseases.

But you are correct in improving your soil from year to year. The more you work organic matter into it the better it gets.

Rick
 

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You should only plant potatoes every 3rd year in the same bed so they don't pass potato disease.

We have clay soil here and they grow just fine. Are you sure you dug down to get them all? And did you mound them as the grew? With leaves and such to lighten the clay?
 

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SouthernSassy's Great Potato Harvest Event!

Back in the spring I had a madly sprouting new red potato which was no longer fit to eat, so I cut it up and planted the eyes in a large concrete container. I've never grown potatoes and I was curious to see what would happen.

Yesterday I dug up my potatoes. I have two which are decent size but not larger, and five others that resemble very large marbles. Some of the crop had already begun to sproud more new potatoes; apparently I waited too long to harvest.

Finally, after watching the plants over the summer I learned they're very concealable. They just look like some kind of weed/plant; most people would never realize there's a potato under there.

I want to try it again next year.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I dug down. You can only dig the 1" in my soil before hitting bedrock type soil. But the potatoes were suppose to grow on top of the newspaper/cardboard that was laid down over the hard soil. I wont be growing potatoes there again next year.

Sweet potatoes are not in the potato family they are in another family.
 

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I dug down. You can only dig the 1" in my soil before hitting bedrock type soil. But the potatoes were suppose to grow on top of the newspaper/cardboard that was laid down over the hard soil. I wont be growing potatoes there again next year.

Sweet potatoes are not in the potato family they are in another family.
Did you mound them though? If you're planting at the top of the ground you need to continue adding more soil around the plants through the season so more of the plant is underground to produce potatoes.
 

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We got 15 bushels from 3 40ft rows. The soil is red clay but we add all grass clippings and yard mulch during the winter and make sure the soil is tilled and loosened to 12in in depth before planting to give the potatoes room to grow.
 
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