Fingerling Potatoes

Last fall, I got three kinds of fingerling potatoes from Cecil and Gwen, they are red, pink and white. Cecil and Gwen is a lovely couple who have a big garden, each year they fill the garden with potatoes, onions, beans, squashes, tomatoes, cucumbers and any veggies you can think of. Besides enjoying the fresh veggies, they can and preserve much of their harvest to feed the extended family and whoever happens to stop by. Cecil and Gwen came from many generations of gardeners, their parents gardened in the 1930's, their grandparents gardened in the 1900's. The garden tips I got from them are the real deal, simple, effective and cheap. Cecil and Gwen  make the best soap bars they call "Columbia Bars", only natural ingredients were used. After bathing with their soap, the fragrant lingers on all day. Unfortunately, the only place you can buy them is at Scappoose Farmer's Market...

Cecil told me about how he got started on these wonderful fingerling potatoes. Years ago, someone gave him six fingerling potatoes. Instead of eating them, he planted them. That fall he harvested a couple dozens of them. He didn't eat any of it, instead he saved all his harvest and planted again next year. From then on, each year he would save a bucket of the best potatoes and plant again next season. I was lucky enough this year to get about 5 lb. of the fingerlings them. I planted them all this year in early May. When I first planted the potatoes, the rows were kind of bare, so I planted some lettuce in-between the potatoes. It worked out really. I was able to enjoy the lettuce before the potatoes were up. As the weather got hot, the potatoes were able to shade the lettuce, delaying the bolting. It is a real good combination. When the potatoes got to about 2 foot tall, I piled on soil at the base and continue to do so throughout the season. I was told by Cecil this will make the potatoes more productive as the buried portion will produce potatoes.

Buy the end of July I was able to dig out a few to taste, they did not disappoint! They are creamy, sweet and buttery good. The potatoes start to bloom, I can tell by digging around the base there are quite a few potatoes in there. By August, the weather is heating up and the potato plants starting to deteriorate. I pumped more water making sure the base is moist, allowing the tubers formed at the base to grow even larger.

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