It All Comes Down to the Meat and Potatoes: Part 1


Amanda StoffelsPotatoes have been something I wanted to experiment with growing for quite sometime. As I would find old potatoes in the pantry with eyes growing on them, I would find myself thinking where could I plant them. Timing and space have always been a challenge so I was never able to act on the itch to grow them until this year.

With the expansion of the garden to the back, I took it upon myself to take the summer and fall to make compost from the chicken coop. As the months went on, I realized that I wasn't going to be able to fill the garden box to the top with my own compost by spring, but I wasn't going to haul more dirt to the back until it got a lot warmer. After reading about building a potato box, I felt a half-filled raised bed was the next best thing.

One January day as I was making mashed potatoes, I discovered a jewel at the bottom of the bag! I immediately cut it up into chunks and headed out to the raised bed in the back. The puppies were right behind me trying to figure out what I was up to. I shooed them away and got to planting. I only had four so I felt I could fit them in a corner of the square-foot garden. I headed back in with a sense of pride. 

A day later I came back out like a little school child to check the plant and to my dismay the dogs had dug it up! I searched all around but to no avail. The dog(s) had eaten my potato! The challenge has begun!  

I bought planting potatoes at the local feed store and put them in a dark place so that they were good and ready to plant. On March 1, I was so excited to have a beautiful day so I locked the dogs up and planted all my awesome onions and potatoes. It was a success! A few weeks later I consulted the Farmers Almanac, and begun planting more plants. Things were going great! 

About this same time, I bought some broiler hens so that we could have a great homegrown meal of meat and potatoes. As the birds were growing so were the pine shavings and poop pile. I was very proud of my naive idea to use the shavings with straight chicken poop as mulch for the raised bed in the back yard where my dogs run free. I watered the plants knowing I was fertilizing the plants and helping conserve water while I did it! 

Live The Good Life with GRIT!

Grit JulAug 2016At GRIT, we have a tradition of respecting the land that sustains rural America. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing to GRIT through our automatic renewal savings plan. By paying now with a credit card, you save an additional $6 and get 6 issues of GRIT for only $16.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and send me one year of GRIT for just $22.95!

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters