Our first Potato U-Pick experiment was a success thanks to the potatoes originally planted for the youth GROW program and the deluge of rain this spring which had other plans and delayed their availability. Luckily, this happy accident led to a wonderful morning and may lead to an annual event.
Filling up two separate sessions, community participants of all ages were out to enjoy the bright sunshine and learn how this tasty staple is grown while harvesting a bag or two to take home for their favorite recipe.
The variety of most intrigue to all was the Kennebec, a white jacket potato whose claim to fame is being the chosen one used for the In-N-Out French fry because of its smooth white skin, shallow eyes and its reputation as one of the finest baking potatoes. Other types available were the red thumb fingerling used for roasting and potato salad that is typically harvested in 80-100 days; short season varieties included Yukon gold – a yellow potato with a creamy texture and Red Pontiac known for its mild, creamy flavor.
UCCE Master Gardeners assisted with instructing and educating attendees about tool safety, safe harvest practices, and growing vegetables such as potatoes in small spaces, even apartment patios.