This year we're trying Bintje, a yellow potato. But instead of having a long straight stretch of wonderfully mulched and hilled up plants, through which I'd just have to reach in and tug loose a few new potatoes every now and then, I'm doing spot planting, but that's only because I don't have that many long straight stretches of garden.
While I like potatoes, in fact I'd go so far as to say that I deeply admire them, my enthusiasm wanes at the idea of using my long straight stretches on them. The potato is a highly useful veg, I admit - handy in a pinch, able to do double duty in any number of dishes, and what's not to like about the way they turn into a hot crisp chip - but they are definitely the character actor in my garden. They don't get top billing. They get what's there for them.
Like this guy. Couldn't do without him but would I run a mile to meet him, heart all akimbo? Methinks not. (sorry Mr Reilly)
Thus, the long straight stretches I reserve for the leading actors: tomatoes, peas, greens, and sprouting broccoli. The ones that inspire intense passion, the ones that set my heart racing, the ones that...well, you get the idea.
Like this guy. I'd run a mile to meet him. Heck, I'd even run TWO miles. Maybe three.
Oooh la la, Mr Darcy. Let me change that wet shirt of yours. Mop your fevered brow?
Dig a trench about 10 inches deep. Add some rock phosphate, maybe a little bone meal (my soil being clayey and heavy). Add potatoes. Cover with a dusting of potting soil and some straw.
Reserve some soil to cover them as the sprouts grow up. When they get to be about 3-4" tall, cover the shoots almost to the top.
I've got some in trenches, some in chicken wire circles, and some in brick squares.
Like this one. This is the After to the Before at the start of this post. The one inspired by Mr Reilly and Mr Darcy. I will plant some of my character actor Bintjes here.
As the shoots come up I'll cover them. In fact, I covered them this morning. As they grow, I'll increase my Flying Buttresses and add more soil to a depth of about twelve inches.
Looks purple to me but I'm willing to be amazed by the idea that it's a neon colour.
Whatever it is, it's very pretty.
These flowers are delicious tempura-ed.