1 Because potatoes grow underground, it was hard to tell how prolific the plants had been. After harvesting, Ryan and Wilmer were so pleased with this year's crop.
2 The best time to dig up potatoes is on a dry day once the vines have died back. This means, when the tubers are done growing, and the potato plants have begun to turn yellow and withered.
3 This may be a less attractive sight in the garden, but it is a well anticipated one because it means the potatoes are ready!
4 Ryan gently turned the soil using a four-pronged pitchfork. It's important to dig them up carefully, so as not to puncture any of the tubers.
5 Ryan started away from the potatoes and worked his way in to safely turn over the soil.
6 Then, Ryan manually began digging for the potatoes using un-gloved hands, so he could feel for them better underground.
7 Within minutes, there were potatoes everywhere.
8 These are Peter Wilcox potatoes, a very beautiful purple and gold variety. It stores well, and is great for potato salads. It is also good fried, roasted or boiled.
9 Bake King produces early, oblong potatoes with thick, white skins and floury white flesh. As the name suggests, it's a great baking potato, especially for those who like to eat the skins.
10 Wilmer also helped to carefully dig up the potato crops. An entire potato plant grows from just one potato eye, although when planting, always plant a piece of potato with at least two eyes to ensure germination.
11 These Daisy Golds are large, oval shaped potatoes with smooth, yellow skins and dark, yellow flesh. They're well-loved for baking, boiling and mashing.
12 Never wash potatoes until right before using - this shortens the potato's storage life.
13 King Harry potatoes are an early season potato. It has white flesh and a moist, waxy texture. It's also a good storage potato.
14 Austrian Crescents are nutty-tasting, yellow flesh potatoes wrapped in light, thin yellow skins. They tend to have attractive crescent shapes. Austrian Crescents are very firm when cooked; the pieces hold their shape in potato salads.
15 These plants were not planted too deeply - all the potatoes were buried within the top five-inches of soil. Every variety yielded a good amount of potatoes.
16 It was easy to see how the potatoes were connected to the plant at the root area. They were very easy to pull off, and often came loose by themselves while digging around them.
17 But leave any green potatoes alone. When potatoes are exposed to light, they turn green, a sign the toxic substance called solanine is developing, which may cause illness if eaten in large quantities.
18 Here were some Red Thumb potatoes. This pink fleshed variety has a pleasing flavor and firm flesh, making them perfect for roasting.
19 Red Thumbs are smaller in size, but in great abundance in my garden.
20 Reddale potatoes are big, round, flat, and red with white flesh. It's a dependable grower and prolific producer of uniformly shaped potatoes.
21 Continue to dig around the soil - there are always more potatoes. Ryan and Wilmer picked every one they could find, even the tiniest of them. If not, they may grow into new plants, where they aren't wanted.
22 This Yukon Gem is blight resistant. It's a mid-season variety that is round to oval in shape, with light yellow skin and a creamy yellow flesh.
23 Don't leave harvested potatoes in the sun as excessive heat could cause them to cook. Just brush off as much soil as possible and let them dry in a cool place.
24 The purple potatoes are Huckleberry Golds - perfect for anyone who likes purple skins with golden yellow flesh. These potatoes are medium-sized, round to oval tubers - excellent for baking, boiling or frying.
25 Do you know... the average American eats approximately 142-pounds of potatoes each year? Potatoes are grown in every state from Florida to Alaska, yielding approximately 30-billion pounds of potatoes annually.
26 This could be our strongest potato harvest in the last several years! About 100-pounds of them!
27 They were loaded onto the Kawasaki and stored in my flower room - I can't wait to try them all!
28 Ideally, potatoes should be kept in a cool, dark environment around 45-50 degrees Fahrenheit. They can be stored in bins, boxes, or even paper bags - just nothing air tight to prevent rotting. And, don't store with apples - the ethylene gas will cause the potatoes to spoil.