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Perry-Winkle Farm

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Photos and text by Debbie Roos, Agricultural Extension Agent.

Potatoes, from Seed to Harvest

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George with heirloom Russian Banana fingerling potato seed pieces, one of the unusual potato varieties that they grow. Perry-winkle plants only double-certified (disease-free and organic) seed potatoes.

George with seed potatoes

George and Megan planting potatoes

George and Megan plant seed pieces in mid-March. Potatoes are a cool-season crop that needs at least 3 months to mature.

seed potatoes

‘All-Blue’ seed potatoes ready to be planted. They plant nine varieties of potatoes, and some Perry-winkle farmers’ market customers have been known to brag about their red, white, and blue potato salad!

laying drip tape

Cathy’s little cousin came by for a visit and wanted to play “farmer”, following George and Chris into the field as they laid drip tape for the newly planted potatoes.

newly planted potatoes

The potatoes are planted 9″ apart with drip irrigation tape to the side.

adjusting tractor

Cathy adjusts the width between hiller discs to ensure that the seed pieces are fully covered.

planting potatoes

Cathy covers the newly planted potatoes.

hilling potatoes

Cathy hills the potatoes with a tobacco bedder in late April. Hilling is done to ensure there is enough soil above the developing potatoes that they don’t push out of the hill and get exposed to light.

potato field

Potato field in mid-June.

harvesting potatoes

Mike (right) supervises campers from Screech Owl Farm Camp who come every year to help harvest potatoes in late June.

potato harvest

Some of the colorful, just-harvested potatoes. Clockwise from top: ‘Caribe’, ‘Cranberry Red’, and ‘Carola’.

Cathy and Melissa at Fearrington market

The freshly dug potatoes are front and center with Cathy and Melissa at the Fearrington Farmers’ Market in mid-July.

next page

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Written By

Debbie Roos, N.C. Cooperative ExtensionDebbie RoosExtension Agent, Agriculture - Sustainable / Organic Production Call Debbie Email Debbie N.C. Cooperative Extension, Chatham County Center
Page Last Updated: 10 years ago
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